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Paige Hareb requalifies for WSL Championship Tour

New Zealand’s Paige Hareb has requalified for the World Surf League’s full championship tour in 2019.

The Taranaki surfer confirmed her place in the elite division with a standout performance in Australia on Monday.

Hareb has had her struggles on the world championship tour (WCT) this year, failing to make it past the second round and being ranked 18th with just one event left in Hawaii later this month.

That left her relying on making it back through the secondary world qualifying series (WQS) where the top six surfers at the end of the year are guaranteed a spot in the top division.Hareb, currently third on the WQS rankings, made it to the quarterfinals of the Port Stephen Toyota Pro at Birubi Beach in northern New South Wales. That ensured she will have enough points to surf the WCT next year.

Hareb, who won at her last start in Japan, was thrilled to take the pressure off her shoulders. Her requalification comes at a lucrative time with the tour to have equal prizemoney for men and women in 2019, significantly boosting the women’s pay cheques.

She took her hot form to Birubi Beach where she posted the highest heat total of the event so far, a 16.86 (out of a possible 20) in her fifth round clash with Australian Claire Bevilacqua.

“That was really fun out there today,” Hareb said.

“Although it’s small this bank suits the wave size and is way better on high tide and I seem to be getting all of the high tide heats. It felt great to post a big score like that and hope it can boost my confidence.

“I’ve struggled to make a heat on the CT this year so now I’m safe for 2019 I want to go to Maui in a good head space and try to make a couple of heats. I’m just stoked that I’m back on next year.”

Hareb will surf the Hawaiian event at Honolua Bay in Maui on November 25.

Her presence on the full tour next year boosts her chances of qualifying for the Tokyo 2020 where surfing makes its Olympics debut.

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