Wilson to resume quest for world title at Jeffrey's Bay

CONTENDER: Julian Wilson during the last event, the Fiji Pro. He is expected to fare well in South Africa.
CONTENDER: Julian Wilson during the last event, the Fiji Pro. He is expected to fare well in South Africa. ED SLOANE

SURFING: Sunshine Coast's Julian Wilson is keen to continue his Championship Tour campaign at South Africa, where a first-round clash with 11-time world champion Kelly Slater awaits.

The 28-year-old heads into the sixth event of the 11-stop global circuit in eighth place on the standings, after a season-best quarter-finals appearance at Fiji last month.

He claimed third place at the Eastern Cape break last year and was leading the final there in 2015, when his opponent Mick Fanning was confronted by a shark. They were declared joint second place-getters.

Despite the scare, Wilson's got an affinity with the event and relishes competing there.

"Always look forward to J-Bay on the calendar," he said via social media.

The event's waiting period starts on Wednesday. Wilson's been drawn into a three-man heat which also includes Americans Slater and Kanoa Igarashi.

They are ranked 18th and 28th respectively.

Australian Matt Wilkinson is atop the leaderboard after a last-start victory.

Topics:  championship tour j-bay open julian wilson

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