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Avoca Crowned 2017 nudie Australian Boardriders Battle Champions

Avoca Boardriders clinched the all-important National Final of the 2017 nudie Australian Boardriders Battle, giving the small Central Coast club huge bragging rights for the next year.

Avoca Avoca Boardriders, the Champions of all Australian Boardriders Clubs. WSL

The 24-team field was narrowed down to four for Sunday's grand Final, which pitted Avoca against reigning champions Narrabeen, as well as high-powered clubs from Snapper Rocks and Bondi.

Avoca, anchored by Matt Wilkinson and Adrian "Ace" Buchan, reigned supreme notching up a giant 35.40 heat total.

Avoca Boardriders Club win the 2017 nudie Australia Boardriders Battle Final at Newcastle Avoca Boardriders Club. WSL / Tom Bennett

The huge lead was enough for Avoca to overcome a five-point deduction they were dealt due to Wilkinson catching more than the allocated wave limit.

"That was so much fun and it has made for such a sick weekend," said Wilkinson. "There's been so many good surfers in this club for so long and if it wasn't so hard to get us all together we could maybe win more of these events, but once we all come together I think it really displays how much depth we have."

Matt Wilkinson winning heat 3 of round 2 of the Teams division at the Nudie Australian Boardrider Battle Final Matt Wilkinson has a good surf to win ratio in Newcastle. WSL / Ethan Smith

Fellow Avoca surfer and CT surfer Adrian Buchan relished the chance to give back to the club that has supported him for several decades.

Adrian Buchan winning heat 6 of round 2 of the Skins division at the Nudie Australian Boardrider Battle Final. Adrian Buchan was a standout for Avoca even posting the highest single wave score of the event, a near perfect 9.90 point ride. WSL / Ethan Smith

"For me personally it feels amazing to give back to the club that supported me since I was a grommet," said Buchan.

"This club provided for me financially when I went to Nationals and World Titles in my early days," he continued. "They have always had my back and they continue to when they get up in the middle of the night to watch our heats online when we're away competing. To be fair, I think the Central Coast rivalry we have with the North Shelly guys has really inspired the entire club and pushed us to expand the depth of our own club and given us the spark to win. To also surf with people like Sam Chell, who I've looked up to for a long time and maybe inspire the younger members is an incredible feeling."

Representing Snapper Rocks, 6x World Champion Stephanie Gilmore said the camaraderie in the club really helped drive them into the runner-up position.

Steph Gilmore The Queen of Snapper Rocks Steph Gilmore. WSL / Ethan Smith

"This is a great event for team culture and helps grow the camaraderie between all the members," said Gilmore. "It was certainly nerve-racking to be put under that pressure to perform but it's also the perfect practice for a World Tour event."

2012 World Champion and Snapper Rocks surfer Joel Parkinson echoed similar sentiments.

Joel Parkinson and Dave Cathels at the 2017 ABB Parko and Davey Cathels jostling at the gate trying to find another ABB Championship for their clubs. WSL / Tom Bennett

"We're all passionate about this club and our local beach, which is something every surfer in this event shares," said Parkinson. "The waves we got here and the venue truly provided the perfect amphitheater for all the clubs. I already can't wait for next year."

Joel Parkinson placed third in heat 3 of round 2 of the Skins division at the Nudie Australian Boardrider Battle Final Parko fought a hard fight but his beloved Snapper Rocks Surfriders came just short of the event win. WSL / Ethan Smith
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