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Fantasy Geek Guide: Women's Margaret River Pro

As the WSL Championship Tour (CT) heads for the west of Australia, it's perhaps not all that surprising that Stephanie Gilmore is leading the pack once again, arriving there in the Jeep Leaders' yellow jersey. The six-time World Champion is always going to be a favorite on lined-up walls, and she's delivered. But out at the rugged reefs of Western Australia, things get a bit more unpredictable. Margaret River is a demanding break that calls for both mental fortitude and a more spontaneous approach, so keep that in mind as you assess your all-important fantasy picks, then make your picks here.

Stephanie Gilmore of Australia prior to her Round One heat at the Drug Aware Pro, Margaret River. Stephanie Gilmore WSL / Ed Sloane

Tier A (pick one)

Options: Lakey Peterson, Stephanie Gilmore, Caroline Marks

Playing It Safe: While Stephanie Gilmore has never won in Margaret River, she does have three Semifinal appearances. Her average heat score is more than a point higher than Peterson's, and her heat win rate is 25 percent higher, too. She'll be surfing with a little extra motivation as well, now that she's wearing the Jeep Leaders' Jersey again.

Rolling the Dice: Lakey Peterson has been knocking on the door of a World Title run for years, and while she appears to have reached a new threshold of performance and mental fortitude, Margaret River will be a huge test. She's only made one Quarterfinal appearance here in five events surfed, so she'll be coming in with something to prove.

The Contrarian: Given her breakout performances at Snapper and Bells, rookie Caroline Marks isn't that much of a contrarian pick. Her powerful backhand attack could be a great fit for the challenging righthanders at Margarets, so don't be at all surprised if she keeps the momentum going.

Carissa Moore winning her Round Three heat. Carissa Moore WSL / Ed Sloane

Tier B (pick two)

Options: Carissa Moore, Tatiana Weston-Webb, Keely Andrew, Silvana Lima, Tyler Wright, Johanne Defay, Sally Fitzgibbons, Malia Manuel, Coco Ho

Playing it Safe: Carissa Moore and Tyler Wright are both obvious picks here, as they lead in almost every category at Margaret River. Moore has two wins to Wright's one, with three Finals appearances. She also leads the entire women's field with a heat win rate of 82.61 percent. Tyler's no slouch out here either. She's made four trips to the Finals.

Rolling the Dice: Sally Fitzgibbons is also a former winner out here, and she's put in some of her most inspiring performances when conditions get rough and tricky. She's right behind Carissa and Tyler on average heat score. If you're looking for a bit more separation with your, Silvana Lima has been turning heads. She's escalated her aggressiveness, and the judges are taking note.

The Contrarian: Coco Ho is coming into Margaret River with two straight, ninth-place finishes, and she's only made one Quarterfinal in Western Australia. Statistically, that makes her the longest shot on this list.

Nikki Van Dijk of Australia advances to the Quarterfinals of the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro after winning Heat 3 of Round Four at the Main Break, Western Australia. Nikki Van Dijk WSL / Kelly Cestari

Tier C (pick one)

Options: Sage Erickson, Nikki Van Dijk, Macy Callaghan, Paige Hareb, Bronte Macaulay

Playing it Safe: Nikki Van Dijk has the highest average heat score of this bunch at Margaret River, and while she's currently ranked No. 13 she's showing serious signs of growth. She continues to take her licks against the world's best, but she's doing her fair share of disrupting, too.

Rolling the Dice: Paige Hareb doesn't have huge heat score numbers, but she has won a WSL Qualifying Series event out here before. The burly elements of the west are a lot like her New Zealand home, and her powerful backhand could do some damage if she completes her finishing moves. Local Bronte Macaulay is another one worth considering. Her father is a former winner out here, although back in his day, the event was won primarily on the left.

The Contrarian: Macy Callaghan has shown flashes of brilliance in her handful of Championship Tour appearances, but she's yet to drop the hammer. The former World Junior Champ could find her swagger at any moment, but it's hard to say confidently it will happen here.

Make your Fantasy picks here, and watch the Margaret River Pro live daily on the WSL and Facebook from April 11 - 22.

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