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Semifinalists Decided at Vahine Pro Junior in Tahiti

The Papara Pro Surf Festival ran through the quarterfinals of the Vahine Pro Junior, while the open ASP 1-Star Qualifying Series event and Men's Tahiti Nui Pro Junior were called off for the day.

Vahine Fierro (PYF), from Huahine Island in French Polynesia caused the upset of the day, eliminating Holly-Sue Coffey (AUS) in the quarterfinals. It was a wave-starved heat and 14-year-old Fierro adapted to the conditions more quickly, using her polished backhand attack to eliminate her more experienced opponent. Fierro will take on Australian Sophia Bernard when competition resumes.

"This is the first time that I've been into the Semifinals in a contest and I'm so happy," Fierro said. "I have so many mixed emotions right now. I wasn't really nervous, then I got my good wave and I was so excited. My next heat will be hard, so I will just have to learn and do my best. I'm from Huahine and we have only reef breaks so it's very different for me surfing here, but I'm really enjoying this event."

Papara comp site Papara Pro Surf Festival event site WSL / Will Hayden-Smith

Keely Andrew (Sunshine Coast, QLD/AUS) continued to drop excellent scores at the Vahine Pro Junior, winning her quarterfinal clash against Shelby Detmers (USA) with an 8.85 and an 8.00. Andrew will take on local Tahitian Karelle Poppke in the Semifinals.

"My scores keep getting bigger each heat, hopefully I can keep improving," Andrew said. "You have to be patient, the bigger waves are going to score more points and they are really fun when you get the right ones. It's great that we are into the two person priority heats, it makes it more even. It's great preparation for the ASP Qualifying Series events that I'll be doing later in the year."

The Papara Surf Festival runs from April 8 รขโ‚ฌโ€œ 13. For more information visit

Vahine Fierro putting her backhand surfing to work
WSL / Will Hayden-Smith
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Vahine Fierro putting her backhand surfing to work
WSL / Will Hayden-Smith
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