- WSL / Tim Hain

Over 180 of the Australia / Oceania and Asia region's best up-and-coming surfers have arrived at the iconic Lagundri Bay on the Island of Nias, Indonesia, for the 2023 Nias Pro, World Surf League (WSL), Qualifying Series (QS) 5000 and Pro Junior events.

Opening Ceremony The Opening Ceremony at Nias today. - WSL / Tim Hain

Once again, the Nias Pro QS 5000 has been co-sanctioned across the WSL Asia and WSL Australia / Oceania regions, meaning the event will offer points to competitors in both regions as they look to qualify for the 2024 Challenger Series. The Pro Junior event is a WSL Asia event and will help qualify competitors to the 2023 World Junior Championships.

"Returning to such an iconic wave for a Qualifying Series event is really exciting for the World Surf League," said WSL APAC Tour Manager Ty Sorati. "Nias and Lagundri Bay have so much history in world surfing, and holding an event there further legitimises the pathway to the Challenger Series for the up-and-coming competitors in these regions. We'd like to thank our partners at the Asian Surf Cooperative and the Nias Government for their continued support."

"We're really grateful that the South Nias Government has been so consistent in supporting the Nias Pro, growing it from a QS 1000 to a QS 5000 with a Pro Junior for the second year in a row," said Tipi Jabrik, Secretary General of the PSOI, the governing body for surfing in Indonesia. "It has helped grow not only their international tourism but, importantly for us it helps the growth and supports Indonesian surfers and surfing in Indonesia as a whole."

Jarvis Earle Jarvis Earle topped score the men's Opening Round. - WSL / Tim Hain

Today saw the competitive action kick off with the opening rounds of the Nias Pro Junior running in fun, wind-affected two-to-three-foot surf at Lagundri Bay. Several of Asia's best juniors, along with a handful of Australia's QS competitors, put on a show with current World Junior Champion Jarvis Earle (AUS) stealing the show. Earle's backhand was on fire as the impressive young goofy-footer claimed an early heat win with a two-wave total of 13.27, the highest of the opening day.

"​​It was pretty tough conditions out there this morning, but I was stoked I got a couple of good ones and got through the heat," Earle said. "I was hoping for some bigger, barreling waves but to be surfing heat in warm water is so nice. Hopefully, the conditions improve for the rest of the event."

Sai Maniwa Sai Maniwa was a standout at Nias today. - WSL / Tim Hain

The women's Pro Juniors also ran with the Semifinalists being decided on the opening day of the competition. 2023 form surfer Sumomo Sato (JPN) and Ella McCaffray (USA) were standouts in the Quarterfinals, but it was Sai Maniwa (JPN) who put on the best performance, earning the highest score of the women's Quarterfinals with a 10.93 heat total.

The 2023 Nias Pro Qualifying Series (QS) 5000 and Pro Junior events will run from September 11 - 17 at Lagundri Bay, Nias, Indonesia.

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