Merewether’s Jackson Baker missed the chance to make a big jump up the World Surf League qualifying series rankings despite a stand-out performance in round four at the Taiwan Open of Surfing.
Baker, ranked 119th on the QS before his final event of the year, bowed out in the quarter-finals of the 1500-point contest at Jinzun Harbor, Taitung on Sunday to earn 630 points, which improved his tally by 210 to 3540.
The natural-footer produced a 9.80 as part of a 15.95 two-wave total to win in round four but lost his man-on-man quarter-final to countryman Chris Zaffis 18.40 to 14.50. Indonesian Oney Anwar beat Australian Cody Robinson in the final.
Earlier, Baker won his round-four battle despite not getting into the line-up until three minutes into the heat. He then rode a long right-hander to score a near-perfect 9.80 out of 10.
“That was definitely the best heat I have surfed in a while,” Baker said.
“It didn’t start that well though – I barely made it past the shore break. When I finally got out there and composed myself that one wave came through and was just perfect. I had so many epic sections on it. I’m really happy with how I surfed it.”
In Hawaii, the season-ending 10,000-point QS event at Sunset Beach was yet to start on Sunday. Merewether’s Ryan Callinan, who is ranked ninth on the QS, is chasing a result to cement his top 10 place and spot on the championship tour for 2017.