Rumours heat up Pipeline will be Slater's last

WILL SWANTON
Last updated 12:28 08/12/2012
Kelly Slater
Getty Images
SWAN SONG: Kelly Slater is expected to retire from full-time competition after the Pipeline Masters.

Relevant offers

Other Sports

Kiwi star Mark Hunt might quit UFC due to performance-enhancing drugs New Zealand's Golden Olympic moments: Yvette Williams in Helsinki 1952 Junior Black Sox in medal contention at world junior softball champs National boxing champion and rugby rep Sam Watt faces critical career choice Fit and healthy Jack Bauer disappointed to miss out on Olympic Games road race New Zealand kayaker Mike Dawson helps feed locals ahead of Rio Olympics Rio Olympics provides ideal motivation for Southland javelin thrower Tori Peeters Quiz: Test your sports knowledge - July 29 Marathon runner Paul Martelletti loses Rio appeal after Sports Tribunal of New Zealand decision Junior Black Sox reach world softball champs playoffs

Kelly Slater's mother will attend the Pipeline Masters for the first time in more than a decade as her son attempts to crush Australia's Joel Parkinson and Mick Fanning by grabbing one more world title for the road.

Slater is expected to announce his retirement from full-time competition at the end of the event and the arrival on the North Shore from Florida of his mother, Judy, is another indisputable sign that the end is nigh for one of the most dominant athletes in the history of professional sport.

Slater's heavyweight stoush against Parkinson and Fanning is expected to begin at Pipeline tomorrow with sizeable north-west swell forecast to slam onto the famous reef.

"There's always pressure, mostly from myself, but I feel good heading into this event," Slater said.

"It looks like we have some good swells on tap for the window with really good winds. My mum is actually coming here for the first time in a very long time, which is going to be especially cool. I love Pipeline and I'm really looking forward to it all. To Joel and Mick, let's have a great contest. And may the best man win."

Parkinson was on the reef at dawn yesterday. If he places higher than Slater at Pipe, a maiden world title is his. Fanning needs to lift the trophy and have both front-runners eliminated early.

"I've been coming to Hawaii for most of my life and it feels like a second home to me," Parkinson said.

"I stay right there and surf Pipe whenever it breaks. It's a special wave and I love to get barrelled. At this point, it's impossible not to think about the title race, but the best you can do is focus on the event in front of you. I've never won the Pipe Masters, and my goal here is to win the event."

Fanning said he was looking to have a good time and was not focussed on a possible second world title.

"My only aims for this event are to have fun and get barrelled.," he said.

"With regard to the title race, Joel and Kelly have to stumble and I have to do well to have a shot. I'm not worrying about what they're doing, just focusing on my own event. To be in the running at this stage of the year feels great, though, and it should be an exciting few days ahead of us."

The top seeds begin their campaigns in round three. The most electrifying heat in round one pits Australia's winner of the World Cup of Surfing at Sunset Beach, Adam Melling, against Bruce Irons.

Ad Feedback

Melling is in the running for the prestigious and lucrative $US1 million Triple Crown title that is awarded to the leading surfer from Hawaii's acclaimed winter contests at Haleiwa, Sunset and Pipe.

- AAP

Special offers
Opinion poll

Will Shane Cameron beat Kali Meehan on Saturday?

For sure. Cameron will knock him out.

It will be close but I think Cameron on points.

Meehan will knock him out. This is his last fight.

I'm tipping Meehan to win on points.

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content