FORMER South Coast surfer Tyler Wright claimed the 2013 Roxy Pro Gold Coast presented by Land Rover over Gerroa's Sally Fitzgibbons in punchy one-metre waves at the primary venue of Snapper Rocks.
The event was extended after several lay-days due to insufficient surf. However, both surfers were up to the challenge in the final.
In the first of seven events on the 2013 ASP Women's World Championship Tour, the Roxy Pro Gold Coast enjoyed a down-to-the-wire finish with Wright and Fitzgibbons going head-to-head in a tough final where Wright triumphed 17.97 to Fitzgibbons's 16.66.
Despite Fitzgibbons holding the lead for the majority of the heat, Wright secured a wave in the dying moments and tore it apart for a 9.20 out of a possible 10, taking the heat lead and the win.
Fitzgibbons, 2012 ASP Women's world runner-up, was one of the form surfers of the event and transferred that form into the final.
"It's a hard one to swallow when you lose like that," Fitzgibbons said.
"Tyler is such a strong surfer and she trains really hard and she pulled it out on that final wave so congrats to her.
"Not the result I wanted, but still a strong start for me so I'll just regroup and focus on the next one."
Fitzgibbons retains the current ASP Women's World No 2 spot heading into the second event of the season.