Photo: ASP

COOLANGATTA, QLD/Australia (Wednesday, August 17, 2011) – As the clock ticks down to the beginning of the 2011 SriLankan Airlines Pro we have two groups of surfers preparing for two different sides of this one historic event. On one side we have the world's best male longboarders preparing for the first of two events that will decide the 2011 ASP World Longboard Champion. And on the other side there's the world's best female surfers prepping to battle for qualification points at this ASP 6-Star Women's World Tour event.

Mitch Surman (Sunshine Coast, QLD) who qualified for the 2012 ASP World Longboard Tour through some impressive results on the Australasian Qualifying Series, has been awarded a wildcard into the SriLankan Airlines Pro. Surman, one of the youngest competitors in the field is looking forward to fulfilling one of his dreams of surfing at Arugam Bay, Sri Lanka.

"Getting the wildcard into the SriLankan Airlines Pro is a great kickstart for my surfing Career," Surman said. "Arugam Bay looks amazing, I can't wait to see it and surf it first hand. This is such an important event in deciding an ASP World Champion, and showing the world what the best longboarders can do and I'm glad to be a part of it."

Nikki Van Dijk (Phillip Island, VIC) is only 16-years-old, but has posted some impressive competitive results in 2011 and has been given the wildcard into the women's draw.

"The Srilankan Airlines Pro is a great opportunity for me to get some points and set myself up for a good seed for next year," said Van Dijk. "I remember watching the webcast last year when Julian (Wilson) won and the waves looked so fun. It's a warm water, right hand point, so I can't wait to get over there."

The SriLankan Airlines Pro will be held at Arugam Bay, Sri Lanka from Aug 30 – Sept 4. Check for event updates and happenings.