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Kelly Slater to skip Rio Pro

  • Kelly Slater to skip Rio Pro

    US surfer Kelly Slater has withdrawn from the Rio Pro in Brazil, citing personal reasons.

Kelly Slater has withdrawn from the Rio Pro, joining the host of big-name stars sitting out the Brazilian leg of the World Surfing League.

The WSL released a statement confirming Slater had opted out due to "personal reasons", his absence coming a year after he intimated contamination in the Rio water had made him sick.

In a conversation with Surfline, Slater jokingly said he missed his flight to Rio, and remained tight-lipped about why he wouldn't compete in Brazil.

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Joining Slater in missing the Rio event will be Australian contingent Mick Fanning, Joel Parkinson, Kai Otton and the recently-retired Taj Burrow.

Parkinson has withdrawn to nurse a knee injury, though it didn't stop him appearing in the Komune Bali Pro last week, where he reached the quarter-finals.

Aussie duo Owen Wright and Bede Durbidge remained sidelined with injury.

Durbidge has not surfed since breaking his pelvis at the Pipe Masters last December, while Wright is still recovering from the head injury he suffered in a fall last year.

In their absence, current world No.1 Matt Wilkinson leads a group of less experienced countrymen.

Slater will be replaced by 20-year-old Brazilian surfer Luca Silveira.

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