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The Honolulu Advertiser

Updated at 4:39 p.m., Thursday, December 14, 2006

Andy Irons edges Slater for Pipeline Masters crown

Advertiser Staff

Kaua'i's Andy Irons is still the surfer to beat when it comes to

surfing in Hawai'i's powerful waves.

Irons won the Rip Curl Pro Pipeline Masters in spectacular fashion on Thursday, edging world champion Kelly Slater of Florida in the final.

Irons had a two-wave score of 19.87 in the final, including a perfect 10 late in the heat to clinch the win. He received $30,000 for the victory — his fourth Pipeline Masters title.

Irons also won the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing Championship for the fourth time in five years. The Pipeline Masters is the third of three events in the Triple Crown series. Irons made the final heat at all three events. He also won the first contest at Hale'iwa Ali'i Beach, and placed third at the second contest at Sunset Beach.

Slater, the current world champion, placed second in the Pipeline Masters with a two-wave score of 17.73. Florida's Cory Lopez placed third, and California's Rob Machado was fourth.