CULBURRA Beach's Owen Wright has broken through to win his maiden Tahiti Pro Teahupo'o crown, after defeating Brazil's Gabriel Medina in Wednesday's final.
The win, Wright's first World Surf League (WSL) Championship Tour (CT) title since taking out the 2017 Quiksilver Pro, was set-up by a dominant display in the morning's quarter-final against Brazil's Jadson Andre.
Wright carried in his red-hot form from the previous day to produce waves of 9.07 and a perfect 10 - for a combined score of 19.07, edging out Andre's 16.67.
This moved the Culburra Beach Boardrider into the semi-finals, where he was pitted against South Africa's Jordy Smith.
Wright continued his tear by producing waves of 8.00 and 7.67, to see his 15.67 oust Smith's 10.66 - booking his spot in the decider against current world champion Gabriel Medina, from Brazil.
In the epic final, Wright's two final waves of 9.17 and 7.90 saw him total 17.07, compared to the Brazilian's 14.93, sealing his fourth ever WSL CT title.
"I can't be happier," said Wright to WSL.
"Gabby [Medina] was always going to be the toughest match-up and I had no priority and I snuck into those few on the inside.
"I tried to get as deep as possible and still make it.
"I teared up out there when the hooter went - I've been working hard and I am stoked to win."
Wright, who's fightback from a traumatic brain injury suffered at Pipeline in 2015 has been inspirational, used last year's loss in Medina in the Tahiti final as a driving factor to go one better this time around.
"I said I really wanted Gabby in the final just to have that rematch and it was such a special time last year," Wright said.
"The waves were just so perfect and to share that with a great mate was really special.
"When you come out here and in your first heat you get a 10, it makes things feel like things are coming.
"I haven't won since Snapper and it has been so long.
"I won so early back then in my recovery and it has been so up-and-down and it has finally felt up and up and up in the last few months.
"I've tried to win this event a lot of times and it is amazing to finally get that today."
Despite not being able to defend his crown, Medina had nothing but praise for Wright - who has now moved up into world number eight in the rankings.
"Owen [Wright] really deserved that one," Medina said.
"He started the day off with a 10-point ride and when someone starts like that, I think you feel like it is going to go your way.
"I am happy for him and stoked to be in the final against him again.
"Last year it was me and today he got me.
"I love to compete against him, he is one of the best so it was good to get second to Owen."
The next stop on the 2019 WSL CT is the Freshwater Pro at Surf Ranch Lemoore from September 19-21.