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Surfer fights off shark during competition in South Africa

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A shark slides up to surfer Mick Fanning, perhaps to congratulate him on a fine run.

The J-Bay Open is a major surfing competition held in South Africa. Mick Fanning is an elite Australian surfer with three world titles under his belt. This shark is not remotely impressed by any of that.

After one of Fanning's runs, the shark slides up behind the surfer, leading to that gripping scene of panic and relief above. Fanning was not injured at all, and was cool enough to give us the most Australian quote possible.

The competition, which is in its final day, was halted for the remainder of Sunday. Because, you know, SHARKS. No word on whether Fanning will swim back out to punch the rest of the sharks in the cape to ensure the show can go on Monday.

Fanning described the event afterwards and said he managed to punch the shark in the back.

The full video of the attack and rescue is just completely insane.

Want to learn more about Mick Fanning? Read our 2013 longform on a wave so deadly, he had to ride it.

★★★

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