Newcastle's Merewether Beach will kick-start the Australian leg of the surfing world championships, with Bells Beach to miss out on hosting the event on its historic Easter long weekend time slot for the first time since 1961.It's unclear at this stage as to whether any leg of the tour will be held at Bells Beach in Torquay, Victoria, after NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro revealed his state had secured the opening round of the World Surf League Championship Tour, which is currently scheduled for April 1-11."This event will inject millions of dollars into the local economy and broadcast Newy's iconic beaches to millions of people around the world," he said.It's understood the uncertainty surrounding hotel quarantine arrangements was the primary reason behind Victoria losing the event.Kelly Slater in action at Bells Beach in 2019 (Getty)A charted flight of up to 150 passengers - including the world's best male and female surfers - will fly from Los Angeles to Sydney Airport, with a mandatory 14-day quarantine period in a NSW hotel to be undertaken according to the Sydney Morning Herald."It's not Bells Beach which is devastating," Australian surfing great Joel Parkinson told Nine's TODAY."It's the most prestigious event in the surfing calendar and it's the one every wants to win as a kid."Decisions are being made so fast in this pandemic and sometimes there are some ones that have to be sacrificed."The noise that you can feel and hear in the water out there [Beach Balls] is so special.Pioneers of our sport have won that trophy."For a daily dose of the best of the breaking news and exclusive content from Wide World of Sports, subscribe to our newsletter by clicking here!
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