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‘Freak waves’ predicted to hit Victorian coast

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A storm system in the Southern Ocean is predicted to bring huge waves to the Victorian coast on Friday.

The waves are expected to reach up to 14 metres out at sea, and swells may reach seven metres closer to the shore.

It’s welcome news for professional surfers competing at the Rip Curl Pro at Bells Beach.

“We’re really excited for this swell. No one is more excited than the world’s best surfers,” Tom Bennett, spokesman for the World Surf League, told 3AW’s Neil Mitchell.

“It’s really big. It’s probably going to be the biggest waves we’ve seen at Bells for this event in recent history,” he said.

But the mammoth waves are unlikely to trouble the surfers.

“Here at Bells there are deeper water waves, so there probably won’t be the issue of hitting the bottom, which is generally the biggest sort of challenge with big surf,” the World Surf League spokesman said.

Conditions are expected to ease on Saturday.

The Rip Curl Pro has been put on hold for several days while organisers waited for swell to pick up.