A surfing competition in South Africa was canceled after professional surfer Mick Fanning escaped a shark attack in the opening minutes of the final heat. Organizers of the J-Bay Open called off the remainder of the competition. After discussion with WSL Commissioner Kieren Perrow, Fanning and competitor Julian Wilson decided to take equal second in rankings points and split the prize purse awarded to the winner. "We are incredibly grateful that no one was seriously injured today. Mick's composure and quick acting in the face of a terrifying situation was nothing short of heroic and the rapid response of our water safety personnel was commendable," Perrow said in a statement. Video of the incident shows at least one shark fin circling the World Surf League champion. Fanning spots it and starts furiously paddling away. A wave obscures what happens next, but when Fanning comes back into view he is still swimming away, this time without his board. Safety boats quickly arrive and pluck Fanning from the water. Fanning escaped with a severed leash on his surfboard. He told World Surf League TV that he "punched" the shark in the back to scare it away. The Water Safety Team also pulled Wilson out of the water.