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Shark hits surfer on NSW Central Coast

14 November 2017

A British doctor who was attacked by a shark on the NSW Central Coast while surfing says he owes Mick Fanning a beer after copying the legend surfer's tactics and punching the animal off.

Charlie Fry, 25, had been in the water off Avoca Beach, 60 miles north of Sydney, when he was attacked on Monday.

"I saw a shark's head come out of the water with it's teeth and I just punched it in the face", he told Nine News.

"So when it happened I was like, 'Just do what Mick did, just punch it in the nose'". "Thank you very much".

Charlie told Australia's Daily Telegraph he felt something bump his right shoulder and instinctively turned to see what it was.

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Fry, a surfing novice, was surfing with three doctor friends when he was attacked. "I'll get to tell the story for the rest of my life".

He managed to fend the shark off with his left arm before scrambling back onto his board and bolt back into shore while also alerting his three friends.

"I didn't really notice it at the time because when you're surfing, all I'm thinking was: 'I'm about to die".

"Geez I don't know if I can tell mum, she might kill me", he added.

Fellow surfers took him to Gosford Hospital, where he was treated and released.

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Avoca Beach and North Avoca have been closed for 24 hours.

He said he would not be back in the sea for a week because of his injuries, but after that would be "racing to get back in".

The Briton thought the shark was up to six-feet long (1.5-1.8 metres), although a local helicopter rescue service said later that a three-metre great white and a three-metre bronze whaler shark were spotted off Avoca.

Fanning was competing at the J-Bay Open in South Africa two years ago when he was knocked off his board by a shark yet escaped unscathed.

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Shark hits surfer on NSW Central Coast