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Surfer punches great white shark off New Zealand beach

Feb. 26 (UPI) -- A 60-year-old surfer said he escaped from a great white shark off the New Zealand coast by repeatedly punching it in the eye.

Nick Minogue of Auckland said he was surfing at Pauanui Beach about 11:30 a.m. Saturday when a 10-foot great white shark bit the front end of his surfboard.

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"I was quite a long way out, there was quite a solid swell running, I was just paddling along and got hit on the side of my elbow and forearm," Minogue told the New Zealand Herald. "By the time I realized what was going on its teeth were definitely latched on to the front section of the board."

Minogue said he decided to fight the attacking predator.

"So I actually shouted at it '[expletive] off!' and went to punch it in the eye and missed," he said. "Then I pulled my fist back and shouted '[expletive] off!' again and got it right smack bang in the eye. It's quite a big eye, about three knuckles across, and it's eye kind of looked up and rolled up."

The surprised shark let go of Minogue's board, allowing him to paddle back to shore. Minogue said he was lucky to escape with a shallow cut to his arm. He said the shark's teeth made two punctures in his wetsuit, but only one broke the skin.

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Shark experts confirmed the bite mark on Minogue's board appears to have been made by a great white shark.

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