Live footage shows Fanning being startled by the shark, which initially chewed off his surfboard's leg rope.
“It came up and got stuck in my leg rope,” Fanning told News.com.au. “I instantly just jumped away. It kept coming at my board and I was kicking and screaming. I just saw fins. I didn’t see teeth. I was waiting for the teeth to come at me. I punched it in the back.”
The World Surf League called off the day's event, called the J-Bay Open, after its deputy commissioner Renato Hickel confirmed two sharks were in the water.