Former Australian surfer

Chris Davidson

has died after being punched in the face outside a pub in New South Wales, Australia.

The events occurred last Saturday, when the 45-year-old surfing icon received a blow to the head and fell to the ground, remaining unconscious.

Davidson was treated at the scene of the attack before being taken to Kempsey Hospital, where he later died.

Police arrested a 42-year-old man at his home in South West Rocks for the assault early Sunday morning,

The Guardian

reports .

The Australian became popular in 1996, when at the age of 19 he beat Kelly Slater

, the best specialist ever,

twice in a row .

"Lost another soldier yesterday. #RipChrisDavo. Had a lot of good fights with this guy," Slater wrote on Instagram.

Davidson began surfing on the beaches north of Sydney and competed on the professional world tour in 2010 and 2011. The surfing world is shocked by his loss.



was an incredibly talented surfer and a true individual in our sport and community. Our thoughts are with his two children, friends and family at this time," says Surfing Australia on Facebook.

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