Arugam Bay Sri Lanka: Yet another splendid day of surfing in sweltering heat on Sri Lanka’s lush south east coastline with the round of 24 completed and now just 16 surfers remain in the Association of Surfing Professionals 6-star rated SriLankan Airlines Pro.
Indonesia’s Dede Suryana was again in outstanding form and the 24 year-old west Javanese surfer is enthusiastic about his chances here.
“It is such a great wave and I’m getting more and more to know how the wave breaks and I really feel confident out there,” said Suryana after his impressive heat win defeating South Africa’s Ricky Basnett.
Wild card surfer Julian Wilson was also extremely impressive today again posting the days highest heat score with 15.60 (out of a possible 20) defeating and eliminating New Zealand’s Richard Christie.
Other’s to impress today included Dion Atkinson (AUS), Davey Cathels (AUS), Jayke Sharpe (AUS), Nat Young (USA) and Austin Ware (USA) while the number one and two seeds in Dan Ross and Drew Courtney are professionally destroying their opponents and look fully focused as we head into the final 16.
It really is the business end of the contest with 3 man heats surfed today and tomorrow it’s down to surfing’s purest competitive format with surfers paired off into man-on-man heats.
Australia’s Adam Robertson is no stranger to the man-on-man format with noteworthy results at Bells Beach over the years and he’s delighted to be through to the final 16.
“This wave will be really suited to the man-on-man heats,” said Robertson.
“The run around after you complete a wave has seen the inside position out here totally compromised in four-man heats but that’s gone and I actually think you’ll see performances rise significantly from here on in as each surfer chases and positions himself for the very best waves in each heat — they are calling for bigger and cleaner swells tomorrow and that’s exciting, not just for me but for all of us,” added Robertson.
Robertson faces a block buster heat against Julian Wilson tomorrow and with swells expected to be significantly larger it’s a much anticipated clash of two very precise and power driven surfers.
Hawaii’s flamboyant Mason Ho is also through and he’ll no doubt delight in the larger waves forecast.
Two day’s remain and organizers are looking to nurture this event through an epic finish aiming to run all remaining heats through the pristine morning conditions.
Round of 16 Heats:
1. Daniel Ross (AUS) V Hodie Collazo (SPAIN)
2. Chris Friend (AUS) V Nat Young (USA)
3. Austin Ware (USA) V Ricky Basnett (STH AFRICA)
4. Jayke Sharpe (AUS) V Dede Suryana (INDONESIA)
5. Julian Wilson (AUS) V Adam Robertson (AUS)
6. Rhys Bombacci (AUS) V Dion Atkinson (AUS)
7. Drew Courtney (AUS) V Romain Cloitre (FRANCE)
8. Mason Ho (HAWAII) V Davey Cathels (AUS)