April 22, Keramas-Bali: Day two of the competition saw Rounds 3 and 4 run today in, well… at times epic and at times trying conditions.
The dawn patrol crew was already out in the water at 6:15 am, getting in the early morning light, with some tasty 2-3 foot kegs coming in sets every 5 minutes or so. A bit different than the previous day, so everyone was amped to get out and warm up in the near perfect conditions. MC Cookie called them all back to the beach at 7 and the first heat of Round 3 got off right at 7:15.
Last year’s winner and 2007 ISC Champion Lee Wilson left no question as to his desire to make it two-in-a-row, slotting into a nice barrel with his first wave and jumping into the lead. He sealed it with two more, coming into the beach clearly dominating. Young Putra Hermawan from Lembongan followed suit with a couple nice barrels of his own, advancing with Lee to Round 4.
ISC CEO Tipi Jabrik and young Lembongan kid Agus Frimanto advanced over Rahtu Suargita and Ketut Sudarsana, Made “Bol” Adi Putra and the older brother of Putra Hermawan, Agus Purnawan, advanced, as did Raditya Rondi and Ketut Swartana.
By Heat 5 (around 8:30) the wind started to turn on shore but the wave size also increased, with occasional 4 foot plus sets coming in. A fresh-off-the-plane from Oz Rizal Tanjung and (just back from 6 months in Oz) Joey Barrel advanced, as did an on-fire Ketut “Kombong” Juliarta and Dede “Slater” Suryana. Devis Ratif and Pepen Hendrik have been spending a lot of time at Keramas and it paid off, as both of them make it to the next round by knowing just how to handle any type of waves that Keramas threw at them. Round 3 wrapped up with Wayan “Gobleg” and Dedy Santoso making it to Round 4 in the by now testing high tide and windy conditions.
Round 4 was run in a man-on-man format, with semi-clean wave faces and solid 4-foot waves but strong on-shore wind. Lee again jumped into the lead, picking apart a couple before launching an air-reverse 360 that left Ketut Swartana too far behind to catch up.
Tipi and Kombong had a close contest, with both of them smashing the lip and throwing spray all over, but Tipi came out on top. Bol went blow-for-blow with a hard charging Dedy Santoso, beating him by just the slimmest of margins. Agus Frimanto came out of the gates full on, but goofy footer Raditya Ronde didn’t let him get too far ahead before he put the pedal to the metal and passed Agus midway through the heat to take the lead and eventually the win.
Rizal took down Devis, who couldn’t seem to find that one good wave to let loose on, and Dede had Joey Barrel combo’d in about 5 minutes, due to both Dede’s talent and the lack of barrels for poor Joey pull into. Pepen surfed like a man possessed, intent upon creaming the tops off of ever piece of lip he could find, and Agus Purnawan had fire in his eye also, so it was a great natural footer matchup that was fun to watch. At the end the more experienced Pepen came to the beach knowing he would surf again tomorrow.
In the final heat of the round that took place at just after 12:30 with a weakening swell, outgoing tide, and now howling onshore winds, in a surprise upset young Putra Hermawan found a few nice little waves to rip apart on the inside to take a quick lead over Gobleg, who struggled to find anything that would give him a chance operate on. Frustrating for sure, but that’s contest surfing, and when the horn blew the 15 year old Putra was all smiles, as this is the first time he’s made it into the quarterfinals in a six star ISC event.
Tomorrow’s quarterfinals will start at 7 am, so pray for more swell and for the wind to hold off. The matchups will be:
Quarterfinal 1: Lee Wilson vs Tipi Jabrik
Quarterfinal 2: Made “Bol” Adi Putra vs Raditya Ronde
Quarterfinal 3: Rizal Tanjung vs Dede Suryana
Quarterfinal 4: Pepen Hendrik vs Putra Hermawan