15 June 2013, Kuta-Bali: Under mostly gray skies but in pumping 4-6 foot Canggu today, Rounds 2 and 3 of the ASC sanctioned Oakley Pro Bali Trials were completed to decide the 8 quarterfinalists that will battle it for the ultimate prize of a wildcard entry into the ASP WCT Oakley Pro Bali, which will start on Tuesday June 18 at Keramas Beach in Gianyar.
After two days of competition at Canggu, the 24 wildcard candidates are now down to the final 8, who will face off at Keramas Beach on Monday June 17th to decide not only who will go on to the main event as the Indonesian wildcard entry, but also win $2,500 in first place prize money and receive 3,500 ASC championship points for this Premium event victory, courtesy of Oakley. The victor will be crowned at the Komune Resort Keramas on Monday afternoon, just prior to the Oakley Pro Bali press conference that will begin at 4:30 pm.
Round 2 started off as scheduled promptly at 8:30 am, with the competitors having the choice of surfing the Sand Bar left or the Rivermouth right. In Heat 1, veteran Rizal Tanjung chose to surf the left and was eventually rewarded with a barrel that got him 8.5 points and the heat win over Darmayasa. He would later be defeated in Round 3 by ASC president Tipi Jabrik.
Made “Bol” Adi Putra on the other hand, also a goofyfooter, chose to surf the righthander instead, and shut down fellow goofyfooter Mega Semadhi who surfed the Sand Bar. When asked why he replied, “I’ve surfed here a lot, and I’ve never had the righthander all to myself, so this was my chance to get every wave I wanted with nobody else out!”
The most fiercely contested heat of Round 2 was undoubtedly the dual between two Nusa Lembongan lads in Heat 2, where Agus Frimanto was pipped at the post by Wayan “Robot” Susiana in the final minute. Robot needed a score of more than 5.0 points to win, and with his last wave he pulled down 5.45 points and the heat win.
Round 3 had literally dozens of highlight reel candidates, starting with Wayan “Robot” Susiana narrowly defeating Mustofa Jeksen by less than half a point, then Putra Hermawan posting back to back wave scores of first 9.0 and then 8.0 points to combo Darmaputra Tonjo for the entire heat.
Made “Bol” Adi Putra shut down ASC number 1 ranked Garut Widiarta in Heat 4 to earn his quarterfinal berth, and Lee Wilson wowed the crowd on the beach with an amazing 360 aerial, posting the day’s highest single wave score of 9.25 points, almost a perfect score and also the day’s highest two wave heat score of 17.25 points (out of a possible 20) against a hard charging Gazali Hamzah in Heat 5.
Current ISC and ASC champ Raditya Rondi shut down 2011 ISC champ Marlon Gerber in Heat 7, an impressive feat for a goofyfooter at the Canggu righhander against a proficient stylist like Gerber. “It was kinda hard out there,” said Rondi after the heat. “There was lots of backwash and strong wind so I was just lucky to get better waves than Marlon I think.” When asked his thoughts about the upcoming quarterfinals at Keramas he replied, “I ‘m pretty nervous about the quarters at Keramas actually, because I think that wave is a little bit hard for me. I hurt my knee there a few months ago and its not yet 100 %, so we’ll see what happens on Monday. But I hope to do good.”
In the last heat of the day it was two powerful and aggressive surfers set up for an epic battle in challenging conditions, but Dede Suryana went right to work early and seemed to find the better waves, allowing him to post first an 8.0 score and then an 8.3, leaving Pepen Hendrik needing a combination of waves to win the heat for the last 10 minutes of the 25 minute heat. Final score; Suryana 16.30 – Hendrik 11.75.
“At the beginning of the heat I was a bit nervous,” said Suryana, “but after I got that first good score of 6.75 I was more comfortable, knowing I just needed one more good wave score. Turns out I got a couple more even better ones. Pepen is such a good surfer I didn’t take anything for granted. I knew I had to keep being aggressive.” When asked what he thought it would take to win the wildcard spot he replied, “I think the judges will be scoring barrels the highest of course, but it will also take being able to do good combinations of big turns and airs too. Hopefully I can put that together and be the wildcard winner on Monday.”
So with Round 3 now in the books, here is the quarterfinal lineup for Monday morning when the Oakley Pro Bali Trials competition will continue at Keramas Beach:
Quarterfinal 1: Wayan Susiana vs Putra Hermawan
Quarterfinal 2: Tipi Jabrik vs Made Adiputra
Quarterfinal 3: Lee Wilson vs Oney Anwar
Quarterfinal 4: Raditya Rondi vs Dede Suryana
See you at Keramas on Monday as the battle continues for that coveted Oakley Pro Bali wildcard spot, and follow the action on Facebook at Asian Surfing Championship (ASC) and at http://www.asiansurfingtour.com/events/oakleyprobali to see photos, videos, heat draws, scores and more.
The Oakley Pro Bali will be Stop No. 5 of 10 on the 2013 ASP World Championship Tour season and run from June 18 – 29, 2013 and will be webcast LIVE via www.oakleyprobali.com