12 August 2021, Kuta, Bali: Up against World Number 3 Filipe Toledo today in man-on-man Round 3 (Round of 32) action at the Corona Open Mexico presented by Quiksilver, needing a score of just 4.5 to win the heat and advance to Round 4 (Round of 16) and with only 20 seconds left, Indonesia’s first Olympic Surfer and event Wildcard Rio Waida took off on a wave and went to work, hammering turn after turn all the way to the beach, where he waited breathlessly to hear what the judges would give him…and a few seconds later was ecstatic to hear he’d earned 5.5 points and the heat win to advance to the Round of 16. Waida’s total score 11.33 to Toledo’s 10.23.
An amazing victory by the young Indonesian, over a seasoned and high ranked competitor who is one of the pro surfers that Waida admires, and who was touted at the beginning of the event as the most likely to win the event. This is only his second WSL Championship tour appearance, both as wild cards, and this is his best result. Let’s cheer him on to go all the way to the Final!