It was a beautiful winter’s day in Surf City for Day 1 of the Quiksilver Pro Junior at New Pier. Unfortunately the only thing missing were the waves, which were coming through just big and consistent enough to make things competitive. South swells and Durban just don’t work out so great with the harbour’s South Pier blocking off most of what’s on offer. But if you’re one of the country’s best junior surfers, a weak lip is all you need to showcase your repertoire.
The biggest news from the day was Slummies shredder Avuyile ‘Avo’ Ndamase claiming the Future Stars title ahead of Nicky Njapha (Southport), Papi Makinyane (Kommetjie) and Sfiso Mhlongo (Durban). Avo showed the skills he learnt at his homebreak of Second Beach in Port St Johns (which is sadly also the beach which saw his younger brother Zama Ndamase fatally attacked by a shark in 2011. ). Now living in East London, Avo’s been working hard at his surfing and his win today saw all his hard graft pay off.
Defending champ Slade Prestwich put in a solid performance in the small and weak conditions, punting a few airs and burying enough rail to advance to the final day, and closer to defending the title he clinched from Beyrick De Vries in 2012.
Another surfer looking like a champ on Day 1 was North Coast surfer Shane Sykes, who was burying some serious rail for a young gun in the King of the Groms division. You also can’t count out J-Bay’s Matt Macgillivray, who put on a solid display on the opening day to advance to the final day. Matt’s just recently recovered from a knee injury which kept him out the water for a number of months, but has quickly got into the rhythm that saw him claim the SA title in home waters at the end of 2012.
There’s a slight bump in swell predicted for Sunday, and the bank at New Pier is as good as it gets, so if you’re in Town, head on down and watch the juniors shred – otherwise you can catch all the highlights and action on www.quikprojunior.co.za.
Here’s the highlights from Day 1:
Check out the official press release below.
AVUYILE NDAMASE SHINES AT QUIKSILVER PRO JUNIOR 2013
New Pier, Durban – Action was hot on day one of the Quiksilver Pro Junior & King of the Groms 2013 as South Africa’s best junior surfers under the age of twenty years old were greeted with small, clean and contestable surf. Avuyile Ndamase from East London stole the show in the Future Stars division, ousting Nicky Njapha (Southport), Papi Makinyane (Kommetjie) and Sfiso Mhlongo (Durban). Ndamase fought back in the dying minutes of the twenty minute final to pip Njapha to the title. “I am so stoked to be in Durban again, the water is warm and the surfing is good,” said an elated Ndamase. The Future Stars division forms part of the annual Quiksilver Pro Junior and is an initiative put together by Quiksilver and Surfing South Africa’s transformation program.
The top performances of the morning came from Shane Sykes (Salt Rock) and Matt McGillivray (Port Elizabeth) with near-perfect single wave scores.
Sykes stamped his authority on his opening under sixteen heat by posting a massive nine point ride out of a possible ten points, this he backed up with a solid six point ride. “The waves were really fun today and the sandbanks at New Pier are unreal. I am looking forward to the rest of the competition, ” said an excited Sykes.
McGillivray was another standout, he posted two massive scores in his opening heat, scoring a 9.5 and 7.5 out of a possible ten points for his top two rides. Other surfers to impress in the early rounds of the U16 division were Adin Masencamp (Strand) and Steff Burrows (Cape Town). Divisions in the event include the under twelve, under fourteen, under sixteen and the under twenty Pro Junior divisions.
Surfing gets underway at 08h00 tomorrow morning (Sunday) with the under fourteen division quarter finals. Light winds, sunny skies and clean 3 foot surf is expected for the final day of competition. The finals for all four divisions kick off at 14h00 with the awards ceremony and crowning of the kings at 15h15 on the beach at New Pier.
The entire event boasts a total of R75 000 in prize money and is sanctioned by ASP Africa and Surfing South Africa. Sponsors include the City of Durban, Skullcandy, Red Bull and Independent on Saturday.
More information can be found at www.quikprojunior.co.za