13 September 2012, Patong Beach-Phuket: In a rain-shortened session on Day Two of the Quiksilver Open Phuket Thailand, the semifinalists of the Master’s Division were decided today with surfers from Australia, Thailand and Indonesia making it through their heats and will meet for their semifinal matchups and the final on Saturday.
The 16 over-35 year-old competitors put on impressive performances in the windy and sometimes rainy conditions, with the highest heat winning score of 13.25 points (out of a possible 20) being posted by Indonesia’s Wayan Widiarta in Heat 2.
Australian Michael Anthony had the second highest heat score of 10.25 points in Heat 1, where he and fellow Aussie Paul King both advanced to the semifinals.
Current ASC Master’s Champion Decha Sithidej was narrowly knocked out in Heat 1 by King, but as none of the other surfers that were threats to his crown showed up to complete in Thailand, his second Master’s Championship is now secure. He will receive his 2012 Asian Surfing Championship Master’s Championship trophy at the awards presentation this Saturday night.
Last year’s Quiksilver Open Phuket winner Wayan Gantiyasa from Indonesia just missed making it through to the semifinals, needing to score only 3.6 points to make it though. With just moments left in the heat he managed to find an open face and make a few turns, hoping it was enough but he came up just short with a score of 3.4 points.
Fellow Indonesian legend Made Lana, who hails from Uluwatu, won his heat, dispelling the rumors that he can only go left and only surf waves over 8 feet (3 meters). He was smiling all the way to the beach where he was congratulated by Gantiyasa.
Indonesian Surf legend Made Lana
In semifinal one on Saturday it will be Michael Anthony (AUS), Paul King (AUS), Wayan Widiarta (INA), and Prasertporn Kochak (THA), battling in out for the two spots in the final, and in semifinal two it will be Made Lana (INA), Yutaka Ono (THA), Graham Raisbeck (AUS), and Sean Gilhooley (AUS).
Several heats of the Round 1 Men’s Open were run as well today, but rain squalls had the competition suspended numerous times until the decision was made by Contest Director Quiksilver’s Tipi Jabrik to stop for the day. “It was getting a bit difficult for the judges to see with the rain and wind, and we’ve got plenty of time left so we elected to stop a early today and get going early tomorrow,” he explained. “We checked the weather forecast and it shows that today should be the worst of it, so tomorrow and going into the weekend looks to be much nicer with more sun and less rain. With the wind comes the swell, so we’re in good shape there for sure.”
A special thanks goes out the Hussain Areef and his crew from the Maldives for taking the initiative to pick up the fish netting and other trash that had been washed up on the beach overnight, so the contestants and spectators had a clean beach to enjoy during the day. Good on ya boys!
Look forward to some great action tomorrow as the swell picks up and the best surfers in Asia take to the waves of Phuket for Open Division action and begin their chase for not only the Quiksilver Open Phuket Thailand win but for more rankings points on the ASC tour, as this is the final event of the 2012 ASC tour season. Champions will be crowned on here at Patong Beach, so don’t miss the action in the water, on the beach, and at the party on Saturday night!
Quiksilver Open Phuket Thailand 2012: Day 1 Highlights
The Quiksilver Open Phuket Thailand is sponsored by Quiksilver Thailand, Yamaha, D.A.D., Nok Air, Chang, the Phuket Graceland Resort & Spa, and the Tourism Authority of Thailand, with partners the Phuket Province, the Patong Municipality, Phuket Best Event, and supported by Surfing Thailand, the Asian Surfing Championships, the Coca-Cola Indonesian Surfing Championships, Very TV, HOT FM, and the Green Channel. International media support provided by the ASC includes: Surfersvillage.com, MyLifeonBoard.net, Balibelly.tv, Baliwaves.com, Lines Magazine, SurfTime Magazine, Magic Wave Surf Community Newspaper, Royal Video Magazine, Alam TV Bali, and the Outdoor Channel.