Day three of the Billabong Pro at J-Bay was another beauty, and a storybook one for the country of South Africa with Jordy Smith taking over the ASP ratings lead thanks to his buddy Sean Holmes, who is officially the most lethal wild card in ASP history now. On Saturday Holmes knocked out Kelly Slater and Andy Irons, clearing the path for Smith to take over.
All the highlights below starting with a quick wrap up package here. Followed by each of the Round Four heats.
The first big upset of the day was Sean Holmes beating 9-time world champion and current tour leader Kelly Slater. It was a wave starved heat, and Holmes, the ultimate J-Bay chess player, played his board just right to slip away with the win.
Damien Hobgood beat Mick Fanning, proving once again that he’s one of the best backsiders around at Jeffreys. It couldn’t have come at a better time for Hobgood, who’s been struggling a bit of late. He entered J-Bay sitting in the 23 slot, dangerously close to the cutoff. Meanwhile, Mick has yet to find his world champion form.
Dane Reynolds beats Brett Simpson, ending Brett’s best run so far this season. Brett looked like he was going to put up a fight early, but Dane motivated and turned in a solid performance.
Taj Burrow beats Tiago Pires, looking incredibly sharp on his equipment. Taj seems to be accelerating from 0 to 60 faster than anyone, and it’s paying off for him. Taj is now nipping right at Jordy’s heels.
Sean Holmes beat Andy Irons for the fourth time at J-Bay, just a few hours after sending Kelly Slater packing. Andy was livid after a water photographer got a little too close. If he can bottle the anger his comeback will get even more traction.
Bede Durbidge beat Matt Wilkinson, ending Wilko’s best run so far in 2010. Wilko looked solid in his earlier rounds but the unshakable Durbidge was all business.
Jordy Smith beat Owen Wright in what was arguably one of the best fought heats of the round. Both surfers were in top form entering the heat, making it one of the most anticipated match ups of the event. They didn’t disappoint either.
Adriano de Souza beat Ace Buchan in a slow moving heat that was a bit wave starved.