(Kuta-Bali, June 18, 2008): After smashing the competition in his Round One heat with a total score of 19.0, Dean Iezzi from the Sunshine Coast in Australia again dominated in his Round Two heat by getting the day’s only perfect score, a long and throaty five-second barrel to the hoots and cheers of the spectators and crew on the beach.
Keramas Beach in Gianyar-Bali was at as close to perfection as gets today, with solid 4-6 sets launching themselves onto the black lava reef, opening up some epic barrels for the boys to drop into and seek find their way out of. After his heat win in Round 1 Iezzi had this to say. “So good, maybe once a year in a comp in Australia you get waves even close to this! So happy to be here and get some waves like this.”
The day started out at 7:25 a.m. with Donovan Zoetmulder from South Africa coming out charging, convincingly winning Heat One. Some periods of rain and clouds blew through early but the sun eventually made its appearance and created picture perfect smooth and glassy waves for the high quality international field of Pro Juniors waiting on the beach.
Heat two saw the peak of the tide, but barrels were still to be had. Billy Kean posted an early 8.33 and jumped to the lead, then held off a last minute charge by Dan Moore.
Billabong Malaysia’s pro junior entrant Mamat from Cherating was surfing a bit over his head in the big backside barrels, quite a stretch from his local break, a two kilometre long sand bottom left-hander, but he held his end up and made it into Round 2.
Dean Iezzi was absolutely on fire in Heat five, the sun coming out to highlight his first pristine Keramas tube that scored a 9.33. He followed it up with an even better wave only five minutes later, a 9.67. “Last year I didn’t make it over here to compete, but this year I’m trying to build my profile so thought I’d come here for some good waves.” And he definitely got some. Iezzi is currently ranked 10th in the Pro Juniors in Australia.
Heat eight was the most tightly contested heat in the event, with Brendan Leckie starting things out followed closely by David Vlug and a charging Jayke Sharp. Less than two points separated the surfers all the way to the closing horn, but Leckie held them off to win the heat
Round 2 started out with an exciting exchange between Australian junior hot shot Sam Wrench (Ulladulla) and South African Donovan Zoetmulder in the opening minutes of the heat. Both were charging, but Wrench locked into a beauty with only a few minutes to go, getting an 8.67 to seal the deal. “Last year I got knocked out in the second round here, so this year I’m not wanting that to happen again,” said Wrench. “With these waves I reckon it’s as good it gets, so I’ll be giving it a good go again tomorrow.”
Putra Hermawan from Nusa Lembongan was the standout Indonesian surfer, convincingly winning his heat with a combination of small long barrels and hacking the lips all the way to the inside. The waves kept pumping as the tide was going out, getting a bit smaller but still offering up some great opportunities. Round 2 was completed at 1 p.m. with the surf still going off.
Round 3 action will start early Thursday morning with the swell expected to drop slightly overnight but still offering up the same quality waves seen today. Last year’s series winner Heath Joske will start things off in Heat one, with other top ranked Pro Juniors including Billabong’s Madison Williams and from Indonesia Raditya Rondi, Made “Garut” Widiarta, Mustafa Jeksen, and Agus Purnawan getting into action.
The Billabong Pro Junior Series is supported by Discovery Kartika Plaza, Hawaiian Tropic Suncare, Nixon, Kustom, and Von Zipper.
About The Billabong Pro Junior Series:
The Billabong Pro Junior Series is sanctioned by the Coca-Cola Indonesian Surfing Championships as part of the Pro Junior Championshhip Division. The series is the most lucrative on the Indonesian calendar, attracting surfers from Australia, Indonesia, USA, Hawaii, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Africa, and Europe.
In line with the ISC’s goal of seeing talented young Indonesian surfers on the WQS and eventually on the WCT, Billabong is delighted to be an integral part of attaining this goal, as the Billabong Pro Junior Series is widely recognized as the premiere career booster for surfers aged 20 and under with world renown surfers such as Andy Irons and Joel Parkinson having launched their careers with wins at the Billabong ASP World Junior Championships.
2008 Billabong Junior Series
June 18-22: Billabong Pro Junior Series Keramas
July 9-13: Billabong Pro Junior Series Kuta Reef
August 13-17: Billabong Pro Junior Series Canggu
August 13-17: Billabong Occy’s Grom Comp Canggu