Jeffreys Bay, South Africa (Monday, July 3, 2000). World number 12-rated surfer Jake Paterson (Aus) today posted the highest single wave and combined total heat score of the Billabong MSF Pro so far to eliminate Brazilian Neco Padaratz. Using priority to his advantage, the 27-year-old Paterson picked off the wave of the heat to earn 9.80 out-of-a possible 10-points, executing a critical floater and disappearing within the barreling section of the wave only to emerge much further down the reef break.
Paterson, the 1998 Pipe Masters champion, put his barrel riding skills to good use in the 3-5 ft (1.5 m) offshore conditions, surfing his way through numerous hollow sections along the reef to build his high tally. When the wind changed mid-way and caused wave faces to be more difficult to ride, his lead was already virtually secured.
"That heat fell together better than any other heat I've had all year," acknowledged Paterson. "I got a quick one off the bat and then it was all glassy and he (Padaratz) took a bad wave, so I had priority for the wave of the heat. I got a really, really good one and scored a 9.8. Then I picked up another one on the way back out, so I had three really good scores. Then the onshore wind came which pretty much made it impossible for him to catch me 'cause when the wind comes up it's so much harder to surf. I'm stoked."
Current world number two Luke Egan (Aus) was another high scorer today when he defeated young South African wildcard entrant David Weare. Egan, who took out the last World Championship Tour (WCT) event in Fiji a month ago, showed his ability to win on his backhand is no less polished than the forehand attack that earned him his recent victory.
"It was pretty bumpy and I wasn't going to make the mistake of not making it around all the sections," explained Egan afterward. "I decided to charge down the line at the beginning of the wave and then do my turns down the line… it worked well.
"David surfs really good," he continued. "I saw him free-surfing the first day of the contest and I actually asked Occy (world champion Mark Occhilupo) who it was, I was really impressed with his surfing. So I was feeling a little bit of pressure before the heat, but he's a good surfer and I hope he learns from the experience of being in a bigger event."
Brazilian Flavio Padaratz, older brother to Neco, was another top-rated surfer to progress through the second round. Up against young South African wildcard entrant Simon Nicholson, the current world number four selected better waves in the low-tide conditions to advance.
"It was kind of a weird heat 'cause the waves were really bumpy at the end section," said Padaratz. "On your backhand, especially for me as I surf a lot off my back-foot, the nose of my board was flapping and you can lose control a lot. I was having a hard time, but Simon was too. I just put all my concentration on selecting the right waves, which was crucial out there today."
Hawaiian Andy Irons caused an upset today when he eliminated current world number-nine Luke Hitchings (Aus). Irons, who was a member of the top 44 in 1999 but failed to re-qualify for the 2000 WCT by the slimmest of margins, was granted a start in this event after two-time world champion Damien Hardman (Aus) elected not to compete at Jeffreys. The Hawaiian will now face world champion Mark Occhilupo (Aus) when round three gets underway.
"My first wave was a bad choice, then I got two right in a row," explained Irons. "Luke started catching a few bad waves and I ended up waiting and on that sick set I got an eight, and he ended up with an 8.75 on the next wave. He just didn't have a third wave.
"There's no pressure right now," added the Hawaiian. "I'm just kind of free-surfing."
A decision will be made tomorrow morning at 7am (local time) as to the event's schedule. At least three full days are still needed to finish both the men and women's division, with six days remaining in the waaiting period.
Official Results of Billabong MSF Pro Men's Round Two
Heat 1: L Egan (Aus) 22.50 def. D Weare (SAfr) 11.85Heat 2: C Lopez (USA) 18.25 def. D Morrison (Aus) 15.00Heat 3: F Padaratz (Brz) 18.25 def. S Nicholson (SAfr) 12.90Heat 4: G Herdy (Brz) 13.00 def. D Rastovich (Aus) 9.00Heat 5: A Irons (Haw) 20.75 def. L Hitchings (Aus) 20.15Heat 6: V Ribas (Brz) 19.15 def. C Hayes (Haw) 15.60Heat 7: J Paterson (Aus) 24.30 def. N Padaratz (Brz) 12.40Heat 8: CJ Hobgood (USA) 17.00 def. P Canning (SAfr) 15.45Heat 9: M Lowe (Aus) 16.35 def. R Winter (UK) 16.00Heat 10: P Rosa (Brz) 18.80 def. P O'Connell (USA) 11.75Heat 11: T Curran (USA) 17.65 def. F Gouveia (Brz) 13.50Heat 12: D Hobgood (USA) 18.50 def. T Prestage (Aus) 18.00Heat 13: S Lopez (USA) 20.30 def. G Ringrose (Aus) 19.25Heat 14: Y Sodre (Brz) 17.90 def. T Knox (USA) 16.50Heat 15: S Powell (Aus) 19.85 def. S Sutton (Haw) 17.50Heat 16: R Rocha (Brz) 20.35 def. A Daltro (Brz) 18.40
Upcoming Round Three MatchesHeat 1: N Webster (Aus) vs. Y Sodre (Brz)Heat 2: C Lopez (USA) vs. D Wills (Aus)Heat 3: CJ Hobgood (USA) vs. R Machado (USA)Heat 4: L Egan (Aus) vs. K Malloy (USA)Heat 5: M Campbell (Aus) vs. G Emslie (SAfr)Heat 6: G Herdy (Brz) vs. R Lovett (Aus)Heat 7: P Rosa (Brz) vs. T Curran (USA)Heat 8: S Garcia (Haw) vs. S Holmes (SAfr)Heat 9: M Occhilupo (Aus) vs. A Irons (Haw)Heat 10: B Emerton (Aus) vs. D Hobgood (USA)Heat 11: F Padaratz (Brz) vs. R Williams (Haw)Heat 12: V Ribas (Brz) vs. R Rocha (Brz)Heat 13: T Burrow (Aus) vs. J Parkinson (Aus)Heat 14: M Lowe (Aus) vs. S Lopez (USA)Heat 15: S Dorian (Haw) vs. K Robb (Haw)Heat 16: J Paterson (Aus) vs. S Powell (Aus)