Women’s Quarterfinalists Decided as the Men Raise the Bar at the Oakley World Pro Junior

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High-octane surfing action continued at the Oakley World Pro Junior in Bali yesterday as three rounds of competition were completed in clean 3-4 ft waves at Canggu.

“Generation Next” again raised the high performance bar, dishing out a new-age flavor of progressive surfing in the peaky conditions on offer.

In all, Rounds 2 and 3 of the women’s and five Round 2 men’s heats were completed before surfing was suspended for the day.

The women’s action was nothing short of amazing with Malia Manuel (HAW) and Oakley’s Tyler Wright (AUS) and Sage Erickson (USA) leading the charge to the quarter-finals.

Hawaiian surfing ace Manuel inflicted the day’s biggest upset, eliminating 2009 ASP Women’s World Junior champion Pauline Ado (FRA) in their high scoring Round 3 showdown.

Manuel, 16, who shot to stardom after winning the US Open two years ago, found grace in the shifting beach break waves, finishing with a 17.90 two-wave total (out of a possible 20) to Ado’s 16.16.

“I haven’t had a good start to a heat in a long time,” she said. “There were just great waves out there this morning and I’m happy they run the girls. It’s good to be back in the competition jersey and surfing really contestable waves.”

Malia will now take on Oakley’s Sage Erickson (USA), who dispatched of Nao Omura (JPN), in the opening heat of Round 3.

Lakey Peterson (USA) and Oakley’s Tyler Wright (AUS) also dominated their Round 3 heats and will face off in the last quarter-final.

At the completion of the women’s action, the Round 2 men’s action hit the water for an entertaining afternoon of surfing before strong winds led Contest Director Beau Emerton to suspend competition for the remainder of the day.

Day four commenced with the remaining heats of the men’s division Round 2 and continued on to get through the first eight heats of Round 3 as well.

Setting the pace was Oakley super-star Nat Young (USA), who elevated the competition to a new level by scoring the event’s first perfect 10-point ride in the opening heat of Round 3.

After a slow start against Kaimana Jacquias (HAW), Young got busy, jagging a set wave before depositing a variety of powerful backhand moves to land a 9.47 (out of a possible 10).

“It was kind of a slow start,” he said. “We were both trying to hold position, but I kept getting the good waves. I felt I was in rhythm and focused on building bigger scores.”

The young Californian then asserted his dominance, performing a radical ‘Gorkin Flip’, a backside double grab inverted 360 air, to score a 10.00 and close the heat with the event’s highest combined heat total of a 19.47 (out of a possible 20).

“I try them a lot at home,” he said. “I’ve had a few big scores with them so I just went for it and got lucky. I was kind of nervous as the natural footers can do air reverses so easily out there.”

He’ll now take on Tyler Newton (HAW), who narrowly dispatched of Beyrick De Vries (ZAF), in Round 4.

No.1 seed Alejo Muniz (BRA) was the day’s biggest casualty, going down against Oakley’s Conner Coffin (USA) in the last heat of Round 3.

Coffin laid down a 14.90 total (out of a possible 20) to Muniz’ 13.60.

Other Round 3 standouts included Oakley’s Kolohe Andino (USA), Caio Ibelli (HAW), and Shaun Joubert (ZAF).

The contest will resume tomorrow at Kermas at 6:00 am.

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