There will be a huge match up in the elimination Round 2 of the Corona Open JBay as both 11 x world champ and two time event winner Jordy Smith fight for survival in Jeffreys Bay.
The Corona Open JBay started yesterday with the completion of men’s Round 1 and the first two heats of Round 2 in three-to-four foot waves at Supertubes.
The men made the most of the conditions with a full day of competition that included big announcements, wins, and performances to kick off the event window.
Joel Parkinson, 2012 WSL Champion and two-time event winner, announced his retirement this morning ahead of his opening Round 1 heat.
Parkinson’s first career win was at this event as a wildcard in 1999. Now, at the site of his first major victory, the 37-year-old earned the Round 1 win against current World No. 1 Julian Wilson and event wildcard Matthew McGillivray.
Wilson went on to battle Jeffreys Bay local McGillivray in Round 2 Heat 1. The nail-biting heat had the home crowd on their feet rooting for the local favorite, but the South African fell just 0.93-points short of defeating the Jeep Leader in his CT debut.
Filipe Toledo, defending event winner and current World No. 2, already set the bar at the Corona Open JBay with a near-perfect 9.17.
The Brazilian shot out of a deep barrel to earn the highest score of the day and skip the dreaded elimination Round 2.
“I am so happy to be back,” said Toledo. “JBay feels like home for me. The people are so welcoming and warm to me, that is one thing that makes me really comfortable.
I love the wave. Who doesn’t? It is good to be surfing perfect JBay again. The waves are not as big as last year, but perfect conditions and big barrels on the inside.
Last year was definitely one of the biggest wins of my career. It was a really special one and this event has the potential to be another really good one with good waves and good surfing.”
Frederico Morais, 2017 event runner-up, opened the day with a big win over South Africans Jordy Smith and Michael February.
Morais flew down the fast Supertubes sections to earn a 6.50 (out of a possible 10) and 5.43, giving him a 1.76-point lead over two-time event winner Smith.
Despite having the support from the crowd, Smith and February will need to win their elimination Round 2 matchups to avoid an early exit from the Corona Open JBay.
Men’s Corona Open J-Bay Round 1 Results:
Heat 1: Frederico Morais (PRT) 11.93, Jordy Smith (ZAF) 10.17, Michael February (ZAF) 7.24
Heat 2: Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 14.03, Michel Bourez (PYF) 13.67, Ian Gouveia (BRA) 6.66
Heat 3: Kanoa Igarashi (JPN) 13.50, Italo Ferreira (BRA) 11.94, Kelly Slater (USA) 8.73
Heat 4: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 11.83, Tomas Hermes (BRA) 7.83, Miguel Pupo (BRA) 6.73
Heat 5: Filipe Toledo (BRA) 13.84, Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 12.14, Wiggolly Dantas (BRA) 10.67
Heat 6: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 10.10, Julian Wilson (AUS) 9.90, Matthew McGillivray (ZAF) 9.86
Heat 7: Willian Cardoso (BRA) 12.30, Keanu Asing (HAW) 11.76, Ezekiel Lau (HAW) 11.06
Heat 8: Conner Coffin (USA) 16.14, Joan Duru (FRA) 15.67, Owen Wright (AUS) 12.73
Heat 9: Kolohe Andino (USA) 14.87, Mikey Wright (AUS) 13.26, Patrick Gudauskas (USA) 6.00
Heat 10: Yago Dora (BRA) 13.23, Adrian Buchan (AUS) 11.67, Adriano de Souza (BRA) 11.23
Heat 11: Griffin Colapinto (USA) 13.63, Wade Carmichael (AUS) 12.23, Jesse Mendes (BRA) 10.94
Heat 12: Jeremy Flores (FRA) 15.80, Connor O’Leary (AUS) 15.07, Michael Rodrigues (BRA) 10.96
Men’s Corona Open J-Bay Round 2 (H1-2) Results:
Heat 1: Julian Wilson (AUS) 14.43 def. Matthew McGillivray (ZAF) 13.50
Heat 2: Wiggolly Dantas (BRA) 11.77 def. Italo Ferreira (BRA) 9.73
Men’s Corona Open J-Bay Remaining Round 2 (H3-12) Matchups:
Heat 3: Michel Bourez (PYF) vs. Miguel Pupo (BRA)
Heat 4: Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. Kelly Slater (USA)
Heat 5: Owen Wright (AUS) vs. Ian Gouveia (BRA)
Heat 6: Adrian Buchan (AUS) vs. Michael February (ZAF)
Heat 7: Michael Rodrigues (BRA) vs. Keanu Asing (HAW)
Heat 8: Wade Carmichael (AUS) vs. Joan Duru (FRA)
Heat 9: Adriano de Souza (BRA) vs. Patrick Gudauskas (USA)
Heat 10: Mikey Wright (AUS) vs. Jesse Mendes (BRA)
Heat 11: Ezekiel Lau (HAW) vs. Connor O’Leary (AUS)
Heat 12: Tomas Hermes (BRA) vs. Matt Wilkinson (AUS)