SA Masters Champs

chris_knutsen_phto watts SML

2012 SA Masters Surfing Championships

A premier Surfing South Africa tournament
Primary Venue : New Pier, Durban
Alternative venue : Cave Rock, the Bluff.
July 26 – 29

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BORDER TAKE THE SOUTH AFRICAN MASTERS CUP TITLE FOR THE SIXTH YEAR IN A ROW AS THEY POWER TO VICTORY AT THE SA MASTERS SURFING CHAMPIONSHIPS AT NEW PIER

Greg Emslie on his way to winning the Masters Title : Photo Karen Wilson

The highly motivated and well organised Border Masters surfing team dominated proceedings at the 2012 South African Masters Championships which ended in ideal 4 foot surf at Durban’s New Pier yesterday ( Sunday July 29).

Not only did they comprehensively win the interprovincial SA Masters Cup for the sixth consecutive year but they provided eleven of the 28 finalists and won two individual titles.

The two surfers from East London to take home gold were Greg Emslie, who moved up from the Over 30 Division which he won in 2011 to the Over 35 Masters group, and Tyrell Johnson who grabbed the Over 30 Seniors crown.

Emslie edged out defending champion Gary Van Wieringen of Southern KZN with Justin Maisch (SKZN) taking third and Mike Frew of Zululand finishing fourth.

Johnson was pushed hard by KZN surfer Lyle Bottcher but held on to win his first ever national title. Third was Tyrell’s brother Jethro (Border) with Neil Zietsman (Western Province) taking the fourth slot.
Although Border won the team title hosts KZN Central made up for their dismal last place in 2011 by finishing second overall and producing three individual champions.

Chris Knutsen defended his Grandkahunas (over 50) title in fine style and remains one of South Africa’s most consistent and evergreen champions. Knutsen has four South African Open titles to his name plus a number of age group titles and in recent years has added to World Championship gold medals to his name.

KZN team mate Judge Olivier was second, Dave Fish of Border came third and Fred le Roux (Zululand) was fourth.

Another surfer with a fantastic legacy is the newly crowned Kahunas (Over 45) champion, Marc Wright, a former South African Open Champion, a multiple age group national champion and a World Champion at the ISA World Masters Championships in 2009.

Wright beat defending champion David Malherbe (Border) into second place with another famous surfer of the 70’s and 80’s Mike Burness (KZNC) taking third. Richard Heath (Boland) came fourth in his first ever national final.

The third KZN Central gold medallist in this year’s SA Masters is Warren Dixon. Dixon came from behind in his Grandmasters (Over 40)) final against three Border surfers to snatch the title in the dying minutes of the heat.

This was Dixon’s first final in a National tournament. Andre Malherbe of Border led the heat from the outset but Dixon, who only caught his first wave nine minutes into the heat, posted a huge score in the dying minutes to take the honours. Malherbe came second, Andrew Fiebiger was third and Wayne Monk, who posted a 18.3 out of 20 heat score in his semi final, had to settle for fourth place in the final.

One of the loudest cheers at the Award ceremony was reserved for Leonard Giles of Southern Cape who won the Veterans (over 55) division with a backhand attack that he honed at Victoria Bay some three decades ago. Giles beat first time finalist Calla Esterhuysen (Zululand) into second spot with Border surfers Brian Heathcote and Gordon Harmer ending third and fourth respectively.

Tasha Mentasti, the winner of the Women’s Division represented Boland at this event but grew up surfing New Pier. Despite winning numerous provincial championships, featuring in many event finals and being capped for her country three times she had never won a South African title up until yesterday.

Despite being ill the day before the finals she managed to dominate the final and overcame the threat of defending champion and two time World Champion Heather Clark of Southern KZN with ease.

Bianca Bosman (Border) was third and first time finalist Julia Rutherford (Zululand) was fourth.

The 2012 SA Masters Championships was presented by Surfing South African and hosted by KZN Central Surfriders Association.
Surfing South Africa is recognized by the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) as the governing body for the sport in South Africa. Surfing South Africa is a member of the International Surfing Association (ISA).
2012 SA Masters Surfing Championships
New Pier, Durban

RESULTS

SA Masters Cup
1. Border 34110
2. KZN Central 30863
3. Zululand 24638
4. Western Province 23586
5. Southern KZN 20796
6. Boland 20488
7. Eastern Province 17254
8. Southern Cape 9856

Women (Over 30)
1. Tasha Mentasti (Boland)
2. Heather Clark (SKZN)
3. Bianca Bosman (Border)
4. Julia Rutherford (Zululand)

Senior Men (Over 30)
1. Tyrell Johnson (Border)
2. Lyle Bottcher (KZNC)
3. Neil Zietsman (WP)
4. Jethro Johnson (Border)

Masters (Over 35)
1. Greg Emslie (Border)
2. Gary Van Wieringen (SKZN)
3. Justin Maisch (SKZN)
4. Mike Frew (Zululand)

Grand Masters (Over 40)
1. Warren Dixon (KZNC)
2. Andre Malherbe (Border)
3. Andrew Fiebiger (Border)
4. Wayne Monk (Border)

Kahunas (Over 45)
1. Marc Wright (KZNC)
2. David Malherbe (Border)
3. Colin Buitendag (SC)
4. Richard Heath (Boland)

Grand Kahunas (Over 50)
1. Chris Knutsen (KZNC)
2. Judge Olivier (KZNC)
3. Dave Fish (Border)
4. Fred Le Roux (Zululand)

Veterans (Over 55)
1. Leonard Giles (Southern Cape)
2. Calla Esterhuysen (Zululand)
3. Brian Heathcote (Border)
4. Gordon Harmer (Border)

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Top performances on the first two days of the 2012 SA Masters Surfing Championships at New Pier in Durban

Despite difficult, small surf and strong winds South Africa’s older generation of surfers gave it their all on the first two days of the eighth annual South African Masters Surfing Championships at New Pier in Durban.

Heather Clark Defending Champion at the 2012 SA Masters Championships

Surfers from as young as 31 to well over 60 are representing eight provinces in this popular tournament which reaches its climax with all seven finals on Sunday.

Some of the standout performances on the first two days of competition came from former two time World Masters Champion and 2011 South African champion Heather Clark (Southern KZN) and two of last year’s finalists in this division Tasha Mentasti (Boland) and Michelle Van Kempen (EP). Three time SA Champion and former ASP World Tour surfer Greg Emslie (Border) posted a 17 point score out of a possible 20 in his second round Masters (Over 35) heat which is the highest score of the event so far. Other surfers who impressed the judges in this division were two Southern KZN surfers, Ben Roberts and Gary Van Wieringen.

In the “youngest” division Lyle Bottcher (KZN Central) and Alan Johns (Zululand) posted high scoring rides in their first round heats while Tim Kanigowski (WP), a champion surfer of the 60’s showed his class with an 8.5 wave score in the Over 55 (Veterans) division on Day two.

Grandmaster (Over 40) round one performances came from John Mc Carthy (KZN Central) and Gareth Sepp ( Border) while in the Over 45 (Kahunas) division former World and South African champion Marc Wright (KZN Central) and multiple South African Champion David Malherbe (Border) were the pick in this group.

Glen Row (Western Province) and Judge Olivier (KZN Central) dominated the Over 50 (Grandkahunas), both posting wave scores in excess of 7 out of 10 to dominate this competitive division so far.

The 2012 SA Masters Championships will decide seven individual champions and determine the top Provincial team. Each team member’s points will count towards the Masters Cup, which was won by Southern KZN in 2005 and 2006 and by Border in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011.

The 2012 SA Masters Championships will conclude with the seven finals on Sunday. The Award ceremony will take place at New Pier straight after the last final.

Heats are posted on www.surfingsouthafrica.co.za and each day’s results will be available from 8pm on this website.

Surfing South Africa is recognized by the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) as the governing body for the sport in South Africa. Surfing South Africa is a member of the International Surfing Association (ISA).
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New Pier in Durban is the primary venue for the 2012 SA Masters Surfing Championships this week

The eighth annual South African Masters Surfing Championships will take place at Durban’s New Pier starting this Thursday with the finals in the six divisions scheduled for Sunday.

Although New Pier has been selected as the primary venue for the championships, Cave Rock on the Bluff is an alternative if conditions are suitable at this famous big wave spot.

Over 160 surfers from eight provinces are making their way to Surf City for this popular tournament which features surfers from as ‘young’ as 31 to over 60 years of age.

Border, the defending champions and five time winners of the Masters Cup, have assembled a side that looks almost unbeatable. However hosts KZN Central, who sent a small team to East London last year and finished in an uncomfortable last place, will be aiming to rectify this.

KZN Central have assembled a team that could upset the powerful Border side who have dominated this segment of South African surfing over the past five years. Other strong teams include Western Province, Zululand and Boland, all of whom have the required number of surfers in each of the divisions.

Last year’s Over 30 Division (Seniors) champion, Greg Emslie (Bor), has moved up into the Over 35 (Masters) age group where he will challenge defending champion Gary Van Wieringen (SKZN) for the title.

2011 Over 40 (Grandmasters) winner Kevin O’Brien (Bor) will be competing in the O35 Division this year and is good enough to upset the form books while Graeme Field (WP) is the pick of the rest.

With O’Brien out of the mix in the O40 group, Border trio Wayne Monk, Andre Malherbe and Gareth Sepp, all finalists in 2011 should be regarded as favourites. But Carl Roux (SKZN) and KZN Central surfers John McCarthy and Rob Moore-Boyle are New Pier locals and could upset the Border dominance.

Defending O45 (Kahuna) Champion, David Malherbe (Bor), will be aiming for his umpteenth National title this year but will come up against former World Champion Marc Wright (KZNC) and team mate Mike Burness in what looks to be an exciting division.

Multiple SA Champion, triple World Champion and defending O50 (Grandkahuna) champion, Chris Knutsen (KZNC), will get the chance to show his skills at his beloved New Pier this year. He is such a tough competitor that it seems unlikely that anyone will be able to challenge him but stranger things have happened. Knutsen’s toughest test should come from 2011 O55 (Veterans) champion Dave Fish (Bor), Bushy Greeff and Grant Read (both Zul) and Kurt Buchner (EP).

There will be a new O55 (Veterans) SA Champion this year as Dave Fish is competing in another division. Best bets here are Mike Larmont (KZNC), Jeremy Zinn (WP) and Brian Heathcote (Bor).

In the Women’s Division (O30) Heather Clark (SKZN) will defend her title against 2011 runner up Michelle Van Kempen (EP), Tasha Mentasti (Bol) and Carolyn Dent (WP). Bianca Bosman (Bor), Tarryn Adamson (KZNC) and Julia Rutherford (Zul) are the other surfers competing in this division.

The 2012 SA Masters Championships will decide seven individual champions and determine the top Provincial team. Each team member’s points will count towards the Masters Cup, which was won by Southern KZN in 2005 and 2006 and by Border in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011.

Teams in the SA Masters Championships will gather at 7pm at the Marine Surf Lifesavers Club on Wednesday for the Opening Function at 7pm. The first rounds will get under way at 8am on Thursday July 26.

Heats are posted on www.surfingsouthafrica.co.za and each day’s results will be available from 8pm on this website.

Surfing South Africa is recognized by the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) as the governing body for the sport in South Africa. Surfing South Africa is a member of the International Surfing association (ISA).