The South Africa surfing team’s hopes of both a team and an individual medal at the 2013 Reef ISA World Surfing Games rest squarely on the shoulders of captain Shaun Joubert as the ‘Olympics of Surfing’ heads into the final day at Santa Catalina in Panama today (Sunday).

Joubert was the shining light for Team SA yesterday, posting the highest heat total in Men’s qualifying Round 5 to move within one heat of the Grand Final and a gold, silver, bronze or copper medal with a stellar display of high performance surfing in the crumbly 0.5 to one metre waves.

The rest of the team fought courageously until the end of every heat they contested to earn as many points towards the team total as possible before bowing out.

Kommetjie teammates Mikey February and Davey Brand finished equal 13th overall contributing 1 800 points each while David Van Zyl (Glenashley) ended his campaign in equal 16th place with a haul of 1 652 points.

Tanika Hoffman (Clifton), who produced several of the highest heat totals in the Women’s division during the event, had her charge halted in repercharge Round 5, placing equal 11th and earning 950 points, with Faye Zoetmulder (Cape St Francis) eliminated one round earlier in equal 13th place which added 900 points to the team tally.

With only one team member still in contention, Team SA slipped to fourth place overall in the provisional team standings behind Brazil, who have four (two men and two women), defending team champions Australia with one man and two women and Peru with one man and one woman heading into the final day.

The valuable contributions by the five South Africans eliminated in yesterday’s action leave Team SA over 1 500 points ahead of fifth placed Costa Rica who, along with Argentina, Chile, hosts Panama and Italy, all still have one team member chasing a medal.

Surfline, the official surf forecasters for the Reef ISA World Surfing Games, predict better surf for the final day with chest to head-high and occasional overhead waves, growing larger during the day, and light offshore winds in the morning, becoming onshore later.

The final day of the 2013 Reef ISA World Surfing Games starts with The Morning Show at 6:20am (1.20pm SA time) followed by the surfing action when conditions are suitable.

Reef ISA World Surfing Games (Santa Catalina, Panama)

Schedule for Final Day (SA surfers in brackets)

Open Women’s Repercharge 6
Open Men’s Repercharge 8
Open Women’s Qualifying 5
Open Men’s Qualifying 6 (Shaun Joubert)
Open Women’s Repercharge 7
Open Men’s Repercharge 9
Open Women’s Repercharge Final
Open Men’s Repercharge Final (TBD)
Final Women
Final Men (TBD)

All the action can be followed live via webcast at www.isawsg.com Additional news and images of Team SA can be found at www.surfingsouthafrica.co.za and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/surfing.sa

The 2013 South African surfing team has been provided with kit by RVCA.

Surfing South Africa (SSA) is the recognized governing body for the sport in South Africa. SSA is a member of the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) and the International Surfing Association (ISA)

Pictured: Team captain Shaun Joubert blasted his way into the final day of the of the 2013 Reef ISA World Surfing Games in Panama with manoeuvres like this yesterday.

Photo: ISA / Tweddle