Desperation Mode: Mundaka Barely Breaks But the Heats Go On

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Check out the reports from Round 1, Round 2, Round 3

EVENTS HELD: Heats 8-13 of Round 3
CONDITIONS: 2 feet and barely breaking
NATURE’S CALL: Hopefully some waves Thursday and Friday
PREDICTIONS: Huge showdowns ahead

When only one heat in good waves was run yesterday I thought was bad, but today was worse. Every heat was awful. How bad was it? So bad that Kelly Slater, Andy Irons and Taj Burrow had close calls against Hodei Collazo, Yuri Sodre and Adrian Buchan. Even worse was watching grizzled vet Jake Paterson seeing his WCT career come to a likely end after catching only a single one foot wave (the sets were two feet) in his encounter with Phil McDonald. Brutal stuff. You know the dream tour isn’t so dreamy when a heat drags on without a single wave breaking for twenty minutes.

Kelly’s match against Collazo probably offered the best conditions of the day and if Collazo had not fallen on the only legitimate tube in sight, the end result might have been different. Andy struggled as well and had to bite his nails as time ticked away and Sodre, holding priority, only needed a 3.83. Andy ended up getting a wave at the horn that he bashed to submission and which sealed the deal for him. Taj, in full QS warrior mode, had an easier time with Buchan, but with Ace only needing a high 7 at the end, it was touch and go for him as well.

So the top five are still alive and that’s a good thing. Had Kelly, Andy or Taj lost today in the piddly waves it would have been a total bummer.

With even smaller surf predicted for tomorrow we’re not expected to run again until the next expected pulse hits on Thursday and Friday. But will it be any good? That’s anyone’s guess. The tide windows on all swells under 6 feet work like this: good for an hour after low tide and f–ked the rest of the day. How we’re going to get through 18 more heats in two days when it’s taken eight to run 40 is anyone’s guess.

And me? I just went to France where it was four foot and oily glass at Hossegor, so I’m now a lot happier than any one of the boys who had to compete at Mundaka.

Round three heat results: (1st to round four 2nd receives 17th placing and 410 ratings points)

Heat 1: Joel Parkinson (Aus) 19.70 def. Jarrad Howse (Aus) 8.27
Heat 2: Bruce Irons (Haw) 13.84 def. Luke Stedman (Aus) 7.66
Heat 3: Victor Ribas (Bra) 11.27 def. {{{CJ}}} Hobgood (Aus) 10.84
Heat 4: Mick Fanning (Aus) 18.00 def. Toby Martin (Aus) 15.00
Heat 5: Pancho Sullivan (Haw) 15.10 def. Tim Reyes (USA) 13.34
Heat 6: Tom Whitaker (Aus) 17.27 def. Chris Ward (USA) 13.67
Heat 7: Cory Lopez (USA) 12.17 def Travis Logie (ZAF) 10.34
Heat 8: Kelly Slater (USA) 14.33 def Hodei Collazo (EUK) 12.23
Heat 9: Andy Irons (HAW) 11.76 def Yuri Sodre (BRA) 10.60
Heat 10: Trent Munro (AUS) 13.73 def Shaun Cansdell (AUS) 12.96
Heat 11: Bobby Martinez (USA) 15.17 def Peterson Rosa (BRA) 12.94
Heat 12: Phil MacDonald (AUS) 10.33 def Jake Paterson (AUS) 4.67
Heat 13: Taj Burrow (AUS) 15.00 def Adrian Buchan (AUS) 12.23

Remaining round three heats:

Heat 14: Greg Emslie (ZAF) vs Adriano de Souza (BRA)
Heat 15: Damien Hobgood (USA) vs Mikael Picon (FRA)
Heat 16: Dean Morrison (AUS) vs Michael Lowe (AUS)

Round four heat draw so far: (1st to Quarterfinals 2nd receives equal 9th place and {{{600}}} ratings points)

Heat 1: Joel Parkinson (AUS) vs Bruce Irons (HAW)
Heat 2: Victor Ribas (BRA) vs Mick Fanning (AUS)
Heat 3: Pancho Sullivan (HAW) vs Tom Whitaker (AUS)
Heat 4: Cory Lopez (USA) vs Kelly Slater (USA)
Heat 5: Andy Irons (HAW) vs Trent Munro (AUS)
Heat 6: Bobby Martinez (USA) vs Phil MacDonald (AUS)