2008 Reef Wetsuits South African Masters Champs
Surfing South Africa
Nahoon Reef, East London
12 - 15 June 2008
Nahoon Reef ready to host the 2008 Reef Wetsuits SA Masters Championships
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 11 June, 2008 : - - The fourth edition of the Reef Wetsuits South African Masters Championships will take place at Nahoon Reef in East London from Thursday June 12 to Sunday June 15 and over 100 surfers representing seven provinces will compete in the six divisions that make up an event that is growing in popularity.
This is the first time that host province and defending Team champions Border will get to perform at home and there is no doubt that they are aiming at taking the title for a second year in a row. 2007 over 40 division champion David Malherbe and his brother, fellow SA Masters Team member Andre, will compete in the over 40 Division and current ISA World Masters silver medalist Nick Pike is included in the over 45 age group.
Former two time SA Open Champion and defending over 35 champion Wayne Monk is also in the Border side and will be back to defend his title at his beloved Nahoon Reef. Other surfers who add value to the Border side are Gareth Sepp, Mike Brent, Brian Heathcote, Dave Fish, Pip Malherbe and Tristan Johnson.
Western Province were the runners up in 2007 and look a well balanced side but the withdrawal of 2007 Senior Men's champion Quintin Jones with an unfortunate ankle injury has left the Cape side with a mountain to climb. 2008 SA Masters team member Justin Healy will take Jones' place in the Senior Men's division and will also surf in the over 35 group along with Volker Mielck and Andrew Preen.
WP can also look to David Stubbs and Jeremy Zinn as possible finalists but it is going to take some supreme performances if they hope to beat the Border side.
Southern KZN, winners of the first SA Masters Championships in 2005 and third last year have included top PST surfer Gary Van Wieringen in their Senior Men's division while 2008 SA Masters team member Andrew Banks is competing in the over 35 group along with two time SA Champion and 2007 finalist Carl Roux. 2007 over 45 division finalist Peter Lawson is included in the SKZN side as is Darryl Adamson and Warren Wareing.
KZN finished last in 2007 but this time round they have put together a strong, well balanced team that is bound to challenge the favourites.
Included in their side is five time SA Open Champion and two time World Champion Chris Knutsen, 2007 SA Masters team members John McCarthy and Rudy Palmboom Snr, Rob Moore Boyle and Judge Olivier, who in 2007 won the right to drive a Peugeot for a year after his victory in the Peugeot Masters Cup.
Other surfers who will be hoping to enhance their reputations at Nahoon Reef this weekend are well known big wave exponent Mickey Duffus (Boland), Rob Pollock, Steven Hair, Archie Swanson and Colin Buitendag (all Southern Cape) and Mush Hide (Eastern Province).
The Reef Wetsuits SA Masters Championships comprises six divisions, namely Senior Men (Over 30), Masters (Over 35), Grandmasters (Over 40), Kahunas (Over 45), Grand Kahunas (Over 50) and Veterans (Over 55). The event crowns six individual champions and determines the top Provincial team. Each team members points will count towards the Provincial title, which was won by Southern KZN in 2005 and 2006 and by Border last year.
Teams will gather at Buccaneers for the Opening Function and the event will run from Thursday to Sunday June 15. On Monday June 16 national trials will be held to select a SA Masters Team which will defend the ISA World Masters title, won in Peru in March. Team lists and each day's results will be posted on surfingsouthafrica.co.za from Thursday June 12. Names of trialists will be posted on the website on Sunday June 15.
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