Durban juniors show talent

2013-05-16 00:00

DURBAN’S New Pier beach hosts the Quicksilver Pro Junior and King of the Groms surfing event on Saturday and Sunday, when eight juniors from around the country will have a chance to tame the waves.

These surfers are part of the Future Stars programme, an initiative of Surfing South Africa to promote transformation and development in the sport.

Robin de Kock of Surfing SA said the programme gave young surfers a chance to compete on a national stage and gain invaluable experience and confidence.

“We are grateful to the sponsors for continuing with this idea every year, which does countless good for surfing and our future stars,” he said.

The eight juniors will surf against each other, with the winner seeded for the main event of the ASP Pro Junior main event.

One of the fancied surfers is Cape Town’s Dillon Fernandez. He has represented his province at the national championships and earned respect in the waves. However, he will have some solid talent from Durban to contend with. The local wave riders are used to the conditions and having the advantage of home surf.

One such surfer is Ntando Msibi, a product of the Umthombo Steet Children programme. He has found a niche for himself since taking on surfing and will no doubt make the most of this opportunity.

He is joined by fellow Durban surfers Simo Mkhize, Sihle Mbutho and Sifiso Mhlongo.

With Durban surfers making up half of the Future Stars field, it’s not too optimistic in predicting a home town finalist in the junior ranks.

Having competed in the competition before, former champion Brandon Benjamin of Cape Town will be keep to return to the top of the podium, while East London’s Nick Njapha and Avuyile Ndamase cannot be ignored. Ndamase is a product of Port St Johns’ Second Beach, moving to East London after his younger brother was taken by a shark at the beach.

Ndamase has represented Border and is a qualified coach.

These surfers get the event under way at 7.30 am on Saturday, with the final scheduled after the heats. Other divisions include the Pro Junior U20 plus the King of the Groms U16, U14 and U12 surfers.

There is R75 000 prize money on the line and the event is sanctioned by ASP Africa and Surfing SA.

Visit www.quikprojunior.co.za.

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