|Bittersweet Matchups for Californian Competitors
Heat 4 was a must-win situation for Conner Coffin who needed a result against American Griffin Colapinto to stay on the CT for 2022. However, Colapinto’s excellent wave selection was able to secure him a spot in the Round of 16, and ended Coffin’s bid for the 2022 Championship.
“That was the most brutal matchup I could have ever imagined,” said Colapinto. “Conner is probably the last person I wanted to draw, just because we’re such good friends and he’s been on tour three years before I got on and everywhere I would go I would hit him up for questions about where to go and he would always give me advice on what to do. I was just super bummed that I had to match up with him there because I know he’s on the cut line but we both have our own goals and I’ve got to put that to the side once we’re in the water and I think he might have got cut on that heat so hopefully he can go to Snapper and win that.”
Nat Young (USA) was set to defend his position on the CT tour in Heat 10 against rookie Jake Marshall (USA) in the large choppy conditions at Margaret RIver. Leading the rankings for the whole heat, Young was a standout surfer of the day, competing with confidence and drive to earn him a combination score of 16.10 (out of a possible 20).
“I just kind of winged it out there,” said Young. “I mean, it’s really fun, I enjoy kind of challenging myself in these unruly conditions when it’s just kind of you verse the ocean and I lucked into that wave, not right at the start but early on and kind of just carried that momentum through so it was a fun heat, I was stoked. [Margeret River] is similar waves to at home for sure, there’s a wave that we kind of surf when it’s similar to this so it has similarities so I enjoy coming to watch in Australia it’s definitely one of the most beautiful places we get to come, so I’m lucky I’ve done well here and I’m hoping to do good this time around too.”
Heat 5 was filled with drama and tense moments for former World No. 1 Kanoa Igarashi (JPN) and Matthew McGillivray (ZAF). Igarashi took control at the start of the heat, leading most of the way until McGillivray charged home with his last wave scoring 6.83 (out of a possible 10) from one massive upwards snap. This performance boosted McGillivray’s ranking from 32 to 25, a much-needed lift ahead of the Mid-season Cut.