GENERAL LUNA, Siargao Island (MindaNews/28 September)– An Indonesian surfer won over a homegrown heavy favorite in the men’s open division of the Asian Surfing Championships (ASC) during the 19th Siargao International Surfing Cup here on Friday.
Komang Putra Hermawan, a 20-year old surfer from Lembongan Island in Bali, bagged US$5,000 after he successfully conquered the waves of Cloud 9 against Rodolfo “Osot” Alcala, a native of General Luna.
“I never expected that I would win. I came here just to play and experience surfing at Cloud 9. Competing here is a different experience, the wave is good but a bit harder compared to other spots that I’ve been to,” said Hermawan, currently ranked fourth in the ASC.
“[The wave] is fast, so I had to give extra effort to just to catch the wave. This means you have to paddle faster. In general, the place is very amazing and I would really love to come back and surf here again,” he added.
Alcala, who is popular in Siargao, said he was glad to make it to the finals. He went home with US$2,500 for placing second.
“I was not fortunate this time around, my wave selection was way off and I just wasn’t able to push it through unlike during the quarter finals wherein I got perfect scores from the judges,” Alcala said.
Alcala, twice winner of the Siargao International Surfing Cup in 1999 and 2010, expressed hopes he could get a sponsor to join the Asian tour and represent the country.
Zeny Pullugna, Philippine Surfing Federation secretary general, said this year’s Siargao International Surfing Cup is bigger than last year, with the event sanction by the ASC.
“This means that this event is part of the Asian surfing tour. Some of the surfers here will also be competing in ASC sanctioned competition in other parts of Asia,” Pullugna said.
Aside from the Philippines, the ASC circuit includes Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Taiwan.
For four days, 48 men from 11 countries namely the Philippines, Indonesia, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Israel, Russia, France, Holland and Hawaii surfed it out in the ASC 6 star rated circuit competition with a total price purse of US$10,000. (Erwin Mascarinas/MindaNews)