Champ from Siargao, other Pinoy surfers fall in int’l surfing tilt

Former champion John Mark Tokong of General Luna, Siargao Island fully utilizes his hometown edge against his foreign foes in the 23rd Siargao International Surfing Cup held in Cloud Nine, General Luna, Siargao Island on Sept. 25, 2017. Photo courtesy of Tim Hain of World Surf League.

GENERAL LUNA, Surigao del Norte (MindaNews/25 September) — Dismay greeted local spectators when a strong hometown bet failed to advance against foreign competitors in the 23rd Siargao International Surfing Cup on Monday afternoon.

Philmar Alipayo, 25, who bagged the championship in the 19th Siargao National Surfing Cup last Saturday, bowed to Kiron Jabour of Hawaii and Raoni Montereiro of Brazil.

“I got unlucky this time. The waves were too small during my heat and I had a few mistakes,” Alipayo told MindaNews.

Local spectators were upset over Alipayo’s early exit saying saying they were expecting a lot from him.

“I was quite upset but that’s the sports. There’s time for winning and there’s time for losing. We have to accept it,” said German national Rico Reteinbach who bet on the homegrown talent.

Other Filipino contenders such as Arkipo Figuron, Dionisio Espejon and Carlito Nogalo suffered reversals, too.

They were eliminated in the second day of the event sanctioned by the World Surf League with qualifying series 3,000 points.

But two Filipino competitors who hail from this town won in their respective heats on Monday.

The 2015 champion John Mark Tokong and 2014 champion Edito “Piso” Alcala advanced to the next round of the elimination.

Alcala posted the highest score so far in this event with 18.17 points out of possible 20 points while Tokong garnered the second highest score with 17.83 points.

Alcala will face Indonesian Rio Waida, Costa Rican Tomas King, and Hawaiian Barron Mamiya in the fourth round of the elimination on Tuesday.

Tokong will compete against Nic Von Rupp from Portugal, Gabriel Farias from Brazil and Harley Ross from Australia.

The 2017 Siargao International Surfing Cup has been upgraded to 3,000 points qualifying series from 1,500 points last year.

The move attracted 103 surfers from other countries. (Roel N. Catoto/MindaNews)