The strength of women’s surfing in South Africa was evident at the ISA World Surfing Games in California yesterday when Rosanne Hodge (East London) and Tammy-Lee Smith (Salt Rock, KZN) both progressed through two rounds of competition, to reach the last 16 in the qualifying stream of the biennial event.
Hodge dominated both her heats in the women’s division. The current #8 on the WQS rankings left her opponents needing a combination of rides in the opening heat, and then clinched a valiant victory over three vastly more experienced girls next up.
Hodge advances to the last 16 along with second-placed Julia Christian (USA), having relegated Caroline Sarran (FRA) and Patricia Lopes (POR) to the repecharge rounds.
Smith joined her team-mate in the third round of the qualifying stream via a pair of comfortable runner-up finishes in her heats.
The two SA girls have arguably the easier task of qualifying for the last eight from quarter-finals one and four, with heats two and three featuring one representative each from Australia, USA and Brazil, and only the top two in each heat avoiding the cutthroat repecharge rounds.
Meanwhile SA’s position at the head-table of ISA decision-making was secured when long serving administrator, Robin de Kock, GM of Surfing South Africa, was elected to the position of Senior Vice-President for a period four years at the Biennial General Meeting of the organisation.