After only one layday the J-Bay Open was called back on this morning at inconsistent Supertubes. During a slow start that saw current world number one Matt Wilkinson lose to Alejo Muniz, a few of the surfers — Joel Parkinson included — questioned commissioner Kieren Perrow’s decision to run. “When it’s an easy call KP is always down here hanging with the boys,” Joel quipped, “but when it’s questionable like this he always hides out somewhere.”
Joel never found KP and it was obvious he was less-than-thrilled to head out for his heat. He’d end up losing to Julian Wilson, who headbutted an exposed chunk of reef halfway through their Round 3 match. “I was just kicking out on the inside and I bashed that thing,” he said. “I never even saw it. Luckily it was covered in mussels and they kind of give, otherwise I would have knocked myself out for sure.”
Julian spent 10 minutes sitting outside afterwards, bleeding from his face. Not an ideal situation, especially considering the amount of marine activity around here, and the fact he was sitting in nearly the exact same spot where Mick had his “encounter” last year, which Julian witnessed firsthand in the final.
Parko hung around to support Mick, and after Mick convincingly won his Round 4 heat with 18 points in conditions much improved from the morning, Kieren emerged from the tower. “There he is!” Joel joked. “I figured I’d find you now that’s it’s turned on.”
Kieren smiled, nervously. Days like today it’s not easy being the commissioner, but with an iffy forecast for the remainder of the waiting period, it would appear KP made the right call.
Check the gallery above for highlights.
And the (very exciting!) upcoming Quarterfinal matchups:
John John Florence vs Jordy Smith
Kelly Slater vs Josh Kerr
Julian Wilson vs Gabriel Medina
Mick Fanning vs Filipe Toledo