Effectively, we gained’t have to attend till December to observe dwell aggressive browsing once more. The WSL just announced they’ll be working “The Australian Grand Slam of Browsing,” a two-event strike collection at South Stradroke Island and Margaret River, with a ready interval between Sept. 1 and Oct. 31. Whereas the occasions could have no bearing on factors or scores, they are going to be broadcast dwell, and have 24 Australian surfers (12 males and 12 girls), the vast majority of them on the Championship Tour.
In response to the presser, every occasion will run in two days of competitors inside a two-month ready interval, in an try to attain the perfect waves potential, and the prize cash ($20,000 AUD every) will go to the boys’s and girls’s winners’ charities of selection. It goes on to say that comparable regional occasions are deliberate for America (seemingly at Lemoore), in addition to in France and Portugal, previous to the 2021 season openers at Honolua Bay and Pipeline (scheduled this November/December). If the WSL can pull all of them off, we may see 5 dwell exhibition occasions within the subsequent 4 months. A welcome slate of leisure after eight months of nothing.
Whereas the WSL is selling these strikes as a “WSL Countdown” collection, it appears potential they’re additionally getting used as an experiment for the long run. Keep in mind, the placement for the “WSL Finals” world title decider remains to be up within the air. Final week we posited that the WSL should consider running the title decider over a two-month window, with a shortlist of the world’s finest waves as choices, to ensure pumping surf. Curiously, that’s precisely what the WSL is doing with this Grand Slam of Browsing, besides they’ve already narrowed the areas right down to South Straddie and Margaret River. And naturally, with COVID restrictions nonetheless in place, each occasions shall be non-spectator, and broadcast solely.
“Good luck discovering a surfer that doesn’t daydream about scoring a type of good South Straddie days,” Julian Wilson advised the WSL. “Having a window to choose a two-day occasion window is right, that is going to be enjoyable. Anytime we get to have a WSL occasion at a location the place all of us wish to go for a browsing journey anyway, is one thing to stay up for! West Aus has a lot to supply by way of wave varieties and whether or not it’s huge or small it all the time packs a punch and affords a possibility for us to carry out.”
It’s unclear from the presser if the Margaret River Professional shall be held strictly at Predominant Break, or if surrounding waves like The Field and North Level are additionally choices. Wilson’s quote leads us to imagine the WSL will attempt to run the occasion in pumping tubes, fairly than mushy partitions, which might be epic for these itching to observe some motion. West OZ has a minimum of a half dozen world-class slabs and South Straddie, on the Gold Coast, is likely one of the finest beachbreaks on this planet—when it’s on, that’s. Whether or not or not that point of the 12 months (the opening months of Spring) will truly produce the kind of waves followers are hoping for stays to be seen.
Whatever the location in West Ouncesor the swell they rating at Straddie, it seems just like the WSL is following within the footsteps of the NBA, MLB, and so forth and on the lookout for artistic methods to return again on-line in 2020.
This text initially appeared on Surfer.com and was republished with permission.
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