7 April 2008 Team South Africa continued its reign as the undisputed champions of world masters surfing by trumping the world’s best 35-years-and-older surfers to win the overall team crown at the 2008 ISA World Surfing Championships in perfect point break waves at Punta Rocas in Peru at the weekend. Led by individual gold medalists Heather Clark (Masters Women), Marc Wright (Kahunas) and Chris Knutsen (Grand Kahunas), South Africa blew away the competition to take their second consecutive team world championship. They topped the standings with 10 500 points, 1 100 ahead of Australia in second, with Brazil, on 9 041, finishing in third, and hosts Peru rounding out the top four with 8 766 points. Saturday’s final day of competition offered solid one-to-1.5-metre waves for the “Masters Olympics of Surfing”. Former World Championship Tour surfer Heather Clark got the ball rolling for the South African team by blasting her way to victory over Peru’s Rocio Larranaga, Sandra English of Australia and Brigitte Mayer of Brazil in the final of the Masters Women’s (over-35) division. South Africa’s most decorated female surfer was in a league of her own; netting 15.83 points in the final to end the event with the four highest heat tallies and the five highest single ride scores in the women’s event. “I’m absolutely ecstatic,” Clark said. “In 2003 I was in contention for the title on the World Tour, so it’s always been my dream to win a world title. I’m over the moon.” Chris Knutsen was the next winner for South Africa, mixing his trademark rail carves with a radical forehand approach to defeat Peru’s Paco Del Castillo, Australia’s Frank Hayter and Puerto Rico’s Rene Gonzalez in the Grand Kahunas (over-50) division. Knutsen was crowned Kahunas (over-45) world champion in Puerto Rico last year and followed that up with the gold medal in the Grand Kahunas this year. Durban’s Marc Wright completed the South Africa trifecta by snatching a last minute victory over fellow countrymen Nick Pike to nab gold in the Kahunas (over-45) division. Sitting in second place with a minute remaining in the 30-minute final, Wright snared a wave set and produced a series of classy frontside manoeuvres to post a heat-winning 8.33. Pike took the silver with Punta Rocas’ local Jorge Posso getting bronze and Australia’s Rod Baldwin the copper. 1988 Pipeline Masters champion Rob Page of Australia rekindled his competitive surfing career by reaching the finals of both the Grand Masters and Masters divisions. In the Grand Masters, the Wollongong charger out-pointed Peru’s Magoo De La Rosa, Brazil’s Jo Jo Olivenca and South Africa’s Andre Malherbe to capture gold. Puerto Rico’s Juan Ashton was the only Latin America title winner, netting his second successive Masters’ title. He scored a sensational 17.50 out of 20 – the highest score of the day – to defeat Ricardo Toledo of and the Australian pair of Rob Page and Jay Sharpe in the only final that did not feature a South African competitor. ISA President Fernando Aguerre awarded the surfers their medals in the event’s closing ceremony. He was ecstatic about the success of this international event stating. “I would like to thank the Peruvian people and the Peruvian Surfing Federation for welcoming us with open arms,” he said. “The 160 visitors will be leaving the country with a Peruvian warmth tattooed in our hearts; we are new ambassadors for Peru. The proverbial fountain of youth is closer than we might think: It’s the waves of the world…We don’t stop surfing because we get old, we get old because we stop surfing…So don’t stop!” The location of the 2009 ISA World Masters Surfing Championships has not yet been chosen but locations in South Africa and Brazil are in the running. Source: Surfing South Africa Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
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File photo of fomer Indian captain Sourav Ganguly.This year’s auction saw money splurging on players for record deals but there were some big names who, surprisingly, found no takers from among the 10 franchisees.Having doubled his base price to $4,00,000 (Rs 1.84 cr), former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly was in for a rude shock when he failed to find any bidders at the auction from amongst the 10 IPL teams.Ganguly wasn’t the only big name who was given a cold shoulder by the franchises as even former West Indies skippers Chris Gayle and Brian Lara were snubbed.While Lara hasn’t played much of cricket in the last four years and does not have much experience in the shortest format of the game, Gayle’s fate was unexpected.The big Jamaican is a proven T20 cricketer with his attacking strokeplay and useful off-spinners and was one of the most talked about signing in the first IPL auction where Kolkata Knight Riders inked a deal with him. Besides, there are other names like England’s Graeme Swann and South African Herschelle Gibbs who weren’t picked.While Ganguly and Lara failed to prove their prowess for the highly demanding IPL seasons, doubts over the availability of Gayle and Swann, arguably the best off-spinner in the world at the moment, for the event could have cost them a place in the Twenty20 extravaganza.But with no takers on Day One of the auction, it is still not the end of the road for the unsold players as they will be up for sale on Sunday after the first round of auction. But it is highly unlikely that any of these names will fetch anything more than their base price. It was surprising that Ganguly decided to double his base price from $2,00,000 even though it was clear that he was not likely to get too many bidders.advertisementBut there could be some thought in that move. At Rs 1.84 crore, franchisees may have found Ganguly an expensive signing and preferred to put in their money on younger players.But on Sunday, Ganguly could well be seen in the camp of Pune Warriors for the base price.Those who remain unsold: Tamim Iqbal, Chamara Kapugedera, Murali Kartik, Ajantha Mendis, Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Dilhara Fernando, Luke Wright, Matt Prior, Mark Boucher, Graeme Manou, Brian Lara, Herschelle Gibbs, Jesse Ryder, Sourav Ganguly and Chris Gayle.FAQ’sWhat are marquee players? Those players, who went under the hammer first and are picked according to a combination of their valuation and star power. These players will be retained by their franchisees for 3 editions. For this year’s auction, there are 27 marquee players.How many teams will be participating in IPL-4? Ten. This includes the eight existing teams and two news teams – Team Kochi and Pune Warriors.What is the total purse for each franchisee? $ 9 million. But the teams that have retained some players will have their budgets reduced as the price of such players.What is player retention? Each of the eight franchisees, who were part of the last three editions, were allowed to retain four players.What’s the condition regarding overseas players? A team is allowed to play only four overseas players in a match. Besides, four players must belong to the catchment area where the team is located.What is the maximum pool of players a franchise can have? Each franchise can have a maximum squad of 30 players. They must have 4 under-21 players in the pool.Who is the master auctioneer? Richard Madley, a professional auctioneer from England, is accepting the bids from all the franchisees as he did for the last 3 editions.