MANOKWARI, West Papua, Indonesia (Wednesday, November 29, 2023) – The inaugural Manokwari Pro World Surf League (WSL) Qualifying Series (QS)1000 and Pro Junior event got underway today with the men’s Round of 24 and women’s Round of 12 seeing action in the beautiful blue waters off Amban Beach in two-to-three foot wind-affected waves.

After a morning opening ceremony by the Government of West Papua to welcome the WSL and the competitors and officially open the event, the action got underway.

Putra Hermawan (INA) showed great form with his aerial surfing, which earned him the top heat total of the day, first locking in a 7.33 (out of a possible 10) for a smooth air reverse after setting it up with a couple of snaps, then flying the tail even higher on another aerial for a solid 7.73, ending the heat with a total score of 15.06 (out of a possible 20).

“It was really fun out there, being with Tipi (Jabrik) and the other guys, and the waves lined up great for both turns and airs,” said Hermawan. “After I made that first air-reverse, it gave me the confidence to go bigger on the next one, and so I just went for it. This is a great place. It’s my first time here in Manokwari, and I’m really liking it a lot.”

In the final men’s heat of the round, it was Dhany Widianto (INA) stepping on the gas and then boosting a smooth air reverse to narrowly beat Hermawan’s top score by a few decimal points, getting a 7.83 for the highest single wave score of the day.

Perennial QS warrior Oney Anwar (INA) and up-and-coming junior Westen Hirst (INA) also won their heats to advance into the Round of 16, with local’s Papua Demara (INA) and Ben Maryen (INA), narrowly missing out on advancing, finishing in 3rd place in their heats.

In the Women’s Round of 12, after her first wave of the heat scored a 6.00 to jump into the lead, Dhea Natasya (INA) took off again and went even bigger on her backhand turn to post the round’s highest single-wave score of 6.67, ending the heat with a total heat score of 12.67. Natasya opted to stick to her backhand as she sees that as a strong point of her surfing.

“I think my backhand is better, and with this size of waves and because it’s lined up really well, I knew if I just waited for the good ones, I could get good scores. It was fun out there, a bit windy, but still really good.”

Cinta Hansel (INA), Imari Hearn (GBR), and Kya Heuer (INA) also progressed and will compete again in the Women’s Quarterfinals.

Competition is likely to continue tomorrow, with a call to be made at 9:30 a.m. local time.

The 2023 Manokwari Pro QS 1000 and Pro Junior will run at Amban Beach in West Papua, Indonesia, from November 29 to December 3, 2023. For more information and results, head to www.worldsurfleauge.com or download the free WSL App.

The 2023 Manokwari Pro QS 1000 and Pro Junior is sponsored by the Province of West Papua Tourism Authority.