International Beach Tennis For St Francis

Tennis South Africa and KIA Motors South Africa partner to grow beach tennis

The sport of beach tennis is set to flourish with the news that Tennis South Africa (TSA) and KIA Motors have partnered to launch a high-profile International Tennis Federation (ITF) event circuit in December 2018.

Hosted at George Lea Park, Sandton, today’s partnership announcement and press launch of the KIA Summer Slam beach tennis tour was supported by plenty of athletes from other sporting codes, including Erin Burger and Lenize Potgieter from SA Netball; Wihan Lubbe and Aaron Phangiso from bizhub Highveld Lions as well as Grant Thomson and Wandile Makwetu from Multiply Titans.

Spanning two weeks, the four events that make up the KIA Summer Slam beach tennis tour will all be ITF ranking tournaments and, coupled with a total prize money pot in excess of $35 000, the crowds will witness some of the world’s best beach tennis players on the South African shores. The final event, in Plettenberg Bay, will be one of the five richest beach tennis events in the world in terms of prize money.

“We are delighted to see KIA Motors extend their support of local tennis with this exciting new three-year partnership. We have built up a great working relationship around their Davis Cup team sponsorship and their involvement in beach tennis promises to be even more exciting,” says TSA CEO, Richard Glover. “Beach tennis is a fun and simplified version of tennis and offers a great entry point into our sport for first time players. Indeed, we see the format as being a powerful tool for tennis development.”

Over and above the high-profile December events, the new partnership will also see beach tennis courts being built at existing TSA Growthpoint development centres – in Soweto, Atteridgeville, eThekwini and Cape Town, respectively.

David Sieff, Marketing Director, KIA Motors South Africa is excited to extend the involvement of KIA Motors in tennis. “KIA Motors has a longstanding association with tennis globally through the Australian Open, but also locally through our association with Team South Africa and Davis Cup,” he says. “We are very excited to now extend our partnership to beach tennis. It’s a fun and fresh format that is open to everyone, regardless of experience or skills. More than that, it is absolutely action packed! We look forward to seeing South African holidaymakers putting their skills to test against some of the best in the world.”

The KIA Summer Slam beach tennis tour will take place as follows:

  • 8-10 December 2018:      St Francis & Cape St Francis             Prize money: $2500.
  • 12-14 December 2018:     Knysna                                                Prize money: $2500.
  • 15-18 December 2018:     Plettenberg Bay                                  Prize money: $6500.
  • 18-21 December 2018:     Plettenberg Bay                                  Prize money: $25000.

The entry form is available online via:

David Sieff, KIA Motors South Africa Marketing Director (back far left) and Richard Glover, Tennis South Africa CEO (back far right) with South African wheelchair tennis players and celebs at the launch of the Beach Tennis sponsorship partnership between tennis South Africa and KIA Motors South Africa held at George Lea Park, Sandton, Johannesburg on Wednesday 24 October 2018.
Picture credit : The PR Machine

Luke Slijpen Clinches Bronze Medal

South Africa Eighth Overall at  VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship

Luke Slijpen (Hout Bay) earned the Bronze medal for third place in the U18 boys division at the VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championships at Huntington Beach on Sunday Photo: ISA / Reed

Luke Slijpen (Hout Bay) clinched the Bronze medal in the U18 boys division and the South African team finished eighth overall out of the 44 nations and 361 athletes who participated in the 2018 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship which ended at Huntington Beach in California on Sunday.

Slijpen was one of only two surfers in the U18 boys division who successfully finished either first or second in the all six Main Event stream heats, and he won the Round 6 heat to qualifying directly for the Grand Final in the division along with heat runner-up and eventual silver medalist Joh Azuchi (Japan).

The 25 minute final saw subsequent gold medalist Keanu Kamiyama (Japan) get off to great start with a score of 7.33 (out of 10) and he secured the coveted crown with a 6.33 later in the heat. Try as did, Slijpen could not find the waves that saw him post a heat total of 15.37 (out of 20) to win his Round 6 encounter earlier in the day and the Capetonian was eventually overtaken by Azuchi and had to settle for third spot ahead of Cole Houshmand (USA).

Slijpen’s haul of 730 points towards the team total saw South Africa finish the annual event  ranked No 8 among the record setting 44 nations that attended, an improvement of three places over their result in the corresponding event in Japan in 2017. That result see the country qualify for a place in the SA Aloha Cup event at next year’s ISA World Junior Champs as the unique form of team relay surfing is contested by the top eight nations from the previous event.

Japan completed an historic double when their team won the team gold medal at the ISA World Junior Champs for the first time, adding the achievement to their victory at the ISA World Surfing Games in their home surf in September.

The hosts USA took the team silver medal with Australia earning bronze and Hawaii the copper medal for fourth place overall.

Japan’s rapid rise in surfing’s hierarchy ahead of the sport’s debut appearance in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics has been significantly assisted by Durbanite Wade Sharp who took over as the coach for the country’s surf teams after leading Costa Rica to the team gold medal at the ISA World Surfing Games in Nicaragua in 2015.

Germany won its first ISA medal across any division when Rachel Presti took gold in the U18 girls division. The U16 boys gold went to Grayson Hinrichs of Australia and 13-year-old American prodigy Caitlin Simmers announced her presence on the world stage by posting the highest single ride score of the final day – 9.17 – and earned gold in the U16 girls.

“The words that I have right now are thank you,” said ISA President Fernando Aguerre in his closing address at the awards ceremony. “Thank you to our Title Sponsor VISSALA for believing in the power of Junior Surfing and thank you to Visit Huntington Beach for opening their arms for these over 1,000 visitors from around the world.

“We had an amazing nine days of sun, no wind, and great waves. It was incredible. We have 44 countries represented, almost a quarter of the world, and we had the first edition to feature a gender equality format for boys and girls.”

Full results, news reports and downloadable video clips and high resolution images from the VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship can be found at www.

VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship

Team Ranking
Gold – Japan
Silver – USA
Bronze – Australia
Copper – Hawaii
5 – France
6 – Spain
7 – Brazil
8 – South Africa
9 – Germany
10 – Portugal

 Boys U-18
Gold – Keanu Kamiyama (JPN)
Silver – Joh Azuchi (JPN)
Bronze – Luke John Slijpen (RSA, Hout Bay)
Copper – Cole Houshmand (USA)

South African Results:
Bryce du Preez (East London)
Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay)

Girls U-18
Gold – Rachel Presti (GER)
Silver – Keala Tomoda Bannert (HAW)
Bronze – Minami Nonaka (JPN)
Copper – Summer Macedo (HAW)

South African Results:
Zoe Steyn (East London)
Gabi Lailvaux (Westbrook)
Tayla de Coning (East London)

Boys U-16
Gold – Grayson Hinrichs (AUS)
Silver – Kade Matson (USA)
Bronze – Levi Slawson (USA)
Copper – Riaru Ito (JPN)

South African Results:
Luke Thompson (Durban)
Mitch du Preez (East London)
Tide-Lee Ireland (Durban)

Girls U-16
Gold – Caitlin Simmers (USA)
Silver – Shino Matsuda (JPN)
Bronze – Sara Wakita (JPN)
Copper – Lucía Machado (ESP)

South African Results:
Kayla Nogueira (uMhlanga)
Zoe Steyn (East London)
Ceara Knight (Scarborough)

Surfing South Africa is the National Governing body for the sport in South Africa. SSA is a member of the South African Sports Commission and Olympic Committee (SASCOC), the African Surfing Confederation (ASC) and the International Surfing Association (ISA). 

Press Release



Luke Thompson Stars for South Africa

Luke Thompson Stars for South Africa on Day 4 of VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship

Luke Thompson (Durban) posted the second highest heat total of Day 4, 15.28 out of 20, in winning his U16 boys Repecharge Round 2 heat at the VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championships at Huntington Beach in California – Photo: ISA / Reed

Luke Thomson (Durban) produced the standout performance for South Africa in solid overhead waves on Day 4 of the VISSLA ISA World

Junior Surfing Championship at Huntington Beach in California on Tuesday.

Competing in the U16 boys Repecharge Round 2, the 14-year-old from the Durban beachfront found the best waves in his heat and rode them with power, speed and flow to earn scores of 7.33 and 7.93 (each out of 10) on his two counting rides. His heat total of 15.26 was the second highest of the day.

Not far behind Thompson was fellow Durbanite Tide-Lee Ireland who also reveled in the conditions and recorded a heat winning tally of 14.17 in his U16 boys Repecharge match-up. Both South Africans advanced to the next round in the world’s biggest junior surfing event.

Kayla Nogueira (uMhlanga) kept her status in the U16 girls Main Event stream on track with a gutsy runner-up placing behind heat winner Shino Matsuda (Japan). Nogueira’s scores of 6.0 and 4.73 left her less than half-a-point behind the Matsuda as the pair advanced to Round 3.

Earlier Ceara Knight (Scarborough) fell just short of second place in her U16 girls’ heat, finishing a miniscule 0.17 of a point behind Brie Bennett (New Zealand) in third place, which dropped the Capetonian into the Repecharge rounds.

Tayla de Coning (East London) had no problem in winning her first Repecharge round heat in the U18 girls division and will be up against opponents from Brazil, England and Germany in Round 2.

Bryce du Preez (East London) posted comfortable victories in both his U18 Boys Repercharge Round 1 and Round 2 heats, racking up heat totals of 9.67 and 12.54 which left his nearest rivals needing to record the highest single ride score in each heat to overtake him.

The team’s only setback came in the last heat to run in the U18 boys repecharge Round 2 where Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay) accumulated scores of 5.53 and 3.60 but was left needing a 4.92 to climb into second place when the siren sounded to end the frenzied 15 minute encounter. Faulkner is the South African first team member to be eliminated from the event, placing 65th overall in the U18 boys division and contributing 160 points to the team’s points tally.

That result sees South Africa occupy 11th place out of the 44 nations in the provisional rankings, with the top 10 teams still having all 12 of their team members in contention.

Wednesday’s schedule includes Main Event Round 3 for all four divisions on the main podium, where the action is webcast live, and will feature South Africans Luke Slijpen (U18 boys), Zoe Steyn (U18 girls), Mitch du Preez (U16 boys) and Kayla Nogueira (U16 girls).

The second podium will run Repecharge stream heats including the balance of the U18 boys Round 2, followed by U18 and U16 girls Round 2 and will finish the day with the U18 boys Round 3.

The waves are forecast to decrease in size during the day, but remain in the head-high range, with light offshore winds in the morning, trending onshore during the afternoon.

Action on Podium 1 at the VISSLA ISA World Junior Championship can be followed live on starting at approximately 4.30 pm South African time daily. The website also provides full results, news and downloadable video clips and high resolution images

Surfing South Africa is the National Governing body for the sport in South Africa. SSA is a member of the South African Sports Commission and Olympic Committee (SASCOC), the African Surfing Confederation (ASC) and the International Surfing Association (ISA).

Compiled & Distributed by: Life’s a Beach Communications

South Africa Joins Record Breaking 44 Nations

South Africa Joins Record Breaking 44 Nations in VISSLA ISA World Junior Championships in California

2018 South African Junior Surfing team with ISA President, Fernando Aguerre (in white suit) before the Parade of Nations at the VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championships in California – Photo: ISA / Evans

The 2018 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship was officially declared open at Huntington Beach in California on Saturday with the South African team joining a record breaking 361 athletes from 44 nations in the opening ceremonies before the first heats of the event took to the waves.

The athletes, and the 136 team officials accompanying them in the stirring Parade of Nations, were cheered by thousands of spectators lining the streets of Surf City USA as they marched in full team regalia to the beach on the South Side of the iconic Huntington Pier.

There they were greeted by dignitaries and celebrated the signature Sands of the World Ceremony in which two members from each team took to the stage and poured sand from their local beach into a glass container while waving their national flag, symbolizing the peaceful gathering of nations of the world through surfing.

“Welcome to the largest VISSLA ISA Juniors in history,” said ISA President Fernando Aguerre in his opening address. “I would like to give a big thank you to VISSLA for believing in the power of Junior Surfing, and as well to the City of Huntington Beach for opening your arms, waves and beach to all of us.

After a display of local song and dance by the Surf City Singers from Huntington Beach High school, competition kicked off with the first 10 heats for U-18 Boys and first 11 heats for U-16 Boys completed in the punchy head-high waves on offer in front of the two judging towers.

The first South African boys in each division are only scheduled to start their campaigns for individual and team glory in Heat No. 15, and they will be in action on Sunday, along with the U18 and U16 girls where the first South Africans will be coming up in Heat No. 2.

The huge number of competitors – there are 32 heats of four surfers for Round 1 of the boys’ divisions and 24 heats for each girls division – has resulted in the duration of the heats being reduced from the customary 20 minutes to a cutthroat 15 minutes. This increases the contribution that luck plays in the surfers finding and riding two good counting waves during their heat.

In strange twist of the seeding system for the boys’ divisions, two South Africans will be competing against each other in Heat 19 of Round 1, which is highly unusual particularly as there are 32 heats in the round so they could easily have been more spread out.

The double-elimination format used in ISA events sees surfers advance to the next round in the Main Event stream as long as they finish first or second in their heats. The top two surfers in Round 6 of the Main Event progress directly to the Grand Final in their division

Competitors who finish third or fourth in Main Event heats drop into the gruelling Repecharge stream. There any result other a top two finish sees them eliminated from the event. The top two in Round 10 of the Repecharge stream also progress to the Grand Final.

The South African team’s first objective in California will be to improve on their 11th place result in the corresponding event in Japan last year. The top seven teams from the previous year, plus the hosting nation, automatically qualify for the ISA Aloha Cup, a form of really surfing. The four teams accumulating the highest points totals from all four divisions are awarded gold, silver, bronze and copper medals respectively

All the action from VISSLA ISA World Junior Championship will be streamed live on which also provides full results, news and downloadable video clips and high resolution images

2018 South African Junior Surfing Team:

U18 Boys
Bryce du Preez (East London)
Luke Slijpen (Hout Bay)
Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay)

U18 Girls
Zoe Steyn (East London)
Tayla de Coning (East London)
Gabi Lailvaux (Westbrook)

U16 Boys
Luke Thompson (Durban)
Tide-Lee Ireland Durban)
Mitch du Preez (East London)

U16 Girls
Zoe Steyn (East London)
Kayla Nogueira (Umhlanga)
Ceara Knight (Scarborough)

Etienne Venter (Jeffreys Bay)
Chris Bond (Cape Town)

Note that rising star Zoe Steyn is the top seed South African seed in both the U16 and U18 girls events.

Surfing South Africa is the National Governing body for the sport in South Africa. SSA is a member of the South African Sports Commission and Olympic Committee (SASCOC), the African Surfing Confederation (ASC) and the International Surfing Association (ISA).

Elkington & Steyn Clinch Pro Junior Titles

Final Day Of The Billabong Junior Series

Max Elkington and Zoe Steyn © Ian Thurtell

Breezy onshore conditions and a slight surge in swell greeted competitors on the final day of competition at the Billabong Junior Series Finale, and the first heat of the day – the U12 Girls Final  – was sent straight out into the Seal Point lineup..Gabi Herbst was the surfer of the morning with a few incredible rides in the mixed up conditions, including an excellent 8.0 out of 10 for one ride which secured the title. Sarah Scott was the runner up.

Kai Hall was the champion in the U12 Boys final, banking one huge score for two critical turns on a big set wave for a near-perfect score of 9.33 and an unassailable lead. Hall was closely followed by Joel Fowles who surfed impressively on his backhand.

The U14 Girls division was a slow heat, with low scores and at the end of the heat it was Aimee Du Preez who emerged as the winner, with Olivia Winter in second place.

Luke Thompson caught 11 waves in his Final heat to defeat James Ribbink in what was an exciting U14 Boys heat. Thompson’s strategy of hard and fast surfing, catch anything that moved, proved to be the winning formula, with Ribbink, Daniel Emslie and Brad Scott filling up the minor slots.

As the tide dropped out and the onshore waves continued to pour through relentlessly, the U16 Girls headed out for their final, and it was an action-packed exchange with three of the girls on their backhand and one on her forehand. Zoe Steyn emerged victorious with a convincing win against her counterparts Kayla Nogueira, Ceara Knight and Caroline Brown who placed second, third and fourth respectively.

The U16 Boys was another final dogged by few waves and low scores. Tide-Lee Ireland snagged the win from York Van Jaarsveldt with a combined score of less than 9 points. Mitch Du Preez and Reilly Mare’ finished off the results with third and fourth spots.

Zoe Steyn © Kody McGregor

The World Surf League (WSL) Junior Women’s final a nail-biting affair as Zoe Steyn and Kai Woolf took centre stage. Both surfers had been surfing phenomenally all event and it was going to be about the surfer who caught the best waves. That was Steyn, and she won the final by a close margin from Woolf.

Then Max Elkington and Luke Slijpen took to the water to battle it out for event honours in the WSL Junior Men’s event. It was all about Elkington who took the win and broke his year-long victory drought with his first place.

Max Elkington © Kody McGregor

“I haven’t had a win this year, and for a bit of last year, so I am really happy with the win today,” said a stoked Elkington. “I also won it last here two years ago, so just very happy with the win.”

Billabong Junior Series Seal Point pres by BOS

Final Results:

U12 Girls

  1. Gabi Herbst
  2. Sarah Scott
  3. Anastasia Venter
  4. Meka Loots

U12 Boys

  1. Kai Hall
  2. Joel Fowles
  3. Ntokozo ‘Surprise’ Maphumalo
  4. Asha Steytler

U14 Girls

  1. Aimee Du Preez
  2. Olivia Winter
  3. Adrian Wolmarans
  4. Kaylee Shaw Nell

U14 Boys

  1. Luke Thompson
  2. James Ribbink
  3. Daniel Emslie
  4. Brad Scott

U16 Girls

  1. Zoe Steyn
  2. Kayla Nogueira
  3. Ceara Knight
  4. Caroline Brown

U16 Boys

  1. Tide Lee Ireland
  2. York Van Jaarsveldt
  3. Mitch Du Preez
  4. Reilly Mare

WSL Junior Men

  1. Max Elkington
  2. Luke Slijpen

WSL Junior Women

  1. Zoe Steyn
  2. Kai Woolf

VonZipper Expression Session

Luke Slijpen

BOS Highest Heat Score Award

Zoe Steyn

2018 Billabong Junior Series Results (Including Ballito & Seal Point)

U12 Girls

  1. Gabi Herbst
  2. Anastasia venter

U12 Boys

  1. Ntokozo Maphumalo
  2. Joel Fowles

U14 Girls

  1. Aimee Du Prees
  2. Olivia Winter

U14 Boys

  1. Luke Thompson
  2. Dan Emslie

U16 Boys

  1. Mitch Du Preez
  2. York Van Jaarsveldt

WSL Junior Women

  1. Zoe Steyn
  2. Kirsty McGillivray

WSL Junior Men

  1. Luke Slijpen
  2. Max Elkington

2018 WSL Africa Junior Men’s Rankings (After Billabong Junior Series Seal Point –event 8 of 8)

1 Luke Slijpen 4060 points    2018 Champion
2 Max Elkington 3090
3 Eli Beukes 2634
4 Luke Thompson 2440
5 Bryce Du Preez 2435

2018 WSL Africa Junior Women’s Rankings (After Billabong Junior Series Seal Point –event 7 of 7)

1 Kai Woolf 4750 points    2018 Champion
2 Zoe Steyn 3870
3 Sophie Bell 2815
4 Kirsty McGillivray 2685
5 Kayla Nogueira 2380

2018 WSL Africa Junior squad to attend the WSL World Junior Championships (Taiwan in December)
Men – Luke Slijpen, Max Elkington, Eli Beukes, Luke Thompson.
Women – Kai Woolf, Zoe Steyn.

Full results, images and news for the WSL JQS events can be found at
Results and more for the other divisions are available at www.surfingsouthafrica,

Press Release – Craig Jarvis –

Billabong Junior Series at Cape St Francis this Weekend

Champions Decided at Billabong Junior Series in Cape St Francis this Weekend

Status: WSL JQS 1,000 rated events for U18 Boys & Girls, SAST events for U16 & U14 Boys & Girls, and U12 Boys & Girls.
Venue: Seal Point, Cape St Francis, Eastern Cape
Dates: September 28 – 30.

The best junior surfers in the country are arriving in Seal Point for the final event in the 2018 Billabong Junior Series. The surf forecast for the contest has signs that it might be an epic weekend of surfing at the ever-consistent Seal Point, with plenty of swell around for the competitors to display their top surfing skills to the judges.

This event is possibly one of the most crucial junior surfing tournaments of the year, with much at stake for the competitors. Firstly there are the stand-alone event results, with surfers wanting to win this contest for points and prize money. Leading on from this, there are the Billabong Junior Series winners. Two event results count for these winners – from both the Billabong Junior Series Ballito and Seal Point events. This event will also crown the World Surf League (WSL) Africa Junior champions, which will also lead on to the qualification for the WSL World Junior Championships, including the top four men and top two women surfers who will compete in the World Junior Championships in Taiwan in December 2018. It promises to be an action-packed and dramatic weekend of surfing.

The contest venue, Seal Point, Cape St Francis © Ian Thurtell

The WSL Africa Men’s Junior Tour is currently being led by Luke Slijpen, with Eli Beukes and Max Elkington hot on his heels, and Dillon Hendricks and Bryce Du Preez not far behind. Slijpen has had an excellent competitive year and has a healthy lead in this division, with Beukes more than one thousand points behind him.

In the WSL Africa Women’s Junior Tour rankings, Kai Woolf is out in front with a comfortable lead over second ranked Zoe Steyn, with Sophie Bell in third place going in to this event. Kirsty McGillivray and Kayla Nogueira make up the remainder of the top five positions.

Both divisions contain a number of surfers who have improved dramatically over the last year, and there is every possibility of an upset in either division from the likes of Karl Steen and Daniel Emslie in the men’s, and Ceara Knight and Sne Makhubu in the women’s divisions respectively, to name a few.

In the U16 Boys division, all eyes will be on Tide Lee Ireland, York Van Jaarsveldt and Mitch du Preez, while in the U16 Girls division Zoe Steyn, Kayla Nogueira and Gabi Lailvaux are just three surfers who look set to dominate.

“It has been a good year for Junior Surfing in the country, and the Billabong Junior Series has been a great success,” said Billabong South Africa Marketing Manager Chad D’Arcy. “We’re immensely proud of this series as it finishes its 21st year in the country, and we are looking forward to another positive year next year for both Junior Surfing as well as the Billabong Junior Series.”

The Billabong Junior Series runs from Friday to Sunday when all the event and series champions will crowned at the awards ceremony on the beach.

Billabong South Africa:
Billabong Women’s South Africa:
Hashtag: #BillabongJNR

The Billabong Junior Series is supported by BOS, VonZipper, Surfing South Africa and the World Surf League.

Press Release – Craig Jarvis – – 082 376 4443