Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay 2010: Jordy Smith Wins In South Africa

With his win at the Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay, Jordy Smith steals the ASP World No.1 position from Kelly Slater. The young South African surfer is still getting accustomed to the feeling of victory.

Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay 2010.  Photo: ASP/ScholtzFor the first time ever, Jordy Smith has claimed an ASP elite victory, by besting Adam Melling at the 2010 Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay.

The Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay is the fourth event of the 2010 ASP World Tour and during the Finals between Smith and Melling, the blaring vuvuzelas rang out like battle cries across the beach.

The emotional South African was astounded by his victory and gives credit to his supportive fans.

“This is the best day of my life,” Smith said. “The crowd on the beach has been supporting me the last few days and hearing the cheers and the Vuvuzelas just gets me fired up to perform. It feels like they’re pushing me along. I couldn’t have done it without them.”

Jordy Smith left very little to chance in the Final against Melling, opening with an impressive 8.90 before toppint that with a 9.03. His total score, a 17.93 out of a possible 20, proved insurmountable for Melling.

“I knew the swell was dying and I had to take advantage of every wave that came through,” Smith said. “Adam (Melling) is such a dangerous surfer. He’s been in form all day and I knew that if he got the waves, he would get the scores. I went out there knowing I had to open up strong.”

After taking the ratings’ lead over former nine-time ASP World Champion Kelly Slater yesterday, Smith solidified his position as the ASP World No. 1 with today’s emphatic victory.

“It definitely is a different feeling,” Smith said. “To be chasing the lead and defending the lead are two different things. It’s a long year ahead and you can’t count anyone out until it’s over. I’m going to enjoy this feeling for now.”

Smith almost didn't make it to the Finals, as the big South African was comboed by lethal Australian Bede Durbidge with four minutes remaining in their Semifinal clash.

Catching two waves in under a minute, Smith unloaded a barrage of aerials and forehand blasts to claw his way back into the lead.

“I’m still not too sure what happened – it’s all a blur,” Smith said. “I got that first one where I did the little grab air that I didn’t think was good, but the judges scored the whole wave pretty well. Then I backed it up and put everything I had into it.”

Melling’s climb to the Finals was nothing short of sensational. Rated a lowly 41st on the ASP World Title Race rankings heading into Jeffreys Bay, the 2010 ASP Dream Tour rookie powered his way through five rounds of competition before coming short in the Final.

His Runner-Up finish sees him bumped up to ASP World No. 19, well inside the safety zone for the dreaded mid-year field reduction.

“The ocean didn’t cooperate with me in the Final so that’s a shame but I couldn’t be happier,” Melling said. “We had amazing waves and to get the best result of my career is huge.”

The 2010 ASP World Tour will continue at the Billabong Pro Tahiti from August 23 through September 3, 2010.

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