- Karnataka’s Ramesh Budhial also emerged winner in the ‘Expressions Race’
- Tamil Nadu wins six medals followed by Karnataka at 5, while Goa wins 2
Mangalore, 29th May 2022: In a truly nail-biting finish Karnataka’s Ramesh Budhial snatched away victory from the laps of Tamil Nadu’s Ajeesh Ali to be crowned as the new national champion in the Men’s Open Surf Category on the final day of the third edition of the Indian Open of Surfing. Sugar Banarse & Sofiya Sharma were crowned the national champions in the women’s open & Groms Girls 16 & Under categories respectively, while Tamil Nadu’s Kishore Kumar became the national champion in the groms boys 16 & Under category. The three-day premiere surfing competition under the aegis of the Surfing Federation of India was being hosted by the Mantra Surf Club at the tranquil Panambur Beach in Mangalore, Karnataka. The event has Karnataka Tourism as the title partner while Chennai-based TT Group was the associate partner. Global action camera brand GoPro was the action partner.
Speaking after the tournament, Mr. Arun Vasu, President, of the Surfing Federation of India, said, “ I am very impressed with the quality of surfers that whom we are watching compete here at Mangalore. With the LA Olympics insight we are working hard to identify young and upcoming surfers and the quality and skill at display today only gives me the confidence to keep believing in our objectives. I would like to thank all the surfers who participated in this tournament and congratulate the winners for showcasing some great surfing. I would also like to thank Karnataka Tourism for their constant support without which this competition wouldn’t have been possible to be done on such a grand scale. I would also like to thank our partners TT Group and Go Pro for their constant support, helping us grow the sport of surfing and enabling us to unearth and train new talent.”
The day began with the semifinals of the men’s open surf category which saw Karnataka surfer Ramesh Budhial along with Tamil Nādu’s Ajeesh Ali, Sathish Sarvanan & Ruban V advance into the finals. The finals of the men’s open surf category were a treat to watch with a picture-perfect end when in the final moments of the competition Ramesh Budhial caught a wave to display some breathtaking maneuvers impressing the judges and the fans, helping him clinch the victory and crown of the national champion. Ramesh finished with a total score of 16.33, while runner-up Ajeesh Ali finished with 15.67 points. Sathish Sarvanan finished third with 13 points.
Post a spirited celebration by his friends after his win Ramesh Budhial said, “I am so happy. It is a great feeling to be the national champion. The field was tough, and Ajeesh was spectacular, but I was here today to put in my best effort and I am glad I could do that.”
The women’s open surf competition saw 16-year-old Goa’s Sugar Banarse walk away with the national championship crown from Tamil Nadu surfer and defending champion Srishti Selvam. Sugar who had initially registered for the Groms Girls 16 & Under category was brave enough to take the chance of competing in the Women’s open category and impressed everyone with her skills and surfing from the start. Sugar scored a total of 14.50 points while runner-up Srishti Selvam earned 13.40 points. Karnataka’s Sinchana Gowda finished third with 10.20 points.
Speaking post her win, Sugar said, “I am very happy and grateful to the Surfing Federation of India and the judges to allow me to participate in the women’s open surf category. The waves were tough today and the competition tougher, but I am happy that I could convert my training into actions and become the national champion.”
In the Groms Boys (U16) surf category with 14.84 points, Chennai’s Kishore Kumar was crowned the national champion. Tamil Nadu’s Naveenkumar R & Jeevan S finished as the runner up & the third position with a total of 11.73 & 9.40 points respectively.
Speaking after being crowned as the national champion Kishore said, “I would like to thank my coaches at Surf Turf for all the support they have given me. This win today is very special to me and I am happy that I could showcase my skills while competing against tough competitors.”
Goa’s Sofiya Sharma walked away with the national champion’s crown in the first-ever Groms Girls 16 & Under surf category. Sofiya with a total of 18.50 points the highest score of the tournament on all days impressed everyone with her surfing capabilities. Thanishka Mendon the youngest participant in the tournament at 9 years from Mangalore, Karnataka finished as the runner-up with a total of 12.23 points. Another Mangalorean surfer Saanvi Hegde finished third with a total of 11.33 points.
The day came to an end with an exhibition Expression Race where the Winners & runner-up of the men’s open and Groms Boys competed against each other. Ramesh Budhial emerged victorious in this as well followed by Ajeesh Ali. Naveenkumar R (Groms Boys 16 & Under) finished third while Kishore Kumar (Groms boys 16 & Under) finished fourth.