Jordy Smith is the first SA surfer to qualify for the Olympics. Photo: WSL Janssens
Jordy Smith is the first SA surfer to qualify for the Olympics. Photo: WSL Janssens

Jordy to leave it all out in the surf

By Herman Gibbs Time of article published May 21, 2020

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CAPE TOWN 

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mso-no-proof:yes">– South African surfer Jordy Smith is ready to reboot his burgeoning career as he pursues his dream of winning Olympic Games gold and the World Surf League’s championship title.

Smith is currently ranked World No 3 behind the Brazilian duo of Italo Ferreira (No 1) and Gabriel Medina. He qualified for the Tokyo Olympics last October. He is the first SA surfer to qualify for the Games.

The 32-year-old Smith is a two-time world title runner-up (2010 and 2016) and over the last three years, he landed consecutive top five finishes on the world championship table.

At the start of May, Smith was training in Hawaii and by that time he had made numerous unsuccessful efforts to return to South Africa because of a national lockdown in the United States and later in SA.

However, given the lighter restrictions in the US, Smith could still train daily. Worldwide most airlines had stopped operating and efforts to return to South Africa was proving a nightmare until Smith and his wife Lyndall secured passage on a repatriation flight to Johannesburg. After he was cleared, a highly relieved Smith could fly back to the Mother City.

Smith is now more than ever determined to resume the quest for the elusive holy grail of world surfing. He was world runner-up on two occasions.

“My career goal is still to win the Olympics and a world title, whether that’s in 2020 or 2021,” said Smith.

“I think whenever the next event happens it will feel so much more intense. The build-up will be crazy, but my goal has always been to give it everything I have and leave it all out in the surf.

“I worked hard to get fit before the world tour was meant to kick off this year, so I want to make sure I maintain it and be ready for action once the world opens again.”

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