Mangalore, Jun 1 (IANS): Chennai's, Groms surfer, Kishore Kumar, stunned everyone with his performance under testing conditions and made his way into the semifinals of the 4th edition of the Indian Open of Surfing with the highest score of 12.67 at the Sasihithlu beach, here on Thursday.
Apart from Kishore, the other surfers who got high scores from the judges were Tayin Arun (10.83), Dinesh Selvamani(09.53), Sekar Pachai (09.0) Harish P(8.63) and Selvam M(08.53).
Winds and rain played spoilsport at the end as the judges had to call it a day before the proceedings of the Women's Open semi-finals could begin. The said category will now be played on Day 2 on Friday.
The first day's round saw Karnataka and Tamil Nadu surfers dominate the proceedings in both the Men's open and Groms (U16) categories. 12 surfers from Round 1 in men's category today advanced to the Round 2 where they will meet another 16 surfers who already have qualified for the second round based on their rankings in last year.
A total of 28 surfers from the men's open category will battle it out tomorrow in the Round 2 to ensure their place for the quarterfinals that are scheduled to be held later in the day.
Dinesh Selvamani, who registered the highest score of 09.53 on Thursday from the judges in the men's open category said,"The conditions and competitions were equally challenging. The field for tomorrow's Round is very strong and anyone can make their way into the quarterfinals. I am looking forward to surfing in my natural style and seal a quarterfinal spot."
The Groms (U16) category also saw a stiff competition from Tamil Nadu and Karnataka surfers as four surfers from each state have booked their semi-final berths which are scheduled for tomorrow.
Speaking after securing his semifinal slot, the Surfing Federation of India's future talent programme scholar Kishore Kumar said, "This wasn't my best performance as the waves were different from what I am used to back home in Chennai. The conditions were also very challenging today and I could have made a better score but I am satisfied that I made it to the semi-finals. I hope the conditions will be favorable tomorrow as I take on the waves and seal my finals slot."
Earlier, the day began with an energetic performance from local students who performed a folk-dance form of Karnataka called Chende. This was followed by the official opening of the Indian Open of Surfing competition by dignitaries, Dhananjaya Shetty, Director Surfing Swamy Foundation, Manikya Jain, Deputy Director Karnataka Tourism Mangalore and Ram Mohan Paranjape, VP, Surfing Federation of India and Partner, Mantra Surf Club.
"The conditions were good and clean early in the morning. Wind set in a little earlier than expected, so competition went on hold at Noon. Overall it was a good start to the competition with surfers making best of the conditions available," Competition Director, Nawaz Jabbar was quoted as saying in a media release.
The fourth edition of the Indian Open of Surfing, which begins the calendar year for Indian Surfing, is being hosted from June 1-3. The three-day premier surfing competition of India is the official national championship of the Surfing Federation of India -- the governing body for the sport of surfing.