The WSL event at J-Bay has been called off for the day after a shark was seen breaching just out past where the surfers were sat.
During their round four heat, competitors Jordy Smith, Felipe Toledo and Julian Wilson were pulled from the water and whisked back to land after the judges and several members of the water safety team spotted a mako shark breaching several times, about a hundred yards out the back of where the surfers were sitting.
The scene was reminiscent of a similar incident that went down at the Margaret River Pro earlier this year, with the heightened awareness and rapid response time on the part of the WSL serving as an indication of just how keen they are to avoid another Mick style brush up.
As there is only an hour left of light, commissioner Kieren Perrow made the call to call the event off for the day and reconvene in the morning. ‘I think they all looked quite happy about that’ he said of the surfers reaction to the decision.
‘I’m looking forward to coming back tomorrow and surfing the same waves with no risk!’ confirmed Felipe, before thanking the water safety team for hauling him out of the water for the second time this year.
If the conditions look the same when competition gets back under way, the heat will pick up where it left off, however if they look drastically different, there’ll be a re-start. Both Kieren and Julian suggested they thought a re-start would be the most likely scenario, as although the swell is predicted to be around the same size tomorrow, the wind is due to be lighter in the morning.