Maldivian pro-surfer Ahmed Agil (Ammadey) has advanced to the second round of the World Surfing Games currently ongoing at El-Salvador, organized by International Surfing Association (ISA).
Ammadey's advancement to the second round of the tournament is a significant achievement as it marks the first time a Maldivian surfer has reached this stage in the competition. Several Maldivian surfers who competed in the 2019 Games held in Japan were not included in the top two positions of the first-round heats, and had to compete in the Repechage events.
The heats for the tournament began on Wednesday, May 31, with Ammadey representing the Maldives as the only surfer from the country to participate on the first day. In heat 11 of round one, Ammadey competed against Sebastian Hernandez from Mexico, Kaspar Hamminga from the Netherlands, and Sivaraj Babu from India.
Ammadey performed well in the heat, securing the second position with a total of 6.36 points. He scored 3.43 and 2.93 in his two best waves. The heat's winner, Hernandez, achieved a high score of 16.34 points, with 8.77 and 7.57 in his two best waves. Hamminga finished in third place with a total of 6.10 points, while Babu landed in the bottom with 3.97 points.
Hamminga and Babu will have the opportunity to compete in the Repechage event, while Ammadey and Hernandez have advanced to round two of the main event.
In heat six of round two, Ammadey faced tough competition from Brazil's Gabriel Medina, Costa Rica's Carlos Munoz, and Ireland's Jack Scott. Ammadey finished the heat in the last position, while Medina emerged as the winner with a score of 15.27 points. Munoz secured the second spot, and Scott landed in third place.
Ammaday will next be competing in heat five of the Repechage 2 event, where he will once again face Hamminga alongside France’s Joan Duru and Puerto Rico’s Ricardo Delgado.
In heat 43 of round one, Maldivian surfer Ismail Rasheed competed against Mexico's Alan Cleland, Netherlands' Beyrick de Vries, and India's Ramesh Budihal. He landed in the bottom of the heat securing 6.23 points while the heat was won by Mexico’s Cleland with 15 points. Netherlands’ surfer de Vries landed second spot with 9.66 points while Budihal secured third place with 6.43 points.
Following his defeat in the main event, Rasheed next went to compete against Puerto Rico’s Dwight Pastrana and Gerasimos Veneris of Greece in heat 22 of the Repechage 1 event. He landed second with 5.94 points while Pastrana secured a heat win with 13.16 points, while Veneris lost the round with 2.50 points.
His second-place win at the Repechage 1 event meant that Rasheed will next be seen in heat 22 of the Repechage 2 event. Rasheed is expected to face off de Vries once more along with Malakai Martinez from Costa Rica and Zukas Loyning from Norway.
Hoodh Ahmed, who competed in heat 39 of the round one landed in third place with 6.27 points while Mexico’s Jhonatan Corzo won the heat with 11.10 points and Netherlands’ Tom Boelsma secured second spot with 7.53 points. India’s Ajeesh Ali landed in the bottom of the heat with 5.13 points.
Hoodh next competed in heat 19 of the Repechage 1 event against Ukraine’s Ruslan Kulish and Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed Kurdi, and emerged as the heat’s victor with 6.17 points. Kurdi placed second with 3.10 points while Kulish landed in the bottom with 1.86 points.
With his Repechage 1 win, Hoodh will next compete against Costa Rica’s Tomas King, Ireland’s Lorcan Southcombe and Brazil’s Joao Chianca in heat 19 of Repechage 2 event.
A total of 297 surfers from 64 countries are participating in the Games, which serves as a qualifier event for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.