coffee convo Hwilsin tour talk writing WSL


The results are in – the mid year cut is official, and we now have the CT roster locked in for the back half of the 2023 World Tour. As you remember, I made some predictions before the year started. We’ll have a look at how I fared near the end of this post. For now, here are the victims of the ax.

Sammy Pupo

Nat Young

Jacko Baker

Miggy Pupo

Kelly Slater

Micahel Rodrigues

Maxime Huscenot

Jake Marshall

Kolohe Andino

Zeke Lau

Jadson Andre

Ramzi Boukhaim*

Carlos Munoz**

A couple of “surprises”, a few you probably could have guessed, and some unlucky customers. Carlos** was the injury replacement for the year, and Ramzi* did not surf in one event. Jadson got hurt and didn’t surf after Pipeline. Miguel Pupo also had to withdraw from the last 2 events, Bells and Margs, due to an injury. Very unfortunate ending of the year for three goofy footers and the beloved Costa Rican. 

Jake Marshall failed to get out of the Round of 32. Three of five losses came against former World Champions – Kelly, Medina and John John. He also lost to Ewing, a favorite for the title this year. Zeke Lau, Maxime Huscenot, and Kolohe Andino were 3 more surfers who did not land a result better than a 17th. 

Kelly and Michael Rodrigues could not crack the Quarters. With just one 9th place finish, they both bowed out in the Round of 32 in 4 of 5 events. Jacko Baker, Nat Young, and Sammy Pupo each had a Quarterfinal (5th place) showing in one event, but the other 4 results were 17th’s.

Only one surfer who went into Margies below the cutline survived – Barron Mamiya.

Which brings us to the list of surfers who did make the cut, those who will be vying for a top 5 position and a shot at the World Title. Here’s the list:

Joao Chianca

Jack Robinson

Filipe Toledo

Ethan Ewing

Griffin Colapinto

Ryan Callinan

John John Florence

Yago Dora

Leonardo Fiorivanti

Caio Ibelli

Connor O’Leary

Callum Robson

Gabriel Medina

Jordy Smith

Matthew McGillivray

Italo Ferreira

Liam O’Brien

Rio Waida

Kanoa Igarashi

Barron Mamiya

Seth Moniz

Ian Gentil

Ian, Kanoa, and Seth all made it over the line with two 9ths and three 17ths. It’s pretty crazy how close the tour actually is with the cut line – one heat can determine your year. Take Jacko Baker, for example. A lot of drama at Bells surrounding him and Filipe. If he had made that heat, he would have still been on tour. 

Now, on to how I did on my predictions. I correctly guessed 6 out of the 13 surfers who would be cut. Well, 6 for 12, because I didn’t have Carlos Munoz accounted for. That’s 50%. According to traditional schooling, I would have failed the test. However, it is a common conception that if you can be successful 52.4% of the time, you can be a break even sports bettor. To bolster my own confidence, I am erring on the side of the latter. These are the picks I made correctly, the ones I thought would be cut:



Jadson Andre

Kolohe Andino

Jake Marshall

Kelly Slater

These were my incorrect picks; the surfers I predicted to become victims, only to throw it in my face:

 Liam O’Brien

Rio Waida

Barron Mamiya

Jordy Smith

Callum Robson

Caio Ibelli

While the whole Jordy bit was a bit of comedy, I sincerely want to see him prove something in the back half. Otherwise, I wouldn’t mind if he just up and quit. Or fell off tour next year. What is he doing on tour at this point? Does he still think he’s got what it takes to win a title? Or even an event? J-Bay has to be what he’s holding on to. I guess I would have to point to his now-famous quote in the Stab series of ‘Why Surfers Get Paid’ when he is talking about Gabe and Italo’s shitty top turns. Maybe he should garner the new nickname “Big Dick Power Surfer”.

My biggest miss would have to be Caio. And I know I’ve been banging this drum, but I can sincerely imagine him winning a world title and becoming Adriano 2.0.

We also now know that Kelly and Miggy Pupo have been handed the wildcards for the back half. I’m going to save my disgruntled rant about the whole Kelly situation for my next post. I do agree with the Miggy choice though. Guy was 6th in the year last year and won Chopes. He would have made the cut had he not missed the last 2 events. I do feel terribly for Ramzi.

And with that, we are into the Final 5 race. Some predictions for that to come as well. I may or may not try to make an appearance at the Wave Pool. If for nothing other than a weekend off.

We’ll talk soon.



2 replies on “THE AXE”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *