Three into two won't go

Stu Nettle
Swellnet Dispatch

If you recall, late last year the WSL controversially denied an injury wildcard to Caio Ibelli, who injured his foot while training for Margaret River. Instead the two wildcards went to John John Florence and Kelly Slater, who surfed a number of events and was documented chasing swells while mending his 'injured' foot.

This year the injury wildcards aren't quite as controversial, though the WSL again has to make three go into two.

The three surfers who've applied are Adriano De Souza, who injured his ACL at Portugal in 2018, surfed three events mid-year but ultimately succumbed to the injury, Leo Fioravanti who injured his shoulder at The Box, and Mikey Wright who first injured his back in the Volcom Pipe Pro 2018, surfed the first three CTs, but withdrew from the rest of the year due to complications. 

ADS gets carted from the water in Portugal (WSL/Poullenot)

All three surfers injured themselves in competition, which is one of the criteria for choosing widcards.

Another criteria is past achievements, and with ADS a past world champ he's a shoo in for the first injury wildcard.

That leaves Leo and Mikey.

Leo has qualified for the CT via the QS twice, in 2016 and 2018. Mikey has never qualified for the CT via the QS - his highest place was 22nd in 2017 - however in 2018 he was gifted eight CT wildcards and finished 12th on the strength of those results. A higher CT place than Leo has ever finished.

If the WSL follows their 'pathways' model then Leo, who's qualified twice via the QS, should get the nod.

However, if CT results count, then Mikey, who has a better record at the top level, should receive it.

Now, after digesting all that, it's worth keeping in mind that despite being denied an injury wildcard, Caio Ibelli picked up an assortment of replacement starts on the CT this year and qualified for the 2020 tour that way. Whoever misses out on the second wildcard may take some consolation in that.

Over on the women's side there's very little controversy with only one surfer, Tyler Wright, going for the lone injury wildcard.

Comments

sacash's picture
sacash's picture
sacash commented Friday, 20 Dec 2019 at 5:35pm

As much as I love Mikey he should go back and qualify through the QS seemed a bit unfair getting onto the CT like he did

RogersSam's picture
RogersSam's picture
RogersSam commented Saturday, 21 Dec 2019 at 10:18am

i could watch Mullet man all day but not Leo

jamespeach's picture
jamespeach's picture
jamespeach commented Saturday, 21 Dec 2019 at 10:23am

Logic says Leo
But heart says Mikey, he draws crowds and fans and is exciting as f*ck compared to Leo filling in the numbers and never actually doing well

mibs-oner's picture
mibs-oner's picture
mibs-oner commented Sunday, 22 Dec 2019 at 8:59am

Except for his first comp back after 6 months out

jamespeach's picture
jamespeach's picture
jamespeach commented Sunday, 22 Dec 2019 at 9:32am

Panda won a comp once
Still wasn’t exciting
Leo is a great surfer - and seems top bloke
Just saying I find Mikey much more exciting and good mixes it up Which is what is needed

flow's picture
flow's picture
flow commented Saturday, 21 Dec 2019 at 10:32am

So Kelly still going around?

Solitude's picture
Solitude's picture
Solitude commented Saturday, 21 Dec 2019 at 12:09pm

Any actual details surrounding Mikey’s back?

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Sunday, 22 Dec 2019 at 9:14am

Great to see Caio put in the work and made the cut this year.
Great effort ! Keep it going !

Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67 commented Sunday, 22 Dec 2019 at 5:41pm

Agree - Mikey is just what the tour needs to liven things up, ADS...what? Sorry, i just dozed off.

jacksprat's picture
jacksprat's picture
jacksprat commented Wednesday, 25 Dec 2019 at 12:41pm

Were you looking at that world title trophy on the mantle piece at the time?

onetimeonly

Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67 commented Thursday, 26 Dec 2019 at 10:19am

Yeah Jack I was - and wondering how the fuck he was ever gifted a world title. The Wozzle was so desperate for a Brazzo world champ they gave Medina the biggest overscore in history for a lame spin at 1-2 foot onshore beach park slop, costing Mick his rightful fourth world title.