- WSL / Thomas Bennett

Over 80 of Asia's best Challenger Series hopefuls have arrived at Cloud 9 on the picturesque Island of Siargao in the Philippines ahead of the 2023 Siargao International Surfing Cup pres. By San Miguel. The 7-day World Surf League (WSL) Qualifying Series (QS) 1000 event will help decide the regional rankings ahead of the 2023 WSL Challenger Series and with a promising forecast on hand, the competition looks good to get underway tomorrow morning on Day 1 of the window.

The promising forecast has come much to the delight of current WSL Asia Regional QS rankings leader Kian Martin (SWE) who, on his second trip to the Philippines, is excited at the prospect of getting barrelled at Cloud 9, in a heat, with only a couple of other surfers out.

"This is my second time here and it is so good to be back," Martin said. "It's such an amazing wave - every time I've surfed Cloud 9 it's been so perfect. Siargao feels similar to home in Bali so it's nice to come to an event and feel so comfortable and at home. I'm currently leading the rankings on the Asia QS and I really want to keep the momentum going as I look to qualify for the Challenger Series in 2023. I'm just so happy to be here - this place is paradise and I can't wait to get tubed in a heat."

Kian Martin Kian Martin is no stranger to getting barreled in a jersey. - WSL / Tim Hain

Only a week after watching his older brother make history and become the first Indonesian to qualify for the WSL Championship Tour (CT), Ryuki Waida (IDN) comes into the Siargao International Surfing Cup pres. by San Miguel as a high seed and more motivated than ever for a solid result. The 19-year-old Balinese competitor is on his first trip to the Philippines and is looking forward to surfing heats in perfect barrels.

"I've never been here before and so far I'm loving it," Waida said. "The wave is so perfect, even when it is small it has such a good air section and then as it grows it's all about the barrel - it's an amazing wave for an event. I'm definitely inspired to do well here this week."

Ryuki Waida Ryuki Waida is looking forward to a strong showing here at Cloud 9. - WSL / Tim Hain

Women's top seed Nanaho Tsuzuki has just locked herself in a spot at the 2022 World Junior Championships but still has her eye firmly on a Challenger Series spot for 2023. Although she sits at number two on the WSL Asia regional rankings, the Japanese representative is still yet to claim a QS win and thinks the perfect barrels of Cloud 9 might be the perfect place to change that.

"I really like getting barrelled so Cloud 9 is a great wave for me," Tsuzuki said. "Scoring QS points whilst surfing perfect waves is incredible - I feel lucky to be competing here. The forecast for the event is looking good so I can't wait to get the competiton underway."

Nanaho Tsuzuki (JPN), Nias 2022 Nanaho Tsuzuki can't wait for her first heat at Cloud 9. - WSL / Tim Hain

The international field will have their work cut out for them as a hungry group of local Cloud 9 specialists look to continue their dominance at the event, including Filipino legends John Mark-Tokong (PHL) and Piso Alkala (PHL) and female hopefuls Nildie Blancada (PHL) and Vea Estrellado (PHL) who will all be looking to take the win for the locals.

Event directors will convene at Cloud 9 tomorrow at 7:00 am local time to make a call on getting competition underway.

The 2022 Siargao International Surfing Cup QS 1000 event will run at Cloud 9 from October 15 - 21. Be sure to tune in and watch it live at www.worldsurfleague.com or download the Free WSL App.

The 2022 Siargao International Surfing Cup is Presented by San Miguel. Supported by Next Gen -- In partnership with: Mayor Sol Matugas, Congressman Bingo Matugas, Philippines Sports Commission, Department of Tourism, Bagtik Moserbisyo, United Philippines Surfing Association, Vissla, Sisstr, Smart, Mountain Dew, Kudo Surf.

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