Durban - International surf lifesaving competition returns to Durban for the first time in a decade when the eleventh edition of the International Surf Rescue Challenge takes place over three days at North Beach on September 28, 29 and October 2.
Featuring some of the best male and female lifesavers in the world, the competition started in 1999 as a trans-Tasman rivalry between Australia and New Zealand before expanding to include South Africa in a Tri-Nations format.
In recent years the competition has grown to included teams from Canada, Germany, France, Great Britain, Spain, Japan and the USA, with every nation encouraged to send an open and a youth/development team to the competition.
This year South Africa, Australia and New Zealand will compete with athletes from Japan, Spain and the USA.
South Africa has selected strong open and youth teams that will include established stars like beach sprinters and flags specialists Ryle de Morny and Durbanite Mandi Maritz, swimmers Amica de Jager and Travis Misdorp, rescue stalwart Martin Binnedell, ironman stars Alice Edward, board star Anna Notten and ski specialists Josh Fenn, Nick Notten, and Dom Notten, who will captain the open team.
Marine SLC stalwart Carmel Billson is a threat to all the ocean events, and with Sasha-Lee Corris-Nordengen will be a formidable rescue unit.
""This event is an excellent example of lifeguards at the peak fitness and sharpness in competition among the best in the world," said Lifesaving South Africa president Dhaya Sewduth.
"This apex competition serves as a fantastic and exciting precursor to the World Conference on Drowning Prevention hosted by LSA in Durban from 8-10 October 2019 and showcases exactly what lifeguards do - train, compete, save lives!" he added.
Lifesaving South Africa's Director of Sport Craig van Rooyen says having the opportunity to host the event in Durban has many positives for the sport of lifesaving in South Africa.
"This event not only gives us the opportunity to showcase our local talents but also our lifesaving organisations and the pristine beaches of Durban to an international audience," said Van Rooyen.
"This event attracts over 180 competitors, spectators and supporters from all over the world, and generates a positive economic impact for the city and the country.
"We will see many world-renowned lifesaving athletes compete in various events over a three day period at North Beach which is home to Durban Surf Lifesaving Club, one of the largest and oldest clubs in South Africa," he added.
The 22 traditional surf lifesaving disciplines as contested at national and world championships will be fought for over the three days.
Based at the Durban Surf Lifesaving Clubhouse at North Beach the swim, board, surfski and beach events will be staged over three days on the weekend of September, 28 and 29 and concluding on Wednesday, October 2
Test 1 - Saturday 28 September
Test 2 - Sunday 29 September
Test 3 - Wednesday 2 October
South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Spain, Japan, USA.
Previous editions of the International Surf Rescue Challenge:
1999 Australia - Sydney
2001 New Zealand - Mount Manganui
2003 Australia - Gold Coast
2005 South Africa- Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and Durban
2007 Australia - Perth
2009 South Africa- Durban
2011 New Zealand - Mount Manganui
2013 Japan - Chiba
2015 Australia- Sunshine Coast
2017 New Zealand-Mount Manganui
Alice Edward, Amica De Jager, Anna Notten, Carmel Billson, Joshua Fenn, Mandi Maritz, Martin Binedell, Nicholas Notten, Ryle De Morny, Sasha Lee Nordengen, Travis Misdorp.
RESERVES: Melissa Corbett, Candice Murray, Sameer Matthews, Dominic Notten.
Ally Chislett, Celina Isaacs ,Connor Botha, Ellen Kleinsmidt, George Edward, Kira Bester, Liam Calvert, Matthew Fenn, Paige Horn, Ryan Chandler, Tatum Botha, Uli Hart.
RESERVES: Jade Wilson, Sulinke Van Den Berg, Nicolas Kingston, Jake Schoeman,
Gavin Harvey, Tayla Faulmann, Josh Kreft, Lauren Billson.
Dean Marais, Haydn Holmes, Claudio Miller, Luke Nisbet, Sean Carew.