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Wed, 5 June 2019

A Corona J-Bay Open title could clear the way to a Saffa world title. Before you face palm, consider what Martin Potter did when dissed by Derek Hynd in 1988. Craig Jarvis reminds us.


FUTURE CALLS: Long-suffering Saffa fans still hold hope for the big guy. Photo WSL / Cestari

In 1988, in Surfer magazine, South African-born surfer Martin Potter was given a "No Chance" of a world title in a preview of the 1989 season by Australian surf journalist Derek Hynd - he of the finless slide. Potter, in Hynd’s estimate, didn't have the strength or the ability to close the deal, and was going to be relegated to the quarterfinal doldrums for the rest of his life. In fact, Hynd gave Pottz ‘no chance’ of winning the title from 1987 to 1994.

In an article on Stab Magazine, Hynd writes: "He was hanging with the wrong people, hanging with destructive people, socially destructive people,” remembered Hynd. “When Pottz didn't have his sycophants holding onto him, I thought he was just such a fantastic and pure athlete who could really see clearly.”

In his rating in the Surfer preview, Hynd wrote: "Still regarded by many as the world's best freesurfer. Very fast. Very stylish. Very powerful. Doesn’t need to prove a thing. The World Title is almost superfluous to his career. He doesn’t need it and his sponsors don't demand it."martin-potter

EXPLOSION: Pottz blew everyone apart when he exploded onto the scene in the 80s. Photo ASP

Well, not only did Pottz win the world title in 1989, when the hunger took over, he won something like the first four out of five events, and won the title with the biggest points difference between first and second in the history of the sport. He was totally dominant and no-one else came close to him the whole year.

Jordy is like Pottz. He has the size, the power and the aerial ability to wreak absolute carnage in every event at every location if he sets his mind to it.Jordy is like Pottz. He has the size, the power and the aerial ability to wreak absolute carnage in every event at every location if he sets his mind to it. He can win at the majority of venues on the Championship Tour, and to improve his backhand barrel riding he has moved to Pipeline and has started putting in the hours and the days at the notorious left-hander. It’s all in a bid to become the best there is, to have every single advantage and no disadvantages, and go all out for a world title. He just needs to turn on the hunger. He needs the trigger, the moment, the realisation that he is actually unstoppable if he wants to be, and the Warrior Mode will come out.JordySmithBellsBeach-2

FIGHTING SPIRIT: If Jordy can harness his hunger, he will be unbeatable. Photo WSL / Cestari

When Jordy gets into that mode, when he gets fired up and wants to win at all costs, then he literally becomes unstoppable.

He can win at the Oi Rio Pro and he can win at the Corona J-Bay Open, having won both before. He knows his way around Europe, and he can now firmly contend the event at Pipe. There is enough space in there for a world title. He just needs to open the floodgates.

Kelly Slater said that Jordy has multiple world titles in him, and Shaun Tomson said that he has the makings of a world title, but becoming a king in Hawaii would go a long way in helping him achieve his destiny. His move to the North Shore proves his intent, so can we be cautiously hopeful?

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