Eleven-time world champion Kelly Slater did not qualify for the US Olympic surf team at the Billabong Pipe Masters on Thursday before the sport's debut at the Tokyo Games next summer.
Slater, 47, was beaten in the semifinals by top Italian Italo Ferreira at Hawaii's famous Banzai Pipeline, ending the season without enough points to form the two-man team the United States will send to Japan.
John John Florence, 27, in Hawaii, took the last remaining place despite bowing in your drums in the quarterfinals, joining California's Andean Kolohe in the men's team. Carissa Moore and Caroline Marks have already qualified for the first female team of the USA team.
The early departure of Florence, a two-time world champion who was back in action for the first time in five months after a torn ACL, opened the door for Slater to qualify if he won Thursday's contest, but the Florida native fell short of expectations. . 14.77 to 2.57 score at the historic event on the north coast of Oahu.
"This is an absolute dream team," said USA Surfing CEO Greg Cruse. “Team USA not only has the best surfers in the world, they are spectacular representatives of our sport and country. His professionalism, passion and dedication to excellence are unmatched. "
Julian Wilson managed to score the last remaining spot on the Australian Olympic team. Queenslander have been eliminated in the last 16, but Jack Freestone's quarter-final defeat against Slater has earned Wilson a move to Tokyo alongside compatriot Owen Wright.
World Surfing League
Buzzer Beater! @kellyslater takes victory against @jackfreestone in the agonizing second quarterfinals. He will meet the world title contender @ ferreiraitalo15 in the semifinals.
All heat is history in the #BillabongPipeMasters. Watch it live! @ billabong1973 #VTCS pic.twitter.com/4YD43dtRzy
Last Thursday, Slater won his third Triple Crown title as the best overall surfer in the three end-of-season competitions after turning the trick in 1995 and 1998.
The Olympic surfing competition will be held at Shidashita Beach, also known as Shida, about 40 miles from Tokyo, in the middle of the Chiba Coast. The two-day contest, limited to high-performance artboards, will have a 16-day waiting period to ensure quality surfing.
. (tagsToTranslate) Tokyo 2020 Olympics (t) Surfing (t) US Olympic Team (t) Olympic Games (t) Sport (t) US Sports