03SEP14: Maldives - Dawn revealed a predictably perfect day of surf, leading to an afternoon of celebration at the grand opening of the Maldives Open 2014 Crystal clear water and reeling left walls welcomed a mixed field of local and international surfers as well as supporters and hotel guests to the Adaaran Hudhuran Fushi Resort, home of one of the best waves the archipelago has to offer. But more than a welcome to the opening of this inaugural event, sanctioned by the Asian Surfing Championships, this special gathering went well beyond that joy with official announcements from the Maldives Minister of Tourism that will both improve and protect Maldives surfing for generations to come.
After welcoming speech and introduction by Maldives Body Boarding Association’s Vice President Mohamed Khushurwan Ahmed, and a speech by the ASC’s General Manager Tim Hain, it was with a joyful reception that the crowd greeted the words of Mr. Ahmed Adeeb, the Minister of Tourism, as he confirmed that the controversial issue of surf break exclusivity had officially come to an end, and that all Maldives surf breaks would be open to both locals and visitors alike.
Welcome news to the local surfers certainly and to tourists as well, as the Maldives have long represented some of the most pristine waters in some of the most flawless waves in the world, and now they will be welcome for all to enjoy.
Going further, Mr. Adeeb reaffirmed his five-year commitment to supporting the Maldives Open Surfing Competition, which is sanctioned by the ASC and organized by the Maldives Body Boarding Association, stating that his intention was to protect and grow the great and exciting sport of surfing for his country
In another impressive announcement, Mr. Adeeb also declared his commitment to expanding an aggressive International Heritage surfing site program to the innumerable perfect waves that break on the outer atolls of this island nation. Actual nature preserves that would protect not only the waves, but the reefs they break over and the stunning sea life that make the Maldives one of the most spectacular surfing destinations on earth.
In closing, he commended the MBBA on their initiative in creating the event with support of the ASC and great sponsors such as the Adaaran Hudhuran Fushi Resort, Sri Lankan Airlines and others, after which a traditional ceremonial dance was performed that reminded all of what a beautiful, exotic place the Maldives are and how important it is for all of us to join in to protect the Maldives culture and her seas, a country that faces the most peril from global warming despite the fact that they contribute nothing to it.
After the energy of the traditional dance, the local surfers invited all the international surfers into the line-up for a wild sunset session that served as a portent of all the action that is sure to thrill on tomorrow’s dawn as the first heat waxes up and hits the water at 8:00am.
The swell forecast for the Maldives Open 2014 is looking great for the Men’s Open, Women’s and Bodyboarding competitors that will take to the water starting on Thursday morning to battle it out for ASC points and their share of the total $15,000 USD prize money on offer.
So far, The Maldives Open 2014 is living up to its name as one of the most enviable surfing competitions to participate in, and if today is any indication, it will be for generations to come.
Keep up with all the action at the Maldives Open 2014 on Facebook and at the Asian Surfing Championships at www.asiansurfingchampionships.com.
The Maldives Open 2104 is sponsored by the Tourism Ministry of the Maldives, the Adaaran Hudhuran Fushi Resort, Sri Lankan Airlines, Allied Insurance, Kudo Surf, Red Bull, MBC TV M, Print Lab, and Event Maldives. Sanctioned and supported by the Asian Surfing Championships and the Association of Professional Bodyboarders.
Text and photos by Matt George – Chief Editor of Surf Time Magazine
For more about the Maldives:
The Adaaran Hudhuran Fushi Resort
The Maldives Tourism Department
The Maldives Body Boarding Association
About the Asian Surfing Championships (ASC)
The Asian Surfing Championships was established in 2010 as the progression of the highly successful Indonesian Surfing Championships that began in Bali, Indonesia in 2004. The mission of the ASC is to develop and progress the sport of surfing in Asia by assisting in the organizing and sanctioning of professional surfing events, which will help their growing surf communities and draw more attention to their areas for the progression of surfing locally, nationally, and throughout the Asian Region.
See more at http://www.asiansurfingtour.com