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Saturday 29 October, 2005
Santa Catarina, Florianopolis, Brazil

This photo courtesy of


Live on

While the world title showdown between Andy Irons (HAW) and Kelly Slater (USA) will be catching much of the attention at the Nova Schin Festival presented by Billabong in Brazil, Joel Parkinson meanwhile will be hoping to make an impressionable return from injury and be a thorn in the side of the tour front-runners.[/i]Parkinson returns to the Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour after an injury to his medial ligament in his knee forced him to withdraw from events in Japan, California and France.

His inclusion will bolster the radically depleted field, which, at the time of going to press, has nine withdrawals including injured Australians Taj Burrow (foot), Toby Martin (neck), Troy Brooks (knee) and Lee Winkler (wrist) and also will include Sunny Garcia (HAW), Luke Egan (AUS), Dean Morrison (AUS), Tim Curren (USA) and Shane Beschen (USA).

Taking the place of the withdrawals will be Brazilians Guilherme Herdy, Pablo Paulino, Adriano de Souza, Odirley Coutinho, Guga Arruda, Pedro Henrique, Flavio Costa, Yuri Sodre and Guilherme Ferreira.

Their inclusion amongst the elite should give the Brazilians valuable experience at the top level and with a passionate home crowd behind them, they will be doing their utmost to spoil the campaigns of their more seasoned rivals.

On top of the replacements will be wildcards Tom Curren (USA), Fabio Gouveia (Brazilian Pro Champion) and Diego Rosa (Santa Catarina, Brazil State Pro Champion).

The full round one draw is posted on

After being ranked at number five before his injury Parkinson has slipped back to 14th on the current ratings and will hunting to gain a solid result both here in Brazil and in the last event of the year at Pipeline, Hawaii.

“I’m really happy to be back,” said Parkinson. “I’ve dropped from 5th to 14th which is an obvious setback, so my aim for the next two events is to get back into the top 10.”

His recovery has been relatively speedy since the injury was quite severe, and while feeling solid, Parkinson will be wary of re-damaging the knee in the small, beach-break conditions in Brazil, which can cause stress to the lower body.

“The last few days I’ve gone from about 50 per cent to about 80 and I surfed today and felt unreal, so by the time the event starts I should be close to 100 per cent,” said Parkinson. “But I’ll still be careful. Because the waves in Brazil are smaller you have to create your own speed on the waves and that comes from your leg drive which obviously will place a lot of pressure on my knees.”

Parkinson indicated that he would like to see the race for the Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour go down to the wire in Hawaii. Slater, in the number one slot on the rankings could potentially tie up the title here and Parkinson joked that he would love to prolong Slater’s celebrations by hopefully knocking him out early (if the draw allows) which will potentially open the door for Irons to claim another victory and keep his title hopes alive.

“Yeah, hopefully I can be a thorn in the side for Kelly,” Parkinson laughed. “I’d love to see the title go down at Pipe!”

Weather forecasts have predicted excellent conditions for the latter half of the upcoming week, continuing the run of incredible luck for the Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour – now dubbed “The Dream Tour”. Organisers are expecting to begin the first round on Monday morning and could potentially go mobile if wind conditions are unfavourable.