WSL / Ed Sloane
Forget the scenarios written a week ago about Medina's chances of being crowned in Portugal. The latter have been swept away with a flick of the wrist since Italo Ferreira passed through the area.
But the final sprint is launched. From now on, whether it is for Gabriel, Filipe or Julian, calculations are no longer possible. It will be necessary to give everything to Pipe next December (December 8 to 20). And if Medina could have been crowned in Portugal, he is suspected of having voluntarily extended the suspense to Hawaii (it's humour not an accusation).
Because Gabriel Medina is never as good as when he has to pick someone up. The Brazilian is never as good as when he is in adversity, pushed to his limits. Last year, John John inherited the role of hare. This year, it is Filipe Toledo or more recently Julian Wilson. It's almost as if winning by 10,000 points doesn't interest him. To switch to terminator mode, he must have someone to fight against. The competition? He loves it. Maybe more than any surfer on the tour.
A notch below her real level until the middle of the season (Teahupo'o), Medina has since switched to hunter mode with the ambition of seeking the ultimate title. And in our wildest scenarios, we even managed to imagine that winning the title in Portugal didn't interest Gabriel Medina. However, he could have been crowned as soon as Toledo was eliminated against Joan Duru in the third round and Julian Wilson was beaten in the quarter-finals. But Medina may well want to push the suspense to Hawaii....
The Brazilian needs something to motivate him. And for the suspense, nothing could be better than what happened in Portugal. The title, this year again, will be played at Pipe.
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