Stab Magazine | Gallery: Kelly Slater Breaks Foot At J-Bay

Stab High Japan Presented By Monster Energy Will Be Broadcast Live On June 21st and June 22nd from 5 PM - 10 PM PDT


Gallery: Kelly Slater Breaks Foot At J-Bay

A highline to closeout tube means Kelly now has to fly 30 hours to the US for surgery. Stab is on the scene.

news // Jul 18, 2017
Words by Words and
Reading Time: 3 minutes

After a relatively slow start to his competitive year, Kelly Slater was looking in peak shape and performance this week out at Supertubes, South Africa. He looked to be a contender to take the win from Jeffreys. All that was before he pulled into a warped barrel up at Boneyards and damaged his back (right) foot. 

While Kolohe Andino and Jadson Andre battled it out in the fourth heat of round two to stay in the competition, in-form Slater was tearing up the heavier waves atop the point at Boneyards. Paddling for a bigger one, Slater stood up tall, highlining the first few sections before driving into the infamously heavy end section of Boneyards. “I thought about jumping off,” commented Kelly, “but I drove deep inside and got hit by a shock-wave of whitewater which exploded back against the back of my board, and right foot. I think there is a hole in my board where my foot was forced through it. I think I’ve broken my metatarsals.”  

JBayOpen AlanvanGysen 0595

The fateful highline.

Moments later Kelly was seen struggling over the rocks in obvious pain. A local surfer (and the man behind the opulent contest build) Donovan Zoetmulder, photographer Maarten van de Velde and I assisted Kelly to the beach and on up to Grant Twiggy Baker’s aunt and ex-Billabong Africa CEO Cheron Kraak’s home under arm and shoulder. Kelly unable to put pressure on his back foot. Twiggy on site for the same heavy surf and to watch the comp promptly instructed his wife Kate to get ice while he fetched a pair of scissors to cut Kelly’s suit for ease of removal – much to Kelly’s disappointment. 

After a quick phone call the crew from WSL – together with local charger and man overseeing everything for the event Koffie Jacobs, arrived with paramedics to assess and transport Kelly to the local hospital for X-rays. 

JBayOpen AlanvanGysen 0654

Kelly will be out for Chopes.

Sitting quietly alone after getting warm, Kelly looked up at a set unloading on the point into the contest area. With ice on his foot he leaned down with his hand over his forehead, processing what this injury meant before posting to Instagram:

You ever folded your entire foot backwards? If you try it sometime, this is what it might look like. I pulled into a barrel this morning and the whitewash bounced the board back into my foot as I hit the closeout, taking all the pressure into the metatarsals. Kinda like smashing my foot with a big hammer as hard as I can. Sorta feels like I’m giving birth out of my foot right now! I’m guessing surgery and 6 week holiday is in order. Not looking forward to 30 hour flight home before surgery though. Ouch! It sucks but so many people deal with such horrible things around this world every day that a broken foot is pretty minor in the scheme of things. Sometimes a bad thing is a good thing. I’ll make the best of my time off. #ThatsGonnaLeaveAMark#INeedElephantTranquilizers

That means Kelly is definitely out of Teahupoo and the Lowers world tour event is a dubious one. 


Comments are a Stab Premium feature. Gotta join to talk shop.

Already a member? Sign In

Want to join? Sign Up


Most Recent

Allow Us To Introduce The YETI Ladybirds And Bottle Rockets Of Stab High Japan Presented By Monster Energy

Here's our schoolyard pick for teams; who will win the most cred at the lunch…

Jun 17, 2024

Prediction: Moving The WSL Finals To Fiji Will Kill Off Two More Surfing Superstars

Is this JJF's time to collect his titles? We checked the stats.

Jun 17, 2024

Confirmed: Fiji To Host 2025 WSL Finals

Cloudbreak will remain on tour until 2026.

Jun 17, 2024

What’s The Secret To Powersurfing?

Taylor Knox, Kyuss King, and Jessi Miley-Dyer tackle a trio of questions in our third…

Jun 16, 2024

How To Win Stab High Japan, Presented By Monster Energy

A statistical analysis of the 493 airs attempted in previous chlorinated editions.

Jun 16, 2024

Watch: An Intimate Portrait Of The Wave, Village, And People At The End Of The Road

Oxbow’s ‘Children of Teahupo’o’ is playing exclusively on Stab Premium for the next two weeks. 

Jun 15, 2024

Fuck It, Run The Entire CT In Indo

A historic beginning to the Indonesian dry season.

Jun 14, 2024

Ferrari Boyz: Holly Wawn

"I've had 4, 5, maybe 6 cars... I'm a car dealer I reckon."

Jun 13, 2024

A Miscalculated Shallow Dive, Neck-First, Into The Waters Of Japanese Surfing

How is surfing different in the land of cherry blossoms?

Jun 13, 2024

How Has Ian Crane Made 4/5 Stab High Finals?

And who he's most afraid of competing against in Japan.

Jun 13, 2024

“I Haven’t Seen Anyone That Young And That Keen For Heavy Waves In A Decade” —Shane Dorian

Jacob Turner is 16 years old and trying to paddle tow sets at Teahupo'o...on his…

Jun 12, 2024

Long Read: 1,000 Ways To Die In Indonesia

18,000 islands of beautiful people, world-class waves, and danger around every corner.

Jun 11, 2024

Watch: Craig Anderson And Kaito Ohashi Find (Mostly) Empty Waves In Southeast Asia

Oh, and enter to win a grand worth of DB gear.

Jun 11, 2024

Brad Gerlach Rode A 600cc Motorbike Through Europe’s 1980’s Psychedelic Renaissance  

"Fuck London. Let’s just buy motorcycles tomorrow and drive to France, man."

Jun 11, 2024

Caroline Marks Goes Two-In-A-Row And John John Florence Wins First CT Event Since 2020 At The Surf City El Salvador Pro

Plus, we asked Chris Cote for a look into the commentary team's psyche and Griff…

Jun 9, 2024

Why Is Mavericks Core Getting Overrun By Yuppies?

And other questions from our audience — answered by Pete Mel, Mick Fanning, and Joel…

Jun 9, 2024

Everything Worth Remembering From 4 (Mostly) Forgettable Quarterfinals In El Salvador

Plus, what's the consensus on the Griff vs. João kerfluffle?

Jun 8, 2024

Wildcard Big-dogs Italo, Yago Pops The Cork, And Griffin Cops An Ambiguous Interference On Day 2 In El Salvador

"Honestly, that was a bad... uhh I mean, a tough call." - Strider

Jun 8, 2024