Words by Gero Lilleike
For those of you who’ve been living under a rock for too long and don’t know who Matt Bromley is, wake the hell up! Matt is a man who takes no prisoners and he is one of South Africa’s hardest charging big wave surfers alongside the likes of Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker and Frank Solomon to name a few and you may even have seen him striking a pose on the cover of ZigZag Magazine, numerous times.
Last week saw the re-awakening of the beast that is Dungeons in Cape Town, possibly for the last time this year, and Matt Bromley was out there doing what he does best, surfing big-ass waves to his heart’s content. When the swell gets large and dangerous, most people run for the hills, but not Matt, he comes out to play, he drops-in, stands tall and gets the biggest barrels you can imagine, all with a nice big smile on his face and that’s what he’s about.
I met Matt for the first time a few months ago just before he was about to embark on a ‘slab hunting’ mission in Western Australia and I can honestly say that he’s one of the friendliest, most grounded and genuine surfers I have ever come across. That’s not surprising though because surely getting barreled on the world’s biggest, most terrifying waves must have a positive effect on you and Matt is a great example of positive energy personified. I threw a couple of questions his way to learn more about him and being the nice guy that he his, he answered them. Check out the interview below.
[GL) What is your full name and do you have any weird nicknames?
[MB] Matt Bromley “Bromdog”
[GL] When were you born into this world?
[MB] 12 September 1991
[GL] Where do you live?
[MB] Kommetjie, Cape Town
[GL] How do you pass your time?
[MB] I study part-time and I travel the world as a professional free-surfer.
[GL] What do you love most and why?
[MB] Waves, because they come from God. I’m constantly in awe of creation.
[GL] What are your professional achievements?
[MB] 3 x SA Junior Surfing Champion, 2 x SA Captain and 3 x Covers of ZigZag Magazine
[GL] Do you have any sponsors? If so, who are they?
[MB] Billabong, Monster Energy, Nixon, VZ, Kustom, Dakine, Futurelife and Virgin Active
[GL] What has been your most memorable sporting achievement so far?
[MB] Beating Jordy Smith at my home break when he was ranked world number 1. That was in the Coldwater Classic.
[GL] Do you have any other interesting hobbies?
[MB] Spear fishing. I love it! It compliments big wave surfing because it teaches you to be comfortable under the water and increases your lung capacity.
[GL] When and how did you start surfing?
[MB] My Dad got me into surfing at the tender age of 6. With the passion he had for surfing, I couldn’t not be a surfer.
[GL] In all the world, where is your favorite wave and why?
[MB] Teahupoo, Tahiti. It’s the most terrifying wave in the world as well as the most rewarding, if you survive it.
[GL] If you could change anything, what would it be?
[MB] I would have given more time in my life to previously disadvantaged people and helping those in need. But the good thing is that I’m still young and have lots of time in the future for this.
[GL] In what ways do you think surfing or sport in general can empower the youth in South Africa?
[MB] It brings a smile to EVERYONE!! When you enter the water, you leave your worries on the beach. This rejuvenation of joy and appreciation for the water saves kids from a life of crime because it keeps them off the streets and in the water.
[GL] If you had the chance to speak to the President of South Africa, what would you say?
[MB] Get everyone in the water and inject the stoke into every community.
[GL] What is your message to the youth of South Africa?
[MB] Put your trust in God and take every opportunity to enjoy his creation.
If you wish to read more about Matt Bromley and his big wave surfing escapades, I strongly suggest you follow his blog at http://bromdogsblog.wordpress.com or follow him on Twitter @bromdog783