8 Jul 2013

Surfer hit by whale has no memory of what happened

10:30 am on 8 July 2013

A New Zealand doctor who was surfing at Bondi Beach in Sydney on Sunday has a whale of a tale to tell - if only he could remember it.

Bishan Rajapakse, an emergency doctor in Sydney, was knocked out cold by a whale that probably hit him with its tail.

Dr Rajapaske says the whale, likely to have been a southern right whale, had been swimming around and was about three metres from his face. After that, he says, he remembers nothing until he woke up on the beach with a lifeguard standing over him. Media reports say he was thrown in the air.

Dr Rajapaske says his girlfriend has told him his surfboard is badly dented, leading him to believe the whale's tail hit it. He says he suffered only a headache and, despite being knocked out, still loves water sports and marine mammals.