This was probably gonna be my last commercial fishery match for quite a while and I wanted to give it my best. With bad weather forecast I mixed up some gbait for the method and cut a couple of tins of meat, and also made a few rigs and tied some hooks, all on Sat evening!
I was one of the last to arrive at the venue and heard tales of multiple 100lb+ bags coming out in recent matches, that sounded alright to me! Into the draw net and I pulled peg 17, in a corner again (I actually prefer open water, honest) and with the wind smack in my face. Dean Malin and Tony Rixon said it was a good draw and so I decided to fish for carp and go for the win. I set up the method feeder (but I was hoping not to have to use it) and two pole rigs, a 0.75gm for 5 mtrs with 0.16 to 16 PR36 for banded pellet, and a 4x16 for the margin which was about 4 ft deep, I couldn't find anything shallower.
I fed a cup of 6mm pellets out at 5 mtrs, some meat and pellets into my right margin, and corn and caster to the left. I started at 5mtrs with an 8mm pellet and did not have a bite despite a few blows coming up. I changed to a 6mm pellet and snared a hand sized skimmer and then a 1lb skimmer and that was all the action I had in the first hour! In the 2nd hour I caught 1 small carp from the right margin, and pulled out of a fouler. In the third hour I lost a carp in the margin that got under the pallet on peg 16 (forcing me to walk round and free the rig) and I lost a carp at 5 mtrs.
In the fourth hour I had an eel from the left hand margin, and 1 carp from the right. I changed my 5mtr rig to 0.14 and 16B911 with soft pellet. This brought another skimmer and a carp. I tried the method in desperation and this did yield one carp, but nothing else. The fifth hour saw 2 carp from the margin landed and more lost (foulers). The sixth hour saw 1 carp from the right hand margin, and 2 carp and a tench from the 5 mtr line. All in all it was shite and I lost as many carp as I hooked.
As you can probably tell I didn't have to good a day, but I did have a good laugh. Shane Caswell was next to me on peg 15 and he had a very bad day, landing just two carp for 8lb. He also had a few run ins with a problematic bramble and went hedge trimming to retrieve a rig. This after he told me he had fished the Doncaster canal last week and blanked, lol!
My 5lb of silvers and 31lb of small carp was 20lb short of taking any coin, and Rich Coles on peg 19 showed me how to do it coming 3rd with 59lb. Rich caught on paste next to the reeds for the first 4 hours, and then lost 10 and landed 1 in the last 2 hours, I did hear him cussing! Trig won the match, he has been very consistent this year, and unlike Samson losing his hair doesn't seem to make him weak! Tony was 2nd with 66lb.
Chris Fox won the silvers with just 10lb, bugger I should have used the worms I had decided to leave in the car.
Just a note about the Angling Times Winter League Final today, Dorking have won it, and I believe off the next peg Bathampton came last, sorry lads must try harder!