Glenn wasn't that keen on this match at Landsend as his results aren't great there, neither are mine come to that! However, with a bit of persuasion and after his week of bagging he fell for it. Our day started well in that I picked him up on time and we got to Shipham cafe trouble free. The breakfast was excellent and I bumped into some old friends (so old they didn't recognise me, lol) and we were soon on the road again. It was not long after we came across a "Road Ahead Closed" sign, we tried to call some anglers if this was for real but got no answer and so we decided we should follow the diversion. The diversion took us around 10+ miles out of our way and we had to ring up again (got an answer this time) to advise we would be late. Not sure if we were the only ones to not know about the diversion but hey ho!
Ten minutes past the draw we arrived and I may have fired off a few "fecks" at Tony who told me to calm down! He held out two (he said good) tickets and I took one first and had peg 5, still drawing near to peg 7 then! Glenn was on 16 and off he went. I soon got to peg 5 passing John Bradford on 1, Dave Evans on 3 and Leon Hubbard was my close neighbour on 6. With the peg having silvers form I was glad I had some casters with me, I was going to feed these by hand into the left margin and pot in at full length to my left a bit. Pellet would be fed at full length in front of me and meat a couple metres out and to my right. Just before I set up my rigs I had them out on my bait waiter table, a gust of wind (which was blowing in my face) then somehow turned round and blew the rigs into the lake. Two winders sunk before I could scoop them up and I saved two others, oh bugger 2 of my favourite floats gone. So rigs now set up were, a 0.3grm PB Inter 4 for the caster lines (same depth as it happened) a 4x14 job for pellet (it was so windy it needed this) and a 4x12 Durafloat for the meat.
I fed my lines and before I finished Tom Thick on peg 10 was playing a carp, he really is relentless. I started on a soft pellet hoping for some F1's or skimmers etc, but after 5 minutes I hooked a 3lb carp which was fun on 0.12 line. One more bite on the pellet line which I missed so onto the long caster line which gave me a a couple of small perch and then a decent skimmer. This line dried up and so I tried swapping between the two lines but no more bites came for a while. Leon was struggling too with an F1 and a few roach, but Dave had 3 carp on meat. I tried the margin line and was rewarded with some regular bites from small perch, but I did manage to bump a better one. Bites dried up here but I wasn't to concerned and carried on feeding it, but the other lines were not playing ball and by now Leon was getting the odd carp, but losing one under his pallet he stepped up onto 0.14 and had a few skimmers! I had fed softened 4mm pellets but Leon had fed micros, he offered me some and I took him up on his offer. Fifteen minutes later I landed an F1 from the micro line, and 10 minutes later another, here we go....not. A look in the margin again on caster yielded a big skimmer and a few more perch plus some bumped / lost fish, grrr!
For the remainder of the match only the caster lines threw up any bites, I lost a carp on the long line and landed a 6lb common, and managed to bump / lose a few what I assume were perch. With an hour to go the margin started showing signs of bubbling and I had my best time, but was still frustrated. I took a carp, lost a fouler, had a crucian, a golden tench, a few perch and bumped / lost a few and missed about 5 down the plug hole bites......
When the match finished I told Leon to come and have a look at the bubbling and I fished on for one more, I did hook something else (carp or tench) but it snagged me in the margin just to round things off nicely, lol! My silvers went 19lb and my carp 13lb for 32lb odd. Leon had 15lb of silvers and an extra 2 carp saw him surpass me. Jon Bradford had 20lb of silvers from peg 1 and had his margin bubbling too but said he could not get a bite! Tom had 60lb (with 25lb of silvers) from peg 10 and Mat Toomes did well on peg 19 to get 32lb of silvers and only 3 carp. I think pegs 20 and 21 also did the best with carp. Tony will have everything on his blog I'm sure as he won it.
Not long after I weighed in Glenn arrived wanting to go home, and we soon exited the carp park, having arrived last in the morning we left first at the end! We took a different route home that was still extra miles but at least we had the feeling we were heading the right way, then just as we were getting towards Hicks Gate a young female driver tried to cut me up forcing me to slam on the brakes at the same time as she bottled it. Fuck knows how we didn't touch as all I could see was her car millimetres from my front wheel. She then after being in a rush hung back a long way behind me obviously shitting herself, silly mare. So the end of not one of my better days, but that's fishing. It could have been worse I guess, I could have been Martin McMahon sat next to Tony Rixon taking a big battering. As they say, there's always someone worse of than you and I just remember it's good to be fishing and looking forward to going again. Oh and finally happy birthday to Leon Hubbard who will be 50 later this week, he still looks under 40 to me!