Sunday, 27 June 2010

Two Day Festival @ Trinity, Day Two. Sunday 27th June 2010

After yesterdays section win, I was hoping for an end peg, preferably 15 or 23 as this was the end of the lake with the wind blowing into it. I partly got my wish, as I drew peg 33, the end peg that Jacko won his section from the day before (although as well as an end peg, he had two empty pegs to his right, as Justin (can't remember his surname) from Megabaits, who had drawn 32, unfortunately had to leave before the start, due to an incident at his shop)

Jacko had drawn 32 today, the unfished peg!! and Andy Hembrow, the other section winner had drawn 30, so all three section winners from Saturday were in the same section. My rigs were identical to Saturday's, with the exception of a 'stalking rig', although by the time the match started, all the cruising/basking fish had disappeared.

Jacko had caught all his fish from the margins on Saturday, but the clouds of mud weren't there today, so neither were the fish. I had 2 fish after an hour on the waggler, it was flat calm in front of me, whilst further up the lake there was a good ripple. The margins showed no sign of fish for the first four hours, I couldn't get a bite on the paste at 10m, so carried on picking odd fish off on the waggler. With a couple of hours to go, I saw the first swirl and tail in the margin, dropping into the margin with meat saw a fish around three pounds in the net. Next put in and a foul hooker tore off, before the hook pulled and that was the end of margin activity.

Whilst listening to the England shambles on the radio, I managed to coax anther 3 fish from the margin, giving me a total of 15 fish, one less than yesterday. I knew I had Jacko beaten on the next peg (he'd had a silver bashing session) and Andy Hembrow claimed 45lb. Chris Ware on peg 6 in my section had a run of fish towards the end, so it was going to be close. As it happened, as usual, I was in the lowest weight section, but managed to put 54.00 on the scales to win the section and the festival, with a maximum 12 points. I was sweating at the weigh in, Chris Ware had put 50.14 on the scales, the scales and weigh sling were near the edge and I was going to ask for them to be moved back, I didn't bother and one fish managed to slip out of the weigh sling and back into the lake. Good job it didn't cost me....

Glen Calvert won on the day with 108.15 from peg 15, that was end peg on either side of the lake for Glen over the two days.

Sunday result:

1) Glen Calvert 108.15 peg 15 (section win)
2) Kev Perry 72.01 peg 10 (section win)
3) Dave Roper 59.14 peg 23
4) Lewis Jones 56.00 peg 13
5) Chris Fox 54.00 peg 33 (section win)
6) Chris Ware 50.14 peg 6

Silvers top spot was shared, Mark Bromsgrove & Rich Coles both weighing 19.08

Festival Overall

1) Chris Fox 12 points 112.07
2) Glen Calvert 11 points 190.08
3) Kev Perry 10 points 147.05
4) Andy Hembrow 9 points 176.08
5) Lewis Jones 9 points 79.13
6) Misha Herring 8 points 91.05
7) Lance Tucker 8 points 79.11
8) Dave Roper 8 points 77.02

A nice couple of days, thanks to Andy's boss for sponsoring the peg fees, to Kev for organising it and it was nice to pick up a few quid.

Two Day Festival @ Trinity, Day One. Saturday 26th June 2010

I've fished this festival for the last couple of years and was looking forward to this one, it ususally comprises of a day on Woodland and a day on Wildmarsh. Unfortunately this year saw a withdraw of a sponsor and a lack of entries, Kev Perry and Andy Hembrow stepped in to run it, Andy's boss at Brittons Ash Garage in Taunton provided some sponsorship.

It was intended to be a 20 pegger with both matches on Woodland, but the World Cup saw a couple of late withdraws (although after listening to it on the radio, I'm glad I fished!!)

As it was down to 17, Kev had three sections, two of 6 and one of 5 (which 6 points would be awarded to for winning), to try and keep things fair, it was three pegs either side of the lake at each end which were sections and the middle pegs were the third section. This meant the ends of the lake weren't in, giving everyone a waggler or feeder chuck.

An end peg would have been nice, but I drew 29, in the middle section. With Rich Coles on my left, we could have our usual 'grumpy old men' conversation about the good old days of big matches, decent payouts and the old days on the river, with the sessions in the pub afterwards.

My intentions were to keep it simple, a couple of pellet wagglers set up, with 0.17 hooklengths and size 16 B920 hooks. A paste rig for full depth, a pellet rig that would do full depth, which as a MW diamond, on 0.17 with a 0.15 hooklength and a 16 B911. A Malman margin float on 0.19 to a 0.17 hooklength with a 14 B920 and a paste rig comprising a blob on 0.19 with a 12 paste hook.

Plumbing up I found a nice shelf in the margin and around 8' on the paste line at 12.5m. At the start I fed the margin with meat and pellet, then fished the pellet waggler, the fish weren't queing up on the waggler line snd I had a couple in the first hour. The paste line at 12.5m produced one fish, then a couple of foul hookers, so it was back onto the waggler, plugging away at this put another couple in the net.

I could see my section was fishing fairly hard, so I decided to have a look in my margin at the halfway point, if I went in with meat on the hook, it was taken straight away by the hordes of roach, so switching to hard pellet saw a few fish come from this line.

I ended the day with 16 carp and 3 roach (Rich Coles had a roach fishing session and won the silers with 12lb of whitebait size roach).

The scales got round to me and I had a section win, with 58.09 (the 09 was the three roach!!) Andy Hembrow had emptied it on peg 15, winning on the day with 141.10

1) Andy Hembrow 141.10 peg 15 (section win)
2) Glen Calvert 81.09 peg 23
3) Kev Perry 75.04 peg 13
4) Steve Jackson 62.12 peg 33 (section win)
5) Misha Herring 60.13 peg 6
6) Chris Fox 58.09 peg 29 (section win)

Four of the top six were end pegs (15, 23, 33 and 6) I needed an end peg or a decnt draw in the middle section on Sunday, to build on the section win.

Friday, 25 June 2010

Thursday Costcutter, Lost fish prove crucial. 24/06/10

I keep promising myself to get to Viaduct and learn a little about the place, today was one of the first opportunities I've had. The match was on Cary, a lake that I've only match fished once before, on peg 80, which in all honesty, wasn't too good. That aside, I need to get my head round these big weight venues and how to approach them.

I decided before I went, that I'd only take 3 baits, pellet, paste and meat. I also decided to try out a different make and pattern of hook, as one I use (PR28) has been discontinued.

Before the draw I saw team mate Dave Wride and we had a chat about the prospects, once I'd drawn, he was trying to convince me that I had a flyer, peg 85, and in all honesty, I didn't envy his draw of peg 80. (The second time he's drawn it in quick succession).

Looking at 85 I could see why it was considered a good draw, plenty of water to attack, probably, for a newcomer, too much!!. I planned to fish the waggler ( pellet shallow and all depths to full depth) towards the spit, pole at 8m with paste and meat down the edge, which looked a certainty to get a few carp.

I set up a 2 swan pellet waggler and a 2g Drake loaded peacock to fish towards the spit, then concentrated on the margin rig and paste rig. The wagglers were on my usual 6lb sensor, with a 0.17 hooklength on the full depth rod, and to my cost, a 0.15 to a 18 PR36 on the shallow waggler.

The pole rigs were 0.19 straight through on the paste rig, finished with a 12 Mustad paste hook and 0.19/0.17 with a 14 B960 for the margin meat rig. As I had time I put a shallow rig onto a topkit, but didn't use it.

At the all in I catapulted a few 8mm's towards the spit and follwed them with the full depth waggler, as it settled, it buried and after a spirited tussle a 10lb+ fish was in the net. Three foul hookers that all came off followed, before the line died. In between tackling up, plumbing and getting ready, a blustery wind - that didn't make an appearance until I'd already got float sizes, distances etc sorted - was coming from right to left, causing a rapid surface skim. It was impossible to get the presentation right on the shallow waggler, I'm sure the Viaduct fish are far too educated to take a pellet trotting through the peg at 12" deep!!

The margin was a waste of time, the meat being either nicked off the hook, or one of those 'vermin skimmers' being landed. It stayed that way until the end.

The paste line was slightly more productive, resulting in two fish and five or six lost, only 2 could I be sure were mouth hooked, why they came off I don't know.

My other dabbles on the pellet waggler when the wind dropped, produced another fish and another lost 7, 3 of which were lost under the rod tip and definitely mouth hooked. One snapped the 0.15 hooklength, on its initial run, like it was cotton.... Quite why these fish came off, I don't know, I had been trying B960's, the waggler fish were all lost using these, the paste fish came off of a pattern I've been happy with for a couple of seasons. Perhaps it's more to do with the fish and their size, rather than hooks.

Listening to the bankside chatter, I had been convinced that I was way behind, so decided to sit out on the paste and see if I could develop the line, had I known I was only three fish away from winning, I would have persisited with the waggler, waiting for the very infrequent times that the wind made presentation acceptatble.

My four carp went 42.11 and the skimmers/bream that snaffled paste or margin meat went 7.08, for a lowly 50.03. Match winner Jim Baines had 88.14 of carp from peg 90, casting into the corner (where the wind was blowing).

1) Jim Baines 88.14 peg 90
2) Anton Burns 80.09 peg 99
3) Phil Harding 68.14 peg 96
4) Gary Wall 65.04 peg 102
5) Colin Dyer 57.12 peg 78

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Tonic at Trinity. Tuesday 22nd June 2010

This Tuesday evening open at Trinity Waters was the first that I could get to this year, due to work. It was an opportunity to put last weekends two bad days behind me and get an insight into how its fishing, ready for the two day festival this weekend coming. (As I type, one place left if anyone is interested, contact Kev Perry).

Draw was 5pm, fish 6-9.15, I pulled out peg 26, I really don't mind where I draw on Woodland, except the pegs on the end bank (16, 17, 18, 19). Incredibly, I was ready by 5.45, as everyone else was ready by 5.50 we started 10 minutes early. I had only brought two baits, hard pellet and paste, there isn't time to chop and change baits and lines in a three hour match, at least, not if you want to win it.

I set up one pellet waggler, I use a a pair of Maver Reactorlite No2 rods for this method and find them to be spot on, these are allied with a Daiwa TDR 3012 reel, which is loaded with 6lb Sensor. A 3 swan waggler provided the casting weight and bite indication and the sharp bit was a PR36 size 18 tied to 12" of 0.17 powerline.

A 1g Daiwa TD8 float on 0.17 straight through to a 14 Mustad paste hook was the paste rig for full depth. These were going to be the only rigs set up, but as fish were stirring up the clay in the margins, I set up a small blob on 0.19 to a 12 Mustad paste for the margin and a MW margin float on 0.17, to a PR36 18, that would do to fish hair rigged pellet in the margin or shallow on the pole.

Kev Perry was on end peg 23, having recently framed from this peg myself, I knew he'd probably be the one to beat, although venue expert, Andy Hembrow, would be another challenger on peg 29.

Starting on the pellet waggler, after feeding a line at 11m for paste if the waggler didn't work, was a little slow and the fish didn't seem to be having it properly, I had one fish, then lost three under the rod tip, all mouth hooked. Slightly puzzled as I don't usually lose mouth hooked fish when on this method, I doubled checked the hook and hair but there was nothing amiss with the terminal tackle.

I could see Kev on the end peg had given up on the waggler and was catching fish on paste, so I dropped in over the paste line and took two fish that were 7 or 8lb each, than I was bitted out, the float went under every put in with nothing there on the strike, except for three occasions when 1oz roach came back on the size 14 hook.

A look in the margin gave me another fish on paste, but only twitches on a hard pellet, as the silverfish plagued the baits. So at 8pm it was back on the pellet waggler and a decent spell saw me net a few fish, although the last 20 minutes was quiet, with the exception of a couple of big roach that snaffled the 8mm pellet.

Kev was first to weigh and he managed to put 49.06 on the scales, I thought it would be close and it was as the results below show, although my 54.10 of carp and 4lb of silvers(most of which was a 3lb+ bream taken at 6" on the waggler and a hard pellet)meant my 58.10 was enough to take first place and regain some confidence after the weekends disasters. (I weighed more tonight in 3 hours, than I did in 11 hours Saturday and Sunday, quite why some anglers don't want to fish Trinity is beyond me)

Called in the Bristol Bridge Inn in Highbridge on the way back, that brought back some memories of after match drinking sessions in the days of the big matches in Somerset. I got caught for the round, luckily it was just Kev, Brian and myself, some of our Thyers team mates were just leaving as we got there, they had fished a match on Apex Lake, won by Dave Wride with 14KG, although some weighed in as little as 1KG.

No match tomorrow, I reckon its going to be football, beer and curry..... Next match will be Viaduct on Thursday this week.

1) Chris Fox 58.10 peg 26
2) Kev 'end peg' Perry 49.06 peg 23
3) Andy 'venue expert' Hembrow 46.05 peg 29
4) Brian Slipper 43.09 peg 24
5) Ross Gally 39.14 peg 27
6) Misha Herring 36.05 peg 30

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Drawbag blues at Landsend . 20th June 2010

Today I was once again 'guesting' in Tony Rixon's float only series, this time round Landsend was the venue, I guess along with 99% of the entry, I fancied a draw on Match or Speci lakes. My drawing arm has been one consistent feature of my match fishing career, dating back to the 70's, consistently crap!! Today it excelled it's self, peg 54 on lake 3 (See Tony Rixon's blog for last Sunday!!)

I have fished lake 3 twice before and this is the second time I've drawn 54, in all honesty, had the van not been blocked in, I would have gone pleasure fishing somewhere else.

I tried to think positive thoughts, but as I walked up the lake, all the comments were based around, "you've got the shit end of the lake".

I set up two rigs for out by the island, one at 6" deep and one at half depth (around 2'), a paste rig, a silvers rig (how optimistic was that!!) and a margin rig. The fine details of the rigs remain irrelevent in the light of my dismal day.

There was virtually no signs of fish activity, but I started on 6mm banded pellet out to the island, first put in and the float buried, a 3oz tench was the culprit and he appeared to be billy no-mates, as that was the last action on that line for a while. An occasional carp would swim through the peg and suck the pellets that were just on or above the waterline, but as soon as a pole was put within a metre or so, it would disappear.

I ended the day with 2 carp, one about 4lb and one about 4oz, a crucian, a tench, a rudd a perch and a roach, I couldn't even get a bite on maggot for ariound two hours of the match.

Lets hope this forthcoming week sees a return to more favourable results....

1)Craig Edmunds 101.12 peg 36 (good effort considering how rough he looked before the draw)
2)Neil Mercer 94.00 peg 38
3)Josh Garrett 79.07 peg 26
4)Leon Hubbard 66.04 peg 33
5)Tim Clark 65.01 peg 41
6)Tom Magnol 64.14 peg 6

1) Vince Brown 31.02 peg 8

Edged out at Acorn 19th June 2010

A 1.30pm draw for a five hour match on the match lake (the little lake) at Acorn, tempted me to venture out on a windy Saturday afternoon. I'd have been better off staying at home, coming down the field and snapping a pole section, all in all not a good afternoon.

Before the draw I looked at the pegging and clocked which pegs I fancied, No2 was high on my list. Myself and Paul Faiers wandered over to Paddock Lake to see what was happening there, when I got back and stuck my hand in the drawbag, what came out..... No2. I think thats the first time I've ever drawn a number I've fancied, then I find out that whilst we were over on Paddock, the pegging had been altered (gawd knows why)so peg 2 was actually permanent peg 4. Peg 1 was in (peg 13 in the match) so I had an angler 7 metres to my right opposite, the only peg in the match that did.

I set up rigs for worm & caster, paste and a margin rig for meat or pellet. I fed a line at 12m with worm and caster and one at 8m with soaked pellet and meat into the RH margin, the LH margin was only about 3m long, so I wasn't confident that I would catch consistently from there.

In the first hour I had a couple of decent skimmers and some perch on worm, but that went quiet, the wind was blustery and cold, I ended up putting on a fleece. The wind also blew the pole out of my v roller, the No4 section was between the box and the leg, so snapped before I could grab it. Great start!!

I had a look down the RH margin and got told that that was the 16m line for peg 13, I could have argued that he shouldn't come more than half way across, but I really couldn't be bothered, as I was pissed off about the pegging.

With 2 hours to go I had 6 or 7lb of silvers and 2 small carp, so I decided to stick to paste until the end, that saw me boost my weight to 40lb of carp and 7lb of silvers for a weight of 47lb. Wasn't going to be enough on the day, as the wind had been blowing down the lake for a week or so, and the fish had followed it.

I'd love to tell you the results, but by the time I got back to the car, everyone except Paul Faiers had buggerd off, in true Clevedon style, in a rush to the pub. I can only assume that meant Paul knew where he'd get a 'lock in' later that night!!

I think Andy Hembrow won, Glen Calvert and Darren 'Noddy' Vowles were up there as well, with weights in the high 60's. I think the lowest weight was 29lb, so all in all, not a bad match, I should have just fished paste for 5 hours.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Fishless at Avalon, Wednesday 9th June 2010

Down to earth with a bump today, I quite fancied the Carps match at Bullock Farm, but couldn't make the 9am draw, so settled for Avon Anglings open at Avalon as I could easily make the noon draw.

I was hopeful of a few fish, as there would be less pressure on the lake than Sunday, with 11 of on the RH bank of the match lake, spread between 24 & 48. I drew peg 30 and wasn't disappointed when I got there, plenty of fish moving and a hint of a breeze blowing into the island. (I was at the LH end of one of the islands) A lesson learnt is not to gloat about the wind direction - it bloody changed as Tony shouted all in !!

I set up two wagglers, one for shallow and one to fish anywhere from 2' to full depth, a lead rod (just in case and to wind up Tony Rixon who was on peg 30). I set up a paste rig, a pellet rig and a margin rig for the pole. The wagglers had 0.15 hooklengths and PR36 size 18's, the lead rod had 0.17 and a 16PR36. Pole rigs were 0.19 straight through to a Mustad paste 12 and the pellet and margin rigs were 0.17 with 0.15 hooklengths to 16 B911's.

Starting on the waggler, I was expecting bites from the off, but all I managed was to play a double figure foul hooker for 20 minutes, before it dived into the platform leg and chub like, transferred the hook to a snag. After 45 minutes of fruitless casting with the waggler, I was four or five fish behind Tony, who was fishing the pole. An exploratory chuck with the lead saw a fish around 6lb in the net, but that was the only proper bite.

Coming in on the pole line, I soon hooked a fish which tore off towards Tony's peg, bottomed the elastic and snapped the 0.15, shortly after to be repeated, although this time the fish went towards peg 29. I can't recall the last time I got smashed up on 0.15 in open water, so twice in 20 minutes or so was pretty puzzling.

By this time I was a long way behind Tony as he caught fish at 19m shallow, on the deck, on the pellet waggler, in fact whatever he tried, it seemed. As I don't have 19m I couldn't try that, so resorted to what I know best and persevered with the waggler, to no avail.

I tried paste and had a bream that hould have been 4lb or so, but was still covered in spawning tubercles and looked pretty thin, I had another carp around 5lb and then a few foulhookers taht all came off.

I went back on the lead, as the foliage on the island had grown and was overhanging the water by 2' or 3' and it was the only way I could get under it, as the fish wouldn't come out!! The growth was at least 2' in front of the reeds, those who could get to their island reeds were at least catching a few, all I was doing was either not getting a bite, or losing them within seconds of hooking them, into what appears to be a mass of roots under the island. Fair play to Vic (Bush) he is going to get out in the boat and cut them back, too late for me, but should help the next who draws it.

So it ended carp 16 - me 2, I left regretting not going to Bullock Farm, but then I read Mike Nicholls blog and saw that Golden arm Kitteridge had drawn peg 17 - has he ever drawn a bad peg??

So a few things learnt, I should have tried shallow into open water, I didn't and the crap Kebab I got from the new kebab house in Whitchurch might have been a one off, I tried again last night and the kebab was superb.

You'll have to get the results from Tony's blog, I was busy remeniscing about the roach fishing in Somerset of yesteryear with Steve Kedge and missed the results, although Kedgie had a cracking net of roach to win the silvers with a couple of ounces shy of 30lb.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Avalon, 6th June 2010

I've mentioned in my blog before about yearning for the old days when matches were 100 pegs +, rare as rocking horse shit now. So rather than drive to a 8, 10 or even 15 pegger, I filled one of the 'guest' spots in Tony Rixon's float only series. Nearly 50 pegs so halfway to memoriesville...

By the time I got home last night from Viaduct and cooked my tea (she who has to honour and obey - and cook tea - was at work) I was knackered, but I still tied up some new hooklengths before dossing on the sofa and watching an American Ventriloquist on one of the comedy channels.

The ritual that is now gaining familiarity, the Abby's cafe breakfast, anglers dominating the cafe, off to various matches, Rod Wotton racing his down after oversleeping and having about 25 mins to get to Cider Farm and Dean, well, just being Dean!!

I wasn't really bothered where I drew, not knowing the lakes, those 'in the know' seemed to think that a corner peg would be top choice, so I obviously pulled out peg 19 on the specimen lake, nowhere near a corner and a lake I've never seen before - although it is very similar in looks to the match lake.

I'd come prepared for carp slaying (perhaps my transformation to commercial angler is nearing completion, although I still hanker after nets of roach on the stick float), but as there is four silver places paid, I had a couple of pints of caster and a ½ a kilo of worm.

I got to the peg and wasn't disappointed to have an island chuck, I set up two wagglers, one to fish 6" - 18" deep and one that would suffice from 2' to full depth. I also set up a three pole rigs, a MW diamond to fish at 13m, pellet meat or worm, a preston green to fish the same distance with caster and another MW diamond that would do for the 6' deep margin.

The weather, the water colour and just the 'feel' of it cried out fish up in the water, so I started on the ½ depth waggler and the first chuck saw me snagged on a length of towrope. OK it was probably 15lb line, that was firmly attached to the island and a clump of roots, which I managed to get halfway back before they came up out of the water, still attached to the line. I was unable to pull it back any further and eventually the hooklength snapped, even thoughI had a straight pull on it, the line whiped around the tip eye and snapped it off - bloody great start!!

Anyone got a spare top section for a 13' Maver Reactorlite Match II ??

So I picked up the 18" deep waggler and had three fish in the first 40 minutes, probably 18lb in the net, next chuck I foul hooked one and it ran the length of my island, spooking fish as it went, I could see the swirls and bow waves as the fish either got out of its way or felt the line.

Not too worried, after it had come off, I went back in and 45 minutes later, I realised the damage that it had done, not another bite. I had fed a line at 13m with micropellet, groundbait, caster and chopped worm, so I dropped over it with a pole rig, a punch of meat on the hook - nothing, not so much as a liner, soft pellet couldn't even get a twitch on the float and likewise worm.

Back on the waggler, it was bloody hard work getting bait to the island and in the swirling and curiously, bi-directional wind, the float. I knew which casts might see a bite and they weren't the majority, even clipped up, with the wind changing speed and direction every two seconds, it was difficult to get tight every cast. I did try upping the pellet size to 11mm, to no avail, just plugging away until the end saw me land 11 fish for 62.04. I thought it might be a decent weight given the bankside chat and it was, an improvement on yesterdays 3rd place, first on the day by 1.03.

That time spent tying hooklengths last night, may well have proven to be the difference!!

1) Chris Fox 62.04 peg 19SL
2) Kev Molten 61.01 peg 24ML
3) Andy lloyd 59.05 peg 13ML
4) Clint Wojtyla 56.08 peg 10SL
5) Fred Roberts 53.03 peg 20ML
6) Tom Magnol 50.13 peg 18SL

There were some moans and groans about the way it fished, but with less than 6lb seperating the top four, it was close.

Whilst he didn't appear in the frame, it was a hot topic of conversation, that the infamous Fabio, hooked and landed a 14lber whilst fishing into a fellow competitors peg, Im sure he must have cast there by accident and then slipped the fish back into the water, rather than into a keepnet.......

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Super League @ Viaduct 5th June 2010

My first team match of the year, the 2nd round of the super league at Viaduct. Trying to preserve my svelte figure, I gave the cafe a miss and went straight to Viaduct from home.

So much for all the preperation yesterday, when I got my kit out I'd forgotten my keepnet bar and had to scrounge some pliers off of Mike Nicholls to get the quick connectors off my keepnets so I could use banksticks.

I was first there, but it didn't take long for team mates Dave Wride and Mark Bromsgrove to turn up, shortly after, team Captain, Lance, turned up with the draw made and gave out the pegs. 110 was to be my peg, didn't mean too much as I haven't fished Viaduct very often(even though I keep promising myself I'll fish it more).

The pressure was on once several of my fellow competitiors made a point of telling me that it had won Thursdays match, with 170lb. I set up (but for Tony Rixon's benefit - didn't use) a lead rod, two waggler rods and four topkits, one with a paste rig on, on for up in the water and two rigs that would do for pellet/meat at full depth in open water and the margin. Having two hours to set up is bliss, even I was ready at the start.

Some of the advice I was given about catching into the bay on my left, past the tree stump seemed good, it looked fishy, but the fish moving about made my decision to start on the pellet waggler an easy one. But after ¾ hour with only 1 fish and hardly any indications on the float to show for it, I decided that as it was a team match, I'd better try and get some section points. I dropped a piece of meat on a hair rig into the area I'd been feeding by the stump, the float settled and shot under and an angry carp ran round the back of the stump and snagged solid - whilst the dumb ass on the other end regretted not having a couple more sections on......

A new rig (the bloody lot was gone) and back in on the meat, in the next 45 mins I had four tench and a couple of carp, before the bites dried up. I had a paste line at about 9m and I'd fed the LH margin at 14.5m and 17m, the paste line produced on small skimmer to a lump of paste bigger than a golf ball and the LH margin nothing apart from two liners. I could see that peg 112 had taken 4 or 5 fish on the waggler whilst I was rotating my lines and with 2½ hours to go (5 hour match), I decided to concentrate on the waggler and keep the meat going into the margin by the stump.

I went from 3 carp to 14 on the waggler in the next hour and 45 mins and from 14 to 19 in the last ¾ hour (wish it had been six hours). I lost three fish on the waggler, two (one very big fish) kited to my left and headed straight for the brambles and snags around the stump, one just came off palying it in.

I though my 19 carp might go 75-80lb with the tench and lone skimmer, watching the section weigh in, it was tight 3 weights in the 70's, Alan Oram with 93lb, but I managed to take maximum points with with my 104lb 12oz. This was also good enough to take third place in the match and those lost fish cost me second place.

I didn't manage to get the full results, but top three

Andy Power 145.12
Gary Etheridge 109.05
Chris Fox 104.12

and I'm pretty sure Alan Oram's 93lb odd was fourth and Steve Kedge had 90lb for a section win and I think fifth place.