I'd booked into this match and last Thursday's last week, but had already cancelled last Thursday, as I've been laid up at home in agony, for a few days, the Dr's seem to think I may have a stomach ulcer - if so I didn't realise how painful it is. Its kept me awake for two nights, but I've got some pills and they seem to be working.
I woke up and felt a bit tender, but decided to go and get some fresh air and hopefully the fishing would take my mind off it and I could always come home if I felt bad.
Still thats enough of my meagre troubles, I'd like to send my best wishes to Tim Ford - nice to see you're in good spirits.
28 booked in, Cary and Lodge lakes being used, divided into three sections. Out of the draw tin came 87, I just can't get away from that area!! I wasn't convinced that it would produce enough to get me any coin, but after all the rain, I'm sure it wouldn't fish brilliantly, the water temp must have dropped, also it was a cold clear night overnight.
I got to my peg and was determined to keep things simple, so set up a straight lead, a peacock waggler to fish at depth, a paste rig, a rig to fish hard pellet and a rig to fish corn - I thought I'd try and catch a few skimmers, Charlie Barnes divulged some of his tactics to me last Sunday.
At the all in I cupped some groudbait and corn in at 10m, 45° to my left and catapulted some 8mm pellet about 30m straight in front. First put in I had two liners on the tip, then nothing for 20 minutes, Dave Roper on 86 had exactly the same, although he stuck it out on the tip whilst I swapped to the pole and the skimmer rig. This was a Maver float (model unknown) with a 14 808 to 0.13 hooklength, it took a while for the first bite, but an hour and 10 minutes in, I landed a flying skimmer which was near the 3lb mark.
A couple more skimmers on this line, but I bumped a couple and then they went quiet, I thought a carp or two may have moved in and dropped the paste rig in, to no avail, not a bite. The wind had got up by now, so back on the lead whilst I made up a new rig to fish the skimmer line, a MW diamond on 0.13, to a 0.11 hooklength and a size 20 B911, this on a topkit with double No6.
I could see Tom Magnol on 94 catching on the lead, I'd kept feeding the line and had another look in, still nothing, so back on the skimmers and a couple more in the net, although bites were hard to come by.
With a couple of hours to go the wind dropped slightly and I could see some blows over my lead line, so in with the lead and two fish in two chuck and some liners had me thinking they'd arrived and settled on the bait. Not to be it went quiet again, but there were signs of fish up in the water now and just before I picked up my waggler rod, Dave Roper had cast his out, he'd noticed the same and he had a fish on his second cast.
All I did on the waggler was foul hook and lose fish, so back to the skimmer line, one more skimmer and then the blows got bigger, it had to be carp, so back in with the paste and three fish in the last ¾ of an hour, just a shame they didn't show up earlier on that line.
I was convinced Dave Roper had me beaten, although I had decent sized fish, definitely peg 85 had us both well beaten. As the scales came round Roy (surname unknown) on 85 weighed 128.13 the next best weight in the section was 57.06, we guessed that Roy would frame, so it seemed that Dave would take the section, unless peg 90 had secretly amassed a bigger weight.
Dave weighed 64.08 of carp and 1 tench for 3.04, giving him, 67.12, my 6 carp went 58.07 and my skimmers went 10.03, my 68.10 taking the section by default, a nice, unexpected £50 pick up.
1) Ray Hayward 161.04 peg 70
2) Roy ??? 128.03 peg 85
3) Chris Davies 111.07 peg 101
4) Tom Magnol 86.02 peg 94
5) Stu Foale 81.00 peg 98
6) ???? 76.15 peg 100
7) Chris Fox 68.10 peg 87
1) Marc ?? 43.02 peg 68
2) Paul Greenwood 21.09 peg 80
3) Lewis Greenwood 18.08 peg 78