We had 12 fishing, down from the 14 booked in, but the 'Radford Clan' including Adam Caswell were holidaying in the lovely seaside resort of Sandy Bay, flashy lights and slot machines....hahaha.
I'd arrived in plenty of time for the draw and we all had a good chat and stuff while waiting for the 'late' arrivals of Steve Burgess and Chris Davis (guesting?).
Saturday's match was won from peg 13, both the silvers and carp were favouring that peg and peg 11 by all accounts, the other 'better' areas seemed to be the pegs at the ends of each island.
I fancied 19 or 21 personally, not sure why, but maybe down to the fact it's the area I tend to draw if it's not peg 1.
As the draw was made I plucked my ticket half way down the queue and found the golden peg for the day in my hand. Peg 15. A decent peg with a little form, no peg 16 or 14 in either so the fish had some room to hide from me..........that is what I think they achieved as the day went on!!
|Looking down towards 16, 18 etc Landsend Match Lake|
|Peg 15, Landsend Match Lake.|
I went about setting my kit up in the rain, I even put a brolly up for the 1st time in years.....don't think I will do that again, poxy thing was always in the way.
Anyways I set up a shallow rig on a longish line to fish tight over and for maybe trying to mug the odd cruiser. There were plenty of fish moving along the islands and the open water had patches of bubbles everywhere!!
A rig for meat was put together, to be fished at the 2 o'clock direction at 2+2 distance.
A rig for the margins both sides was also assembled, to use corn or meat over mostly caster and maybe a bit of groundbait. I did set up a rig for silvers at 11m, but this remained unused.
Bait was caster, hemp, 6mm pellets, 8mm meat and some maggots and a little groundbait.
Before the match began Steve came along and asked if I had any 6mm pellets, which being the nice guy I am gave him some, obviously I hoped he didn't catch too many on them!!
The all in was called and I deposited a small helping of corn and pellets at 14m off in the 11 o'clock direction, but I only tried this spot twice without a bite, so no more on that.
Some meat and hemp went in on that line before I went across to the island, by the time I had done this Rich Jones was on his 3rd fish from peg 19..!! Hmmm.
I plugged away and lost a foul hooker after 20 minutes, the fish were there, blatantly winding me up by sucking at the surface and waving their tails in the shallow water.
My 1st fish came after 40 minutes, by which time I think everyone had caught a few, but for me and Mr Burgess it wasn't hectic.
Into hour 2 and Alan Healey had landed a good few but by the sounds of it Chris Davis on peg 11 was doing rather well. I managed another carp from across, an 8lber so not too bad. But I was getting bored to be honest and was contemplating going home. Steve Burgess had landed a couple fish from he line at around 12m in front of him, further down Rich Jones and Chris Gay both were still getting a few fish in spells.
At the halfway stage I had 3 carp in the net for perhaps 12lbs plus a clonking ide of around 3lb, that fish was intent on escaping and several times it come flapping up out of the water in the net!
I came in onto the meat line and had a spell of 3 or 4 carp, not biggies but the 3lb stamp, I did foul hook a few as they seemed to be hanging around off bottom.
I had tried across again but other than 1 or 2 foul hooked fish it was hard work, so I gave that up bar the odd look every now and then.
I decided to put some bait into my left edge and keep an eye on it, but my enthusiasm was waning and when Alan came along I said I was considering going home, but the rain returned so I stayed under my shelter. I was also miles behind everyone else it seemed as even my right hand neighbour was netting the odd fish including 1 or 2 lumpy carp.
Alan was doing well, but Rich Jones on p19 had slowed considerably.
By now, we were into the last 90 minutes and my edge to my left had seen a few fish show, including a friggin' big ghostie of maybe 12lb+. So I went and dropped a rig in, the float sailed away and promptly took my rig and disposed of it in a snag......bollocks!! The next fish was duly netted and I had another couple squeakers and lost 2 more during the following hour.
With around 45 minutes left I fed some bait to my right edge and went on the meat line, this gave me a run of fish to 8lb and a couple lost foul hookers, I think most guys were suffering with the foul hooked fish as the carp were certainly active. The silvers were not as I saw hardly any all day.
Into the last 30 minutes and I bagged a fish, my only fish, from the right margin. I put that into my 2nd carp net and that was followed by 4 more from the meat line before the all out.
My clickers showed 40lb in my 1st net and I had 5 carp in my second net, plus 2 roach, 1 ide and a perch in my silvers net.
I guessed I would be last on the day, so I packed my kit away in the rain, always a pain in the arse is that....I do hate having wet gear stored away.
I took my trolley and stuff to load the car and catch up with the scales, nearly everyone reckoned on 60-70lb, except Alan who said he had 50-60lb.......I knew that was absolute trash and I thought he had around 100lb, but I heard Chris Davis had over that.
I found myself with the rabble following the scales, John Bradford had 30lb of silvers and had that pot tied up, all his fish came very late in the day. Chris Szacaks had put 80lb on the board and was winning. It stayed that way for a few minutes before Chris Davis' nets gave him 122lb 8oz.
Around to Alan and his '50lb' went 90lb 6oz, including 10lb of silvers.
My turn next and my second net had 24lb or so in it, my 1st net had 43lb-ish. My silvers were a little over 4lb. My total was 70lb 13oz, so slightly over my 60lb guess (but I only guess my carp).
Steve Burgess was closer with his 60lb estimate, 59lb 12oz was his weight, so at least a quid was going my way, in fact it was only a quid as obviously I wasn't gonna finish in the top 3.
Rich Jones (p19) and Chris Gay (p21) had 75lb 10oz and 74lb 10oz respectively, peg 24 dnw'd.
So I was proved right that I was at the wrong end of the board, but it was a really close contest, which is brilliant, something most commented on being good. Chris Gay reckoned a pellet feeder approach would have 'emptied it'........haha.
1. Chris Davis (guest) (11) .... 122-8
2. Alan Healey* (13) ......... 90-6
3. Chris Szakacs (9) ........ 80-14...
4. Lee Waller (7) .............. 77-2
5. Rich Jones (19) ........... 75-10
6. Chris Gay (21) ............ 74-10
7. Pete Uzzell (1) ........... 72-12
8. Lee Williams (15) ....... 70-13
9. Steve Burgess (17) .... 59-12
10. Lionel Legge (3) ...... 59-8
11. John Bradford (5) ..... 30-4
and 1 dnw
1. John Bradford ..... 30-4
2. Alan Healey ........ 10-8
3. Chris Szakacs .... 8-8
Not my most enjoyable of weekends, but I did learn 1 or 2 things, I am slowly coming to terms with venues and pegs and I will no doubt be better for times ahead. It's always good to learn.
Next up for me is a memorial match over at Apex. Will make a nice change as I haven't fished it for a couple or so years.
Until then, take care.