Back to the fishing, Glenn was doing the honours again as he tries to get his car to 100,000 miles on the clock (only 1000 to go!) and we arrived at the fishery nice and early. A lovely breakfast on site (thank you Karen) and then we took a walk around as Andy Lloyd had made some more changes to the venue and re pegged it. Pegs 10 and 11 have been very good in the last 2 weeks, these are on the new causeway which Andy has made to split the main lake into two. We also looked at the new canal which was being pegged today, although no one was keen to draw here and Glenn was being told off for mentioning he did not want to draw it. Finally we get to the draw and a tin full of balls, in I go and pull out peg 21, happy days, it is in the corner of the original causeway and had won the match the day before. Tony Rixon then asked me to draw for him, I pulled him peg 2 which is another corner peg and he was very happy with that one, my luck must be changing drawing 2 good uns! Oh and Glenn drew peg 3 on the canal and was more than a little "peed off".
Surveying my section I had Glenn Calvert on 23, then Kev Molton, Mike West and finally Ken Rayner, they were well spread out. If I was to keep my league alive a section win would be required, and to be fair I felt I had a good chance with the peg. I set up just 3 rigs, a 4x18 Preston Yellow with 0.14 to 16 B911 for fishing for skimmers at 11m, it would also for 7m where I would feed a bit of corn and micro. A 4x10 rig with 0.16 to 16 PR36 for banded pellet to the end bank, and a 4x12 dibber on a long line for fishing the minimum 1 foot deep with banded pellet. I planned to fish these rigs over the same line at about14m where a little bit of green foliage had survived the Lloyd landscaping! See picture below....
To begin the match I fed 4 balls of method mix gbait with worm,caster, micro and a bit of corn at 11m, some micro and corn at 7m and 6mm pellets to the end bank. Dropping in on my 11m line with a dendra on the hook I didn't have to wait long for a very positive bite, a 2lb skimmer was netted. Dropping in again the swim started to have some mini fizzes so it looked like some skimmers were about. Sadly I couldn't get one, and when I did get a bite I either missed it or had a little roach, so I changed to corn on the hook. I had to wait a while and just as I was about to change back to worm the float buried and I was in, but this time it was a carp. I played it carefully all the way in, it was about 6lb, and as I got it up to the net I pulled and bang the hook length went. Also the bristle snapped so I needed a replacement rig, bugger!
New rig on and away we go, but sadly the 11m line just would not produce again, and neither did the 7m line ever! Just after the hour mark I was forced to take an early look up the end bank, first of all going in with the 4x10 depth rig, it was about 18" about deep but this was quite a way from the edge of the water as the bottom in close was very shallow (less than the minimum 1ft I could fish) and then it was a bit uneven. I had been feeding 6mm pellet here with a catty and I was hoping a few mug carp would be waiting, but 30 mins in here yielded just 1 small tench and no signs. Opposite me on peg 44 Gary O'Shea was struggling too, but he had landed a foul hooked carp which managed to snap his top set into 5 pieces lol!
After about 2 1/2 hours I'd only added a couple of roach, but I then saw a swirl on the end bank, going in with the 4x10 rig I soon had a couple of missed bites and then lost a fouler. On with the swinger rig as they may be up shallow, and after about 10 swings I was in and a 3lb stocky came to the net. Over the next 40 mins I managed another 2 carp, 1 a stocky and 1 getting on for 9lb. Alas the fish backed away, and although I didn't expect it at the time they did so for hours and I could not get a bite.
With 2 hours left I was definitely not winning the section and I needed to get something in the net. I potted some neat worm and caster in at 14m in the open water, potted gbait and maggots in at 13m down my inside left in the hope of some edge dwellers. I toyed with the idea of changing my end bank line to gbait, but as Chris Davis over on peg 11 was well on his way to 200lb on pellet I thought I'd stick to feeding pellets. The new worm and caster line gave me a quick 2lb skimmer and then a lost carp and then little roach (hmmm same result as gbait line). The left margin line never came to life despite me giving it a bloody good go, but I'm sure the carp enjoyed the grub this evening! Thankfully for me my persistent feeding of 6mm pellets got some carp back in the end bank with just over an hour to go, but boy were they cagey. Even with the long line and swinging and sometimes slapping the rig in the fish would back off after a missed bite or a liner. I just kept working and managed to snare 5 carp in the last hour all on 8mm pellet.
Make no mistake, this had been a very tough match for many anglers with a number of good anglers walking the bank including Mr Rixon. When the scales got to me Chris Davis was leading the match with a colossal 317lb! My silvers went 5lb and my carp just over 36lb, so 41lb and that was all I needed to win the section today. Meanwhile over on the canal moany Glenn had managed some late carp on paste to win his section with 46lb and so we both had some dosh today.
As mentioned Chris Davis annihilated the match today, a distant second was Bela Bakos with 81lb, Dick Bull was 3rd with 67lb. Silvers winner was Steve Tucker with 46lb of skimmers on the canal, 2nd was Leon Hubbard with 41lb of skimmers on peg 18 I think.
I don't know if Tony will ask me to draw for him again, as clearly the fish had left his flyer today for peg 11, read his blog for a good account of 2 skimmers eeek! The jam and cream scones after the match were a nice touch and tasted bloody lovely, and the best part of some people's day. It was a shame the fishery fished so hard today, perhaps it is taking the fish a while to adjust to the new causeway? Another blank weekend for me next week, then the following week round 5 of this league at sedges.