Sunday, June 24, 2012

Perry St Pond - Spring League 8 - 24th June 2012

The weather was truly awful on Saturday and I was relieved to open the curtains and see it wasn't raining and the wind had dropped. I got out the pond and Les was soon drawing for the knockout and I was up against my nemesis Janders today. I pulled out peg 7 and decided to play my joker as it's been a consistent peg and Janders drew peg 13 which can be quite good. I had Picky on my right on peg 6 which just hasn't been the same since they took the tree out and Mike Collins was on my left. Blaker had peg 10 with Dino on 11 and I couldn't see me beating them and the best I could hope for today was 7 or 8 points.

I set up the usual three rigs, dibbers for shallow and the margin and a Drennan Carp for the 5 metre line. Les blew for the start and I fed meat on my two inside lines before starting up in the water at 11.5 metres. Kevin Baker (standing in for Rocking) opposite on 14 was also starting up in the water. He hooked one quite quickly only for it to come off and then I lost one as well. I then had one and lost another. Kev was hooking quite a few but most were coming off and I think they must have been foulhooked as I lost another and came back with a scale on the hook. Picky landed a good one which he had weighed at 8lb 8oz and I was playing catch up already.

After the first hour the score was 3-2 to the carp and they weren't really having it. Blaker was catching in 10 but other than that, most people were struggling. I was feeding meat by hand at 5 metres and also cupping some in on the margin about 8.5 metres to my right. The second hour was much the same and I landed another two smallish carp but at least I didn't lose any more. Picky had a couple more and I knew they'd be chunky paste fish. Kev was still hooking and losing them and I think I was still a fish or two ahead of him. Les and Bushy were both really struggling on pegs 15 and 16 although Bushy was in the other section. Mark M on peg 4 was getting a few and Dino in peg 11 finally started catching after losing a couple of fish.

After two hours and with four carp in the net, my shallow line slowed and I decided to try the 5 metre line for ten minutes. I was still feeding pellet on the long line and was just thinking about going back out when I had a 3lb carp on meat, a smaller carp followed to put me on 6 and then I missed two bites so had a quick try on my inside line. I had some indications but think they were small fish attacking my 4mm cube of meat. I didn't stay here long and went back out shallow as the fourth hour began. I was fairly happy with my six carp but knew I needed to beat Picky to stand any chance of the section as I was sure Blaker would frame from peg 10. Picky had slowed up but he had that buffer of that 8lb plus fish.

Loads of carp were cruising about but didn't seem interested in feeding, I did manage to 'mug' a fish shallow to put me on seven but was still behind Picky who had four of five good sized carp. Bushy was now catching shallow and Kev was still hooking quite a few and slowly catching me up. Dino and Blaker were also getting fish regularly and Dino went to get a good fish weighed and it was beginning to look like those two would fill the top podium places. Another try on my 5 metre line resulted in no more bites so I tried the margin line again. I was getting bites but just couldn't hit them, a switch to banded pellet was no better either.

I finally hooked a carp on meat on the inside but the hook pulled out (foulhooked perhaps?) and with Kev still getting odd fish I really didn't know whether to stick on the inside or go back out shallow. With an hour and a half left, Bushy was getting some good carp and could be challenging Dino and Blaker. I did get a small carp from the inside to put me on eight but with Kev still getting odd fish shallow I had another go but never had another bite so with 40 minutes left I was back on the inside. I had my ninth carp but Picky had another to put him on six or seven and I was still sure he'd beat me as my fish were all 2-3lb each. Bushy was now on nine as well and he'd had some right lumps.

I was now getting regular bites on the inside and had two more carp to put me on eleven and Picky replied with a foulhooked eel! I was praying for one more and with two minutes left my prayers were answered and I hooked number 12 which I safely landed after the whistle. I heard Dino say he'd had eight carp but he'd had some right lumps and Blaker had ten or eleven on peg 10. Quite a few people on the far bank had chucked their fish back, including Janders, Dave M and Les so the fishing had been pretty patchy. I packed up and took my gear to the car, on my way back I met Janders who paid me a £1 and I'm not sure he'll be coming back for the next match.

The scales started at Oz in peg 1 and he'd done well and weighed 30lb 6oz, he led until we got to Mark Mockridge on peg 4 and he had a level 37lb. Picky weighed 37lb 14oz and took the lead and I knew I didn't have that, my first net went 19lb 10oz and my second net 18lb 6oz to give me a total of 38lb and I'd ounced Picky by 2oz! Our side bet now stands at 6-3 to me but more importantly I should now win the section by default if Blaker framed. Blaker had 48lb and pushed me into second place before Dino had 49lb 12oz and I was down to third and I knew Bushy had beaten me as well. Kev weighed 24lb 6oz and would win that section (as only Dino weighed apart from him!). Bushy had 54lb and had done really well off a mediocre peg, the only other weight was Chilly who had the best weight off 20 so far with 35lb 8oz.

I picked up £30 for my section and scored 16 points for playing my joker and have now moved up into fourth place in the league and it's all very tight with Blaker and Mark M on 79 points followed by Dino on 78, me on 77 and Bushy on 74. Mark remains favourite though as he still has his corner to come and his joker to play. Bushy hasn't played his joker yet and nor has the Hoff who's on 70 points. The results of the knockout are below (points scores in brackets)

Mark Hollister (5) beat Butch Baker (3)
Jamie Rich (8) beat Janders (1)
Steve Bush (10) beat Andy Winters (8)
Steve Bishop (6) beat Mike Thomas (5)

A patchy weighboard this week

1 - Steve Bush (Chard) - 54lb
2 - Graham Pepper (Taunton) - 49lb 12oz
3 - Paul Blake (Chard) - 48lb

A - Mark Mockridge (Chard) - 37lb
B - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 38lb
C - Kevin Baker (Chard) - 24lb 6oz
D - Andy Winters (Chard) - 35lb 8oz

So a pretty good result today (unlike the footy where we just lost on penalties yet again!) and I'm in the semi finals of the knockout next match but it'll be tough as Hoff and Bish still have corners to come. Next week I'm at Summerhayes so come back to see how I get on fishing for silvers and if Brendon can win his pound back!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Perry St Pond - Spring League 7 - 17th June 2012

Yesterday me and Andy went to Seaton after the mullet again but it was a horrible day, wet and very windy and the river was a horrible chocolate colour, needless to say we never had a sniff of a fish and the best part of the day was the sausage and bacon sarnie in the morning. After that disaster I was hoping for better things today. After reaching the draw and paying my pools, Les drew for the first round proper of the singles knockout, I was up against Blaker and didn't fancy my chances much, especially after he pulled out peg 7 where he won a few weeks back. I opened my peg and the number one was staring back at me!, it's a corner but not the one I wanted. Everybody wanted peg 10 and Les drew that and played his joker, he asked if anybody else was going to play theirs and Blaker and Mike Collins (in peg 11) both did. I decided not to and was hoping I wouldn't regret it at the end of the match.

I had to feel sorry for Janders who drew peg 20 again, to draw it once is unlucky, to get it twice is really tough. My peg looked okay with some lilies about 11.5 metres to my right towards the corner but I hoped to avoid them and catch out in front of me with my usual shallow approach. There didn't seem to be many carp milling about which was a little worrying. I had Exeter Mike on peg 2, then Bish, Picky and Mark M, a tough section to win but peg one has been quite consistent and I hoped I could get decent points today. I set up the usual three rigs, a dibber for shallow with a hair rigged band, another dibber for the inside swim and a 0.4 gram Drennan Carp for fishing on the bottom towards the lilies. Bait was just pellets and meat.

Janders was putting his faith in Spam today as Blaker had recommended it so I will be referring to him as the 'Spam Man' from now on! The whistle blew for the start and I fed meat on the inside and at 11.5 metres before starting shallow out in front. The Spam Man got off to a flying start landing two fish quite quickly and Rocking and Dave A also both got early fish. I had a foulhooked carp to get me off the mark but then lost one when the hook just pulled out and that was the only action of the first hour. After those early fish it had all gone quiet and nobody at our end was catching. The second hour was good for me and I landed three more carp around the 5lb mark to go ahead of 'Spammy' who hadn't added anymore.

The third hour wasn't as good and I only added one more carp although I wasn't too worried at this stage as Bushy only had one on peg 18 and Exeter Mike had one or two next door to me. I tried my margin line with meat on the hook and had a couple of indications but there didn't seem to be many fish there. When Bushy lost a fish shallow and then added his second, I went back out and had two more carp quite quickly to put me on seven with two and a half hours to go. It was slow though and I decided to feed pellets by the lilies to give me another shallow option. Spammy had a tench and Mike had another fish but I was still ahead of the anglers I could see but I wasn't getting many indications now.

There were obviously fish by the lilies so I dropped the rig in and constantly feed three or four pellets over the top, I missed two bites before hooking a carp that tore through the lilies and snagged me and I had to pull for a break. Whilst I was putting a new hooklength on, Bushy had another and he was slowly but surely catching me up. Back out in front and the fish just weren't there, Spammy had another and Mike had a couple of fish from his inside line. With about an hour to go I hooked and landed carp number eight which turned out to be foolhooked but it gave me a little breathing space from the chasing pack. Bushy got to five fish and so did Spammy and I just couldn't get any more bites and was willing the time to tick away quickly.

Les blew for the all out and Mike was playing a fish and I was surprised when he said it was only his fourth fish as I thought he'd had more that that. I was hoping I'd done enough to win the five peg section but apparently Mark M had seven fish including some lumps so it could be tight. Bish had caught four carp and Picky had five or six so hopefully I'd done enough to beat them (and take a squid off Picky). From what I could see I should get decent points in my ten peg section and was really regretting not playing my joker now (a sort of reverse 'choker' if you like).

I took my kit back to the car and met Les on my return and was amazed when I asked how he'd got on and he said he'd struggled and that I'd win it!!!! I thought he must be winding me up as Hoff had caught well and Mike T had six or seven lumps as well. I was first to weigh and my eight carp went 36lb 12oz, Exeter Mike had just shy of 15lb and Bish weighed 19lb 6oz before Picky had 15lb 10oz and handed over a nugget (5-3 now matey!). Then it was Mark M's turn and I was sure he'd pip me as he'd caught on paste and they tend to be big fish, he weighed 29lb 14oz and I'd won the section at least. The next few pegs struggled before Blaker had 19lb 10oz and as long as he didn't win his ten peg section, I had a chance in the knockout. Les had been telling the truth and weighed 17lb 8oz. Peg 11 didn't weigh and then Mike T did really well in peg 12 with 32lb 2oz and crucially knocked Blaker down to second in that section.

When we came to the Hoff I was sure he'd do me but he weighed 32lb 8oz to go into second place and with no more surprises I'd won my second match in the league. Bushy had 26lb from peg 18 and Spammy had 16lb 6oz and handed over another pound and he said he hated peg 20 but at least he wouldn't be on it again this year! I picked up £100 for the win and I'm through to the next round in the knockout (but I was left cursing for not playing my joker and got called a few choice names by Les). In the league I moved up another place into fifth with three matches left, Mark M and Blaker lead with 70 points followed by the Hoff on 65. I need three good results but I reckon I must due a bad one soon.

The full results of the knockout are below (points scores in brackets),

Janders (6) beat Roy Fowler (1)
Jamie Rich (10) beat Paul Blake (8)
Steve Bush (8) beat Alan Dunn (1)
Andy Winters (4) beat Graham Pepper (3)
Mark Hollister (10) beat Mike Hosgood (4)
Butch Baker (5) beat Mike Collins (1)
Steve Bishop (7) beat Les Braunton (7) - on weight
Mike Thomas (9) beat Mark Mockridge (9) - on weight

Weights were a lot lower this match

1 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 36lb 12oz
2 - Mark Hollister (Chard) - 32lb 8oz
3 - Mike Thomas (Chard) - 32lb 2oz

A - Mark Mockridge (Chard) - 29lb 14oz
B - Paul Blake (Chard) - 19lb 10oz
C - Steve Osborne (Chard) - 15lb
D - Steve Bush (Chard) - 26lb

So a really good day (apart from the joker obviously), that was my second win at Perry St this year (and only my fourth win here ever!). Come back next week to see if I draw crap, bugger up my joker and get knocked out of the knockout!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Dillington Pond - Royal Oak Summer League 3 - 10th June 2012

As there was finally an Ilminster match that didn't clash with Perry St, I was at Dillington today. The previous two matches had been won on the whip (both by Heardy for a change!) with 8-10lb so I intended to do the same but also fish a chopped worm line for later in the day. I got to the pub and there were seven of us today including a chap called Mike who was fishing his first match for about 30 years! It's always nice to see new faces and he's also a Chelsea fan which was a bonus.

I quite fancied pegs 17 or 18 but pulled out peg 8 on the far bank so my drawing hand got it wrong for once! For company I had Rob on peg 6 and Steve Parker was on peg 12 but I couldn't really see him. Heardy drew peg 2 and wanted a £1 sidebet which I stupidly agreed to, so I would be a £1 worse off in five and a half hours time! I made myself comfy in the water and set up a 4 metre whip with a Drake crowquill float and also set up the pole at 10 metres with a 0.5 gram Drennan Quad float for the chopped worm. I mixed up some Sensas Roach groundbait and chopped up some worms and casters and was just about ready for the start. For bait I had maggots, casters, hemp and worm (it made a change not to be using pellets!).

Rob blew for the start and I cupped in some worm and caster on the long line before starting on the whip, I flicked out, tossed in a nugget of groundbait and the float sailed away and I was swinging in a chunky rudd. The first hour went pretty well and I had 20 fish (mainly rudd) for about 2lb. From what I could see, most people were catching a few. I was also feeding by the reeds to my left and trying that line periodically but only had a few fish from there. Things slowed up a bit in the second hour but I was getting enough fish to keep me interested, mainly rudd including the odd better one of 8oz or so and I caught my first perch of about 6oz.

The third hour was similar apart from the fact it started raining (and pretty much didn't stop all day), I fed the chopped worm line again and was by now itching to try it. After three and a half hours I was up to 50 fish for about 5lb and decided to try my chopped worm line for the first time. Just as I shipped out with half a dendra on, I heard Martin shout across to Richy asking what he'd had, Richy replied he'd had 49 fish and Fieldy on 17 had 54 fish so it was all quite tight at this stage. I was loose feeding casters over the top of my chopped worm quite heavily and didn't have to wait too long for my first bite which turned out to be an eel of 8oz and hopefully a few more would see me pull clear of the whip anglers.

A couple of greedy little perch were next to show before I hooked a decent fish and after a spirited scrap I netted a 12oz perch and things were ticking along nicely. I was getting regular bites and added another perch of 6oz, a nice roach, a rudd and another tiny perch before the bites slowed up. I'd missed a few bites as well but with so many small fish in the pond this was just an occupational hazard. Rob next door netted a decent perch but other than that I hadn't seen Richy or Fieldy use their landing nets much. I cupped in some more chopped worm and came back on the whip line to let it settle for 15 mins.

The whip was now a waste of time and I managed just two small roach on maggot to put me on 60 fish and decided to spend the last 45 minutes on the worm. I had another small perch straight away but the next bite saw a substantial amount of elastic come out and I netted an eel that was getting on for a pound and by my reckoning I now had about 7.5lb in the net and was hoping a good last half an hour might see me net a few more. I had another couple of roach on the worm before missing several good bites so tried double caster instead. A slow bite saw me hit another eel but the bloody hook pulled out on the way in, I don't think it was a big one though. No more bites and I was back on the worm for the last 15 mins. I was just thinking that was my lot when nearly dead on time the float slid away and I missed it and Rob blew for the finish - damn!

I ended with 64 fish which I hoped would go 7.5lb but I wasn't sure that would be any good today. I packed up my sodden gear and took it to the car before going to watch Rob weigh Martin in, he said he'd only had 65 fish but he'd had some quality rudd amongst them and weighed an excellent 9lb 11oz and I knew I didn't have that. Mike had 1lb 15oz before Rob weighed 5lb 13oz which included a couple of decent perch. My fish weighed 8lb 2oz so I was actually quite close to my estimate for once! If I'd have landed that eel and hit a couple more worm bites I'd have been a lot closer to Martins weight, I was in second place with three more anglers to weigh.

Steve had 3lb 3oz but I didn't walk round the other side to watch the last two weigh in. On Rob's return he said Fieldy had 6lb 6oz and Richy had 3lb 14oz so I ended up second and picked up £30 but I did lose a squid to Heardy, not a bad result for my first visit since September last year.

Yep, it's that picture again

Heardy is on a right roll, he won three on the trot at Summerhayes and he's now won all three matches so far at Dillington in this league.

1 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 9lb 11oz
2 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 8lb 2oz
3 - Graham Field (Taunton) - 6lb 6oz

After three matches and dropping the worst result, Heardy is leading with a maximum 30 points followed by Richy on 24 and Fieldy on 18. I've got no hope in this league as I've already missed two matches and will miss several more.

Well my week off has been pretty successful with four matches on three venues and a pick up every time, I bet it all goes tits up next Sunday when I'm back at Perry St.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Summerhayes - Open - 6th June 2012

Me and Andy headed for Summerhayes again and for me it was my third match in four days, I'd really enjoyed the match on Monday and had a lovely net of silvers and was hoping for more of the same today. Most of the usual suspects were there including Bruce Hunt and Heardy who was looking to make it a hat trick of wins today. The forecast was for some heavy showers later but it was dry so far. Andy said he fancied a draw down the straight nearest the porta cabin and I said I wouldn't mind either. Andy got his wish and drew peg 28, I pulled out peg 19 which was down on the end where I'd never fished before. Both were good silvers pegs and we had loads of empty swims around us.

I had Adie Bishop on 17 on my right but nobody between me and Andy on 28 (loads of room). I had my Garbolino with me again but was hoping we wouldn't get any rain as I didn't want it to get wet! I set up the usual two rigs, a 0.4 gram Malman Pencil for the silvers and a dibber for down the edge (but once again I never picked that rig up so won't mention it again). I plumbed up at 10 metres where I intended to fish for the skimmers but I noticed it was a couple of inches deeper down the middle at 8.5 metres. Bait was the usual Bait Tech 4mm expanders and micros plus corn but that ended up getting chucked away at the end per usual.

Just before the start I had a crisis of faith and decided to start down the track at 8.5 metres (would I regret it?). I fed half a pot of micros down the track and some micros and corn down the edge (the first and only time I fed it all day!). After 10 minutes I still hadn't had a bite and was wishing I'd started at 10 metres like I had originally intended. Then I had my first bite and netted a lovely, buttery crucian to get me started. I thought I'd give it an hour but it was slow and I only added a couple of skimmers and two small fish to finish the first hour on 1.5lb of silvers which was a long way off the mark.

Going into hour two I toss potted some micros at 10 metres and had a couple of skimmers from that line plus another crucian and although bites weren't fast and furious I was catching odd fish and ended hour two with about 4lb of silvers which was an improvement on the first hour. Adie was catching carp quite well so that made my mind up not to bother with them. Brendon Ions turned up again to watch and while he was with me I had some more skimmers, plus a couple of carp and both my lines were fizzing like crazy. I had a nice tench as well and at the half way mark I probably had around 7lb of silvers and thought if I could catch 14-15lb I wouldn't be far off as 14lb was second in silvers on Monday.

Then the rain came down and it was torrential with huge droplets, Brendon ran back to his van to shelter and my micros got saturated in seconds! I couldn't even see my float for 15 mins before it eventually eased off slightly. Brendon came back and Andy turned up just as I was netting a foulhooked skimmer. I seem to foulhook a lot and I wonder if it's because they are sat above the feed. Andy reported that he was catching quite well before heading back. I had another carp and while I was playing it the rain came down hard again and by the time I'd netted it and put my coat on I was pretty moist and my micros were in danger of turning to mush!

Brendon left me to it and I was probably on around 9lb of silvers when he left with around three hours of the match to go. Hour four started okay with another skimmer and a small carp before it all went a bit pear shaped. I got a bite every put in but missed nearly every one and when I did hit one, it turned out to be a carp. I eventually hooked a decent skimmer before it leapt out of the water and shed the hook! I kept swapping between my lines and even tried fishing off the feed but it didn't make any difference and with two hours to go I probably had 9-10lb of silvers and any chance of a pick up was slipping away.

I had another tench at the start of hour five and a couple of decent skimmers before I went back to missing bites. By swapping lines after a couple of bites I managed to put odd skimmers (and pesky carp) in the net and with an hour to go I was probably up to 12.5lb and thought a grandstand finish might still see me sneak in. A young lad who fishes the pond regularly stood with me for a bit and I added two more skimmers, a couple more carp and another tench to put me on 14.5lb with 20 mins left. I really wanted one more skimmer to put me on 15lb but I only added a rudd and a tiny blade and missed loads more bites.

I finished with 40 fish which was more than I had Monday but I had 8 or 9 carp in that plus some small roach, rudd and tiny skimmers and thought my 14.5lb estimate wouldn't be too far off the mark today. I packed up and met Andy by the car, he said he'd had a lovely day and thought he might have more than he did in the pairs when he had 25lb of silvers and 15lb of carp! I knew I didn't have that and thought he'd be taking £2 off me. Apparently Heardy had been bagging (no change there then!) and there was a good chance he was going to make it three out of three.

The scales started at peg 34 and the chap called Roger had 20lb 7oz of silvers! but then had 32lb 10oz of carp which gave him a 53lb 1oz total which I hoped would be enough for him to frame if I was to have any chance of sneaking in the silvers. John Hill then had 11lb odd of silvers before it was Andy's turn, he had 18lb 8oz of silvers, including some lovely tench but it wasn't as much as he'd thought. He then added 18lb 5oz of carp for a 36lb 13oz total. I still felt he would beat me on carp and silvers. My carp weighed 14lb 8oz and when I pulled my silvers out I was amazed when Pete called out 20lb 4oz and Andy called me some very nasty names! Still he beat me on overall weight so the side bet was quits.

Adie Bishop then went into overall second place with 47lb 3oz, then peg 10 plonked 23lb 6oz of silvers on the scales and I was now down to third in the silvers! Bruce had 34lb 8oz and had run out of rigs after being seen off by loads of carp in peg 7. Andy was still hanging on in third place and I was still in second place in the silvers if Roger framed and there was just Heardy left to weigh. When we reached his peg, he had three nets in, so it looked like he would be doing the hat trick! After all his nets were totted up, his final weight was called out at 84lb 4oz which pushed Andy down to fourth and one place out of the money. With Roger framing in second place, I hung on to second in the silvers and picked up a tenner which was better than a kick up the bum!

Really good frame weights and the silvers weights weren't bad either!

1 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 84lb 4oz
2 - Roger K (Summerhayes) - 53lb 1oz
3 - Adie Bishop (Summerhayes) - 47lb 3oz

1 - Gary B (Summerhayes) - 23lb 6oz
2 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 20lb 4oz

So a really enjoyable day again (apart from the rain) but once again I suffered from missed bites and it's cost me today. Andy was close to a pick up again and it can only be a matter of time before he does. I do love this venue (especially Longs) and as the weather warms up I can see the silvers weights getting even better.

Well that's three pick ups out of three so far which just leaves Dillington on Sunday, can I finish my week off with a flourish? Come back on Sunday evening to find out.

Monday, June 04, 2012

Summerhayes - Open - 4th June 2012

I'd booked into Summerhayes for today and Andy was coming along too as he'd enjoyed himself the last time he fished it. I was up early (for a change) and picked Andy up half an hour before the agreed time and we set off. We made good time and the match was on Longs today and Pete said it had been fishing well for silvers which suited me just fine. I sorted Andy out with some micros and expanders and after a quick coffee it was time to draw. I was convinced I'd draw 39 as it's a peg I draw a lot and never seem to do very well off but actually pulled out peg 7 and Andy drew peg 14.

I got to my peg which is in a very carpy looking corner with reeds everywhere but hopefully I wouldn't have to venture anywhere near them. Mark Hanham was two pegs along on my left and Adie Bishop was the next peg on my right, on peg 4. I set up a Malman 0.4 gram float for fishing at 10 metres straight out and also plumbed up at the same distance out towards the empty peg to give me a second swim. I also set up a dibber for the inside line but I won't mention that again as I never picked that rig up all day! Bait for today was soaked micros, Bait Tech 4mm expanders and corn. Just before the start Adie walked up and had a look at my Malman pencil float and let me have some of the ones he makes to try out, cheers mate, they look the business and I'm looking forward to setting them up.

Pete blew for the start and I cupped in half a pot of micros on both my 10 metre lines before cupping in micros and corn on the inside line to my left. I missed a bite first chuck (nothing new there then!) but then had a 10oz tench on my second attempt to get me off the mark. I had a couple of decent skimmers along with a few smaller samples and thought if I could do 3lb an hour, I would stand a chance of picking up in the silvers today. Mark and Heardy next to him were both catching carp regularly and Adie was getting a few too. I foulhooked and landed a good skimmer just as the first hour was up to put me bang on my 3lb target. I did lose a couple of flying skimmers that shed the hook which would have put me closer to 5lb.

The second hour was similar and I had more skimmers along with a couple of lovely crucians to put my running total at 5.5lb and another lost 'flier' stopped me reaching my target for hour two. Then I actually had my licence checked by an EA bailiff which doesn't happen very often but I guess it must be double time on a Bank Holiday! Then during the third hour, my bites just dried up and I added one more skimmer to put me on about 6lb plus a couple of small nuisance carp and I also lost one. Andy wandered up and he was struggling a bit too, I did try my other 10 metre line but never had a bite on it. I also thought about trying my inside line but Mark and Heardy were both so far ahead on carp, I couldn't really see the point and still felt my best chance today was with silvers. Bruce Hunt had drawn a good silvers area and would be going all out for them but if I could keep catching odd fish I might be able to sneak second.

Hour four was a nightmare and I only added a couple of tiny blades although I missed a few bites and bumped a couple of fish. The dreaded white fluff was also being a pain and my original target or 3lb an hour was long gone and I felt I'd now struggle to do double figures unless my bites increased dramatically. The other 10 metre line was a non starter so it was just a case of toss potting in micros and waiting for bites. I managed another skimmer and then had a decent tench to put me on about 7.5lb and things were looking up. I had a couple of flying skimmers which actually stayed on the hook and with an hour to go I was on about 10lb.

In the last hour I had another tench and a couple more skimmers and landed a good one of 1.5lb right on the whistle to put me on about 12.5lb although I hoped I had a little more. I packed up and was pretty sure Heardy had won (he won yesterday too) as he'd caught steadily all day, Mark had done okay but had lost quite a few. I met Andy by the car and he said after he went back earlier all he could catch on his skimmer line was carp. We'd had a £1 side bet on overall weight and silvers and I reckoned Andy had done me on weight but I had him on silvers.

As we watched the weigh in, there was an 8lb of silvers on peg 39 before Roy had 9lb 15oz to go into the silvers lead, then John Dursley topped that with 12lb 7oz and I thought I might just have that. Bruce had 14lb 6oz of silvers and I wasn't so sure I had that and I kept thinking those lost 'fliers' were going to cost me although Bruce also had over 20lb of carp so he might frame and there was still a chance I could sneak in. Bill Hopping then went into the overall lead with 46lb 14oz, Andy had 14lb 14oz of carp and 8lb 12oz of skims to give him a 23lb 10oz total. Then Martin had an excellent 59lb 9oz to take over top spot and I couldn't see anybody topping that, Mark Hanham had a level 28lb and then it was my turn. My three small carp went 2lb 14oz and my silvers went 19lb 14oz! which was a little over my estimate to give me a 22lb 12oz total but more importantly the lead in the silvers with just Adie to weigh, he weighed 27lb of carp and I'd won the silvers again.

A close frame yet again

1 - Martin Heard (Summerhayes) - 59lb 9oz
2 - Bill Hopping (Summerhayes) - 46lb 14oz
3 - Bruce Hunt (Summerhayes) - 34lb 9oz
4 - John Dursley (Summerhayes) - 29lb 7oz

1 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 19lb 14oz
2 - Roy Hughes (Summerhayes) - 9lb 15oz

I picked up £24 for the silvers win to keep my winnings ticking over and had a really enjoyable day. I had a good first two and last two hours but luckily the dodgy two in the middle didn't cost me. On the right day I think a really big net of silvers is possible. Andy finished just shy of a silvers pick up and not far off a frame place. We're coming back again on Wednesday so come back to see how we get on.

Sunday, June 03, 2012

Perry St Pond - Spring League 6 - 3rd June 2012

I was running late today and turned up at the pond and the draw was well underway, Les told me I'd drawn peg 13 which I was quite pleased about as it's been a consistent peg. Janders was next door on 14 and I had the Hoff on 12 with Bushy in corner peg 11. With a few people away there were quite a few stand ins today including some right 'stars'. Bait Tech's Steve Tucker was fishing the pond for the first time in twenty years and managed to pull out peg 10! and Tackleuk's Scott Russell was on peg 3, next peg to where he won the last time he was here.

Along with my usual £1 side bets with Picky and Janders, Brendon Ions (fishing for Chilly) also wanted a piece of the action, this could be an expensive day! I set up the usual rigs, a dibber for hair rigged pellet shallow, another dibber for the insides and a 5 metre meat rig. Bait was just pellets, pellets, pellets and some meat! I walked round to let Scotty have some bait for tomorrow (it comes to something when he owns a tackle shop and I have to pick up his bait for him!) and by the time I walked back it was nearly time to start.

I fed the 5 metre line and the insides with meat before starting up in the water, Les on peg 7 was into fish nearly straight away as was Tucks in 10 and Butch in 9 and Dino in 8 weren't far behind. From all the splashing, it sounded like Bushy got off to a flying start as well. It took me a little while before I hooked a fish which promptly came off (foulhooked I think), not a great start but I did manage two carp in the first hour and I wasn't too far off the pace (apart from Tucks, Bushy and Scotty who had also been bagging).

I was pinging pellets out and lifting and dropping the rig and I added three more carp in the second hour and was now ahead of the majority at our end. Les had slowed up, Dino and Hoff had a couple and I think Janders was on two fish. Butch was catching quite well shallow and Tucks was still netting fish regularly. If I could stay ahead of Hoff and Bushy framed, I might be able to sneak the section. I was still feeding meat at 5 metres and when I only had one more carp in the third hour I thought it was time to try my other lines. I did miss one bite on meat at 5 metres but it didn't feel like there were a lot of fish there.

With Butch still getting the odd carp shallow and Hoff adding another I didn't want to waste too much time off the long line which I was still feeding with three or four pellets regularly. I did catch carp number seven from my left hand margin but no more bites and nothing from my right hand inside soon saw me back out shallow. Les and Dino were getting odd fish although from the amount of moaning Dino was doing I guessed he was losing a few as well. Butch was now only one fish behind me, he levelled it at 7-7 before I got another shallow to inch ahead again. Hoff was on four and had lost a good paste fish. I got to nine but it was now raining and I wasn't getting as many indications so with an hour and a half left I decided to have another look in the margins.

After half an hour and no more bites I was back out long but Butch had caught me up and was now on nine carp and Les had added a couple more to put him on seven. I just couldn't get bites long now and was sure Butch was going to pip me at the post but with five minutes to go I latched into a decent fish which I netted after the whistle and at about 6lb, I was hoping I'd done enough to beat Butch who'd ended up on nine fish. As I was packing up, Janders walked up and said he'd had three carp so one nugget should be safe and as Brendon only had a single carp I should be two pounds to the good, I wasn't sure about Picky though.

Taking my gear back to the car, it was obvious the other end had fished quite poorly again and some people weren't even weighing. Exeter Mike had 25lb in peg 1, Scotty went into the lead with 49lb 12oz although Kevin Baker ran him fairly close with 40lb 12oz from peg 4. Picky had struggled for 14lb odd from peg 6 but to be fair the fish holding tree was removed in the swim clearing on Friday (4-3 to me now matey!). Les had 34lb and Dino had 28lb 8oz, Bushy was only admitting to 11 carp and reckoned that last fish of mine had beaten him. Butch had 34lb 8oz with his nine carp and as I was admitting to 35lb it could be close.

Tucks weighed 63lb 12oz and looked like he was heading for victory on his first visit for twenty years. Bushy was telling the truth and must have really struggled after getting off to such a blistering start, his 11 carp went 42lb to put him in third place. Hoff had 16lb 10oz and then it was my turn, my first net weighed 22lb 10oz and my second net was called out at 22lb to give me a 44lb 10oz total to put me into third place. This only lasted until the scales reached Mark Mockridge who had the same number of fish but had some right lumps and weighed 50lb 2oz to go into second place, still at least I won the section. The only other decent weight in the remaining pegs was Bish with 26lb 10oz.

I picked up £30 for the section win plus £3 in side bets so not a bad day and my 9 points pushed me up another place in the league which is starting to tighten up, I wish I'd played my joker now! Mark M nows leads with 61 points followed by Bushy on 56 with the Hoff and Dino on 55. I'm on 51 and still sneaking up there although it only takes one bad draw for it all to go pear shaped.

It was also the preliminary round of the individual knockout and the results are below (points scores in brackets), twelve anglers had byes (including me).

Scott Russell (9) beat Steve Osborne (5)
Steve Bush (8) beat Dave Abrams (1)
Paul Blake (4) beat Alan Gage (3)
Butch Baker (7) beat Dave Mockridge (3)

Some good weights again although some areas were hard

1 - Steve Tucker (Bait Tech) - 63lb 12oz
2 - Mark Mockridge (Chard) - 50lb 2oz
3 - Scott Russell (Tackleuk) - 49lb 12oz

A - Kevin Baker (Chard) - 40lb 12oz
B - Butch Baker (Chard) - 34lb 8oz
C - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 44lb 10oz
D - Steve Bishop (Chard) - 26lb 10oz

Well the first of my four matches went okay, more of the same tomorrow please when me and Andy head to Summerhayes. Be sure to check back to see how we get on.