As my team, Chard Remains, is currently propping up the league our only hope of silverware this year is the knockout cup which starts with this match and runs over the remaining fixtures on Stathe drain. I did the draw for the team and managed to get an end peg for Steve Bush who was on B8, my peg D6 was also an end peg sort of as the section is split by a small bridge.
I got to my peg and it looked good with reeds on the far bank and some weed beds at around 11 metres. I set up a Drennan Squatt float for fishing at 5 metres with 0.08 mm bottom and size 18 B511 hook and a Drennan Carp float for my chopped worm rig by the weed. This had 0.12 mm bottom and size 18 B611. For company I had Scott Russell from team Focus next to me on D7 and on the other side of the bridge was Steve Lovell, next to him was Jack Warner from the Nomads who were our knockout opponents on the day.
On the whistle I put a cup full of choppie and casters at 11.5 metres and started feeding hemp and caster at 5 metres. Scott did likewise and we both started off over our chopped worm lines although he was actually fishing tighter across than me. I was first off the mark with a perch of 4oz, Scotty fought back with a 3lb tench! I then had a skimmer of 6oz followed by a small tench of around 12oz. He had another tench, this one around a pound and a half and I was already way behind. I did add another three of four skimmers before both our far lines died after an hour and a half.
I was quite looking forward to fishing my hemp line so I fed some more choppie across and came in to 5 metres with my lighter rig with caster on the hook. Nothing on caster so a switch to red maggot saw me catch a tiny ruffe, I then had a small roach but it wasn’t happening at all. Scotty wasn’t bagging either and from what I could see nobody was doing much. Another try with caster saw me catch another 4oz perch. Some minute rudd and motherless minnows came to maggot along with the odd roach but I was having to wait too long for bites.
After three hours I reckoned I had about 2lb or so, Steve Lovell shouted up that he had less than a pound so I was doing ok but a long way behind Scotty. Another try across with worm and caster didn’t see me add to my tally. A few more roach including one decent one at 5 metres kept the odd fish going in the net. I tried hemp on the hook but had no bites on it. With half an hour to go I decided to stick it out on the longer line hoping for a bonus fish. With ten minutes remaining the float slid away and I was attached to something which was pulling plenty of white hydro out, alas it wasn’t a bream or tench but an eel of 12oz which was welcome all the same. In the last five minutes I had another bite which was a greedy perch but it came off as I was shipping back.
I packed up and went to watch the weigh in, the first couple of pegs had between a kilo and a kilo and a half, my Nomads rival Jack weighed 2 kilo 300 grams and I didn’t think I had that. Steve Lovell had around a kilo and then it was my turn, my fish went 2 kilo 350 grams and with two pegs to go I was winning the section! It didn’t last as Scotty weighed 4 kilo exactly but the last peg weighed 2 kilo so I ended up second in the section and received 8 points.
Walking back to the carpark we stopped to watch E section weigh in, our man in the section was Dave Lawrence who came last with 320 grams. The winner of E section and the match was Baz Morgan with over 9 kilos of bream and skimmers. Well done Baz! That’s his second overall win of the series so far and the way he’s drawing there could be more to come. Back at the results it soon became clear we wouldn’t be winning the knockout cup either. Alan Dunn was last in his section and Nicky Collins and Steve Bush both had 5 points. Our total of 22 meant we were joint last on the day and remain bottom. It’s not all bad news though as there is a wooden spoon! My £25 for second in the section meant it was the first brown envelope in five weeks so hopefully I’ve stopped the rot.
I’m not fishing the remaining two matches in this league as I need to concentrate on the Summer League at Dillington where I’m currently in second place with three matches to go so lets hope I can get some good section results there, wish me luck.