Lurch was 'Back' out of retirement - he has been laid low with a dodgy back and there was a good turnout of 20 of us for the match.
The Draw (it is either won or lost at the draw).
For those fishing the knockout, you get to draw first and in view of Dave not being present at the time of the draw, someone had pulled out peg 23 for him, which I would consider to be at the right end of the lake.
I put my hand in the lucky bag and drew next to him on peg 21. The last time that I fished peg 21 on Skylark, I won the match (a few years ago) with 149lb odd. I was quite happy with my draw for once. Now let us see what today brings.
Macca had drawn at the opposite end of the lake on peg 1, Woofer 2, Frontrow Harrison was on about peg 8 or so, Webster was on about peg 10, Pid was more or less opposite me on peg 12 or so. Mark Wright was on peg 14 (ish), Paul Wilson had drawn one of the better corners in peg 17. Michelle was in the opposite corner peg 18, I had Gary on peg 20, Horsfall on 23, Castaway Wilson was on about peg 27, Lurch (who surprised us all by turning up for once) was on about peg 30, Barry 'Alaaann, do you want a sandwich' Hunter was on about peg 33 and Ian 'Syd' Waddell was on end peg 34.
I was 18lb behind before we even started fishing so had it all to do but at least I could keep an eye on my adversary for the day.
I set up the following:
- a bomb rod (I bought a MAP Parabolix 10ft Bomb Rod 2 weeks ago and like it so far)
- 11ft method feeder rod
- Rig 1 was a jigga rig on .17 Preston Powerline to a .12 hooklength attached to Daiwa White Hydro elastic.
- Rig 2 was a Frenzee FD200 shallow float set to fish about 18" deep on the same lines above. This was also attached to Daiwa White Hydro Elastic.
- Rig 3 was a .4g polystyrene bodie diamond shaped float on .17 Preston Powerline tied direct to a size 14 Colmic B501 hook. This was attached to Preston Blue 15h.
- Rig 4 was a .5g Maver float set to fish on the deck at 14.5m (the idea being to fish the line at full depth until I get liners from fish coming shallow). This rig had .17 mainline with a .13 hooklength and was attached to Preston Green 13h.
I had 1 bag of Sensas Krill groundbait mixed in with half a bag of Sensas Crazybait Gold, venue 6mm (for feeding shallow), 8mm & 11mm pellets for the bomb/method lines and 2 tins of corn.
I was ready before the start of the match, so popped next door to Dave and get the low down on his thoughts for today. I eye-spied a ball of paste and was quick in requesting a bit - to try 'just in case' LOL. NOW, I was ready and good to go.
Here we go!!
Following my endeavours of a couple of weeks ago, I was 18lb behind Dave before we even started fishing so had it all to do but at least I could keep an eye on my adversary for the day.
At the start of the match, I had a look down the margin for about 15 mins and never had a twitch. Unfortunately for me, Dave had snared a carp about 8lb or so in the same amount of time - I was now about 26lb behind. Oh Crap!!
I potted in some groundbait down the margin with a few grains of corn and then decided to have a chuck out on the method. I could see that Webster, Woofer, Castaway and one or two others were catching fish. The confusing thing was that the fish were being caught in the margin, on the bomb or on a short pole line (about 5/6 metres).
After about 20 mins on the method, I had not had a fish or anything. Dave meanwhile had caught another carp and lost one down the margin and was now about 35lb in front of me as one of them was easily double figures. Whilst I had been fishing the method, I had been flicking a few pellets every 30 seconds or so out to the 14.5m pole line.
I decided to go out on the pole to 14.5m with the deep rig, baited with an 8mm hard pellet on a baitband.
First drop in, the float sailed away and there was nothing there. I dropped the rig in again and the same thing happened. It was time to try the shallow rig.
I picked up the jigga rig, baited up with an 8mm hard pellet on a bait band and shipped out to 14.5m. I lowered the rig in and 'worked' it a couple of times before I connected with something solid. The white hydro slowly stretched out of the pole and I was attached to something substantial. After a battle of about 2 minutes, I had my first carp in the net. It was about 9lb or so. Dave had added some skimmers and roach to his weight, I was now probably about 28lb behind and still playing catchup.
When playing fish of this size, I just keep the pole low and ship back slowly without even looking at the pole tip until I get it back to the top 2. then I start to strip the elastic slowly through a side pulla until I get it into the net.
I shipped back out again and some 10 minutes later, I was attached to another good fish. After another couple of minutes or so, another 6lb fish was in the net.
Over the next 1.5 hours I managed to snare another 6 decent carp on the shallow jigga rig. By this time, my adversary had caught another 2 carp
With about 2 hours of the match to go, Lurch Moorhead chirped up and said something. I shouted back 'Blimey, you still here, I thought that you had left before the draw'.
I could see that Woofer was still catching, Macca had taken his shirt off, Webster was still catching one or two, Castaway was still getting the odd fish on the short pole line, Michelle was splashing about in the corner - I do hope that she has
not fallen in again. Wilco in the corner was getting one or two fish by fishing along the boards. I think that at this point there was about 1 fish in it between Horsfall and I.
It was all to play for.
The wind was increasing as the day went on and at times, it was difficult holding the long pole with one hand whilst feeding with the other. I could not get anymore bites shallow or on the deck on the long pole line. I decided to have another couple of chucks on the bomb/method feeder but to no avail.
Dave Horsfall had foul-hooked and lost a couple of fish down the margin. I decided to have a look myself.
I baited up the margin rig with double corn and lowered it down the edge. The float wobbled a bit, dipped then shot under. I struck and a gudgeon about 2 oz flew out of the water. Not quite what I was expecting.
Dave Horsfall had by now hooked and landed another carp.
I baited up the margin rig with double corn and waited for about 15 minutes before the float shot under and this time I was attached to something substantially larger than a gudgeon. After a brief tussle, I had another carp about 7lb in the net.
That was it time. All out. End of the match. Dave had 4 big carp and 18lb and I had 10 carp and a couple of bits. Only the weigh in would tell.
Dave asked what weight had I got. I said 10 carp for about 55lb or so (with my fingers crossed behind my back) and I said to Dave that he had caught 4 decent carp and some bits for about 40lb so maybe just in front.
The Weigh In
Macca was a DNW, Woofer plonked 89lb on the scales. Frontrow had 39lb, Webster had 2 weighs and put 81lb on the scales. Pid had 71lb. Mark Wright had 30 odd lb's. Wilco had 3 weighs for 107lb. Michelle had 14 carp and 2 weighs for 70lb. Gary next to me was a DNW. Now it was my turn. I lifted out my first net and plonked 45lb on the scales. I lifted out my 2nd net and had less in it. I put it on the scales and watched as the needle went round to 34lb 7oz for a total of 79lb 7oz. Now it was Dave's turn. He weighed in his silvers net first (5lb odd) and then his carp net went 32lb for a total of 37lb odd + his 18lb carry over gave him a total weight of 55lb odd. I had done it. I WAS THE CLUB KNOCKOUT CHAMPION. The scales finally arrived at Castaway Wilson who had 3 weighs and put 121lb on the scales to claim first place. Lurch was a DNW - AGAIN!!! and Barry Hunter put 66lb on the scales.
1. Stuart Wilson - 121lb
2. Paul Wilson - 107lb
3. Paul Clough - 89lb
4. Dave Webster - 81lb
5. Mike Herrington - 79lb - 2013 CLUB KNOCKOUT CHAMPION
Thank you for reading. The club still have some more matches to go before the summer league ends and the winter league begins.