So onto the final round........
Our bloodworm and joker for the previous weeks match was ordered through Tim Ford and Ian Pauly but after the match we were not aware if anyone locally was putting in an order for anyone who wanted it as Tim was not fishing the final round. I suggested we try putting an order through ''Taffy'' at the Bolton Angling Centre. The Team left it to me and on the Monday I spoke to ''Taffy'' who gave me a good price including a courier fee, he scrapes his own bloodworm. Order was placed and it duly arrived Friday morning in tip top condition and we will certainly use him again.
One Team member change this week due to Sam being on call. Team as follows:
I was up at 06:00 as I had to sort the team bait out plus unbox and load a Maver order which I picked up from Cadbury Angling for Leigh.
Arriving at the Crown in plenty of time I sat with the Sensas Nomads guys until the rest of the team arrived. Young star Andrew Cranston had pegged out the day before and there were a couple of different sections in compared to the previous week. A guide to the pegging was provided so well done to him.
The two changes were a section at Darlington Wharf and two out towards Claverton. Most agreed about Darlington (B Sect) but as the canal is not fished much out towards Claverton (E & F Sect) there was mixed views.
Leigh and I had a short practice session during the week (3 hours) at Meadow Farm and it was hard, I had around 2lb and Leigh 1lb but we tried a couple of different things and were able to discount an approach we thought would give us a few more fish.
Draw done and I found myself on C4 one peg away from the same as I had last week but the other side of a bridge, Leigh was also in the same section (B) he had and on the other side of the bridge.
Chris was at Darlington, Lewis (D), Steve (E) and Jack (F).
Fishing today was 10:30 - 15:30 due to the long drives and walk out at Claverton.
I got to my peg in plenty of time and it was just at the end of a mooring station. There was one boat moored up towards my peg on my left and not enough room for another so happy days I thought. It was all natural bank to my right. Next to me was Sensas Nomads angler Paul Rigby, above him was Vince Lunn (Mosella Bathampton) and above him a Thatchers Angler who came in from the opposite end and I couldn't really see him. I knew this section had fished rock hard the previous week with a couple of anglers ending up walking the bank!
No real features in the peg but a nice reed bed across. 3 rigs today, 0.4grm pencil float for down the track left and right, 0.9 fluro hook length to a tubertini 18 bulk shotted with two number 10 droppers, 0.4 grm choppy for the bottom of the far shelf left and right again bulk shotted with two droppers to 0.9 fluro and a drennan 22. Another far shelf rig by way of a 0.3 grm float shirt button style to 0.9 fluro and a drennan 20. This latter rig to be used when the canal was still and after drip feeding joker.
I did plumb up the near shelf but it was full of rubbish and very clear so discounted that.
I planned to fish bread down the track to my right, pinkie or worm over choppy and caster down the track to my left, bloodworm over joker left and right bottom of far shelf and leave the bottom of the far shelf alone at 12:00 until later in the match.
When the guy in the boat next to me opened his door just before the match started a cloud of strong smelling wacky baccy came drifting over me which would have been more than enough to fail a drugs test at the end of the match!!
He also told me he would be moving off (away from me later on).
I shouted the ''all in'' and fed two pot of bread and then proceed to put one pot of feed on my other three chosen lines.
Starting off on the bread line with a 6mm punch I had a sail away bite straight away and missed it. next put in a small blade roach was swung in. Over the next 20 minutes I caught around 4 small fish but it wasn't doing it for me. I did give it another 10 minutes but nothing.
Paul above me was clearly struggling as I hadn't seen him catch.
Rather than put on a bloodworm I went across to my left with a fluro pinkie and it was not long before I had a dumpy roach. Sticking with the pinkie I had a few more as well as a 10oz hybrid. The bites stopped on this line so I topped up with a little joker and went on to my far right hand line with double bloodworm. I added a few more roach and a perch before the bites tailed off so topped up again.
At 1.5 hours in I was happy the way things were going.
I tried a piece of bread punch on my lighter far bank rig to my left and the float sailed away and another roach came to hand (dobbing for roach). I did have one more on this method and approach.
A look now and then over the chopped worm and caster line down the track did produce a couple of small perch but it was ages until you got a bite and I felt it wasn't worth the wait.
Nicola Goodhind came walking past and said quite a few were struggling but some were admitting to 2lb ish.
The boat beside me went off nice and gently and did not cause me any problems. I kept nicking the odd fish across left and right until the second boat went through and the bits slowed. It also began to get a lot colder. I potted in a very small amount of joker across directly opposite me for the first time and went over it straight away with a small piece of dendra tail. This was on my light rig and it had just settled when the float sailed away and a dumpy roach was netted.
Vince came walking past me with all his gear on the trolley, he had had enough, only 2 small fish and the Thatchers angler was in a similar position.
The last hour produced the odd small fish, I did try the bread again late but nothing.
I had the board and Paul had the scales but we didn't need to weigh in the anglers above us, Vince had gone early and the Thatchers guy went off without saying anything.
Paul weighed 13oz, my net went 2lb 7oz 8drms.
my catch today, sorry bit blurred for some reason
I was happy with that weight from a hard area. The other side of the bridge did fish better with Nigel Wyatt weighing 3lb 110z to win B Div Section and Martin Barrett with 5lb odd to win A Div Section.
'C' Section A & B Div board
I was happy with my 3 points from 4.
Darren and Martin caught a lot of fish short i believe.
Back at the pub it was soon apparent we had done well again as a team.
Chris and Lewis won their sections and Steve had 7lb plus for joint 3rd on the day overall.
Team sheet as follows.......
Section weights today were (some by default) .........
A Div B Div
A 4lb 11oz 5lb 14oz
B 7lb 9oz 4lb 15oz (Chris)
C 5lb 0oz 8drm 3lb 11oz
D 6lb 4oz 2lb 6oz (Lewis)
E 6lb 5lb 12oz
F 2lb 12oz 7lb 9oz
Top 3 on the day
1st Paul Purchase 13lb 1oz 270 roach and a couple of skimmers on the bread E Sect
2nd Nicky Johns 9lb 13oz
3rd joint Steve Hutchinson and Steve Skelton 7lb 13oz
Teams on the day
A Div B Div
1st Mosella Bathampton A Maver Cadbury Angling
2nd P I Thatchers B M & N Electrical3rd Mosella Bathampton B Sensas Nomads
4th D W Builders Stand and Deliver Promotions
5th P I Thatchers A
Final League positions
A Div B Div
1st P I Thatchers B Maver Cadbury Angling (A Div next year)
2nd Mosella Bathampton A M & N Electrical
3rd Mosella Bathampton B Sensas Nomads
4th P I Thatchers A Stand and Deliver Promotions
5th DW Builders (B Div next year)
Knock out winner
Individual winner on weight
Biggest fish of the series
7lb 6oz bream
Well thats it A Div next year for us, we have a more stable team now so lets hope we do well. In this series of matches we won our Div 5 times and came 2nd on the other.
As a team our next event will be the Gloucester Canal Spring League.
Not sure were my next match is....Tone?