36 SA BASS

SA Bass - - Contents - >> Kevin Lof­st­edt*

“SABAA” Cur­rently clubs are busy dy­ing a slow death, and as such com­mu­ni­ca­tions from SABAA (South African Bass An­gling As­so­ci­a­tion) are not seen as of par­tic­u­larly high im­por­tance in the strug­gle for sur­vival – Kevin Lof­st­edt

Cur­rently clubs are busy dy­ing a slow death, and as such com­mu­ni­ca­tions from SABAA (South African Bass An­gling As­so­ci­a­tion) are not seen as of par­tic­u­larly high im­por­tance in the strug­gle for sur­vival. SABAA SHOULD KNOW THIS. For this rea­son com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween some clubs and their mem­bers leaves a lot to be de­sired, and should be con­sid­ered by SABAA when they need to com­mu­ni­cate a mes­sage to all paid up mem­bers.

Now I know this has the po­ten­tial to, and has al­ready in some in­stances, become a re­ally con­tentious is­sue. For this rea­son, it must be stated that the views ex­pressed in this ar­ti­cle are mine, and in no way do they nec­es­sar­ily re­flect the views of the Editor or the staff of SA Bass mag­a­zine.

If you read the com­mu­ni­ca­tion from SABAA (pic­tured), it seems in­nocu­ous enough. How­ever, if you have a close look at the choice of word­ing, it clearly seems to be an IN­STRUC­TION rather than a po­lite re­quest to us to re­frain from or­gan­is­ing any events of the Vaal River over “the pe­riod con­cerned”. Also IN­STRUCTS reg­u­lar, non­di­vi­sional fish­er­men to “stay away”. Is this a case of the “tail wag­ging the dog?” Fail­ing to ad­here to SABAA’s de­mands cre­ates the im­pres­sion that the ma­jor­ity of an­glers, (non­di­vi­sional / recre­ational fish­er­men) don’t care what hap­pens at na­tional level, and are un­sym­pa­thetic to the SA BASS Team. This is NOT TRUE!

Be­fore I go into the prob­lems that I per­son­ally have with this, I wish to place on record my full sup­port to the South African Bass An­gling Team, and any com­ments are not di­rected at them, their man­agers, coaches and or re­serves.

I paid my dues to SABAA last year, and as far as I can tell, they have all my, and ev­ery af­fil­i­ated club mem­ber’s con­tact de­tails on their sys­tem. With this in mind, I be­lieve it may well have been ap­pro­pri­ate for SABAA, to ei­ther send emails di­rectly to all their pay­ing mem­bers, or to send a re­quest to clubs to ask for con­sid­er­a­tion in re­gard to the Vaal River and the World Champs. Next, we then see that the SA Team may con­tinue to fish the River un­til the 17th Septem­ber. The logic of this es­capes me, and I’ll tell you why: This time of the year: pre-spawn, spawn, post spawn, the river is evolv­ing and pat­terns are chang­ing all the time, so in my (maybe not so in­tel­li­gent opin­ion) any­thing learnt dur­ing this pe­riod could be negated by three or four days of heavy rain. There­fore, any in­for­ma­tion gained about con­di­tions even two weeks be­fore the event, could be, but most prob­a­bly will be null and void by the time the event takes place. Truth be told, this is how it should be. I know our SA Team has the tal­ent and the ded­i­ca­tion to win this thing un­der any con­di­tions, and I do not be­lieve we need, what I, and oth­ers, might con­sider an un­fair ad­van­tage. We have home wa­ter ad­van­tage, and that is enough for our guys to do us proud.

The sit­u­a­tion re­gard­ing the way thing are go­ing in the fed­er­a­tion at the mo­ment leaves a lot to be de­sired. The In­ter­provin­cial Team “se­lec­tion” is based on one cri­te­ria. “Can you fish at Clan­william for a week?” – Yes, good, you’re in the team. Come on guys, this makes a mock­ery of what this event is sup­posed to rep­re­sent. An­glers should be fight­ing tooth and nail to go and rep­re­sent their par­tic­u­lar prov­ince. Why is this hap­pen­ing? Well, seems to me that host­ing such events has become more im­por­tant than what they are sup­posed to rep­re­sent. The ques­tion needs ask­ing: how many in­ter­provin­cial an­glers go on to se­ri­ously com­pete for Na­tional Colours? How many are even com­pet­ing at na­tional level? Seems to me that the sys­tem should be as fol­lows: 1) Fish for your club. Earn the right to get an in­vi­ta­tion to

com­pete in your provin­cial team. 2) Earn your right to com­pete at na­tional level by prov­ing

your­self at provin­cial level. 3) Earn your right to com­pete at na­tional se­lec­tion events.

In clos­ing, I would like to take this op­por­tu­nity to wish our guys well, and hope they make us as well as the coun­try proud. Words of wis­dom “A long habit of not think­ing a thing wrong gives it a su­per­fi­cial ap­pear­ance of be­ing right.” - Thomas Payne.

*Kevin Lof­st­edt is a reg­u­lar writer and a well known vet­eran bass an­gler with three times South­ern Gaut­eng Colours since 1985. He is also the main founder of Clear­wa­ter Bass­mas­ters Bass Chap­ter (1994). He can be reached at kevin@sabass.com “The of­fi­cial cut-off date to be on the wa­ter for all par­tic­i­pants is sun­set on 17 Septem­ber 2017, as per the Fip­sED rules. All Provin­cial Pres­i­dents en­dorsed that they will not or­gan­ise or ar­range club events, nor will any SABAA mem­bers that are not part of the Protea World Champs Team fish the Vaal River from 1 Au­gust 2017, this was to en­sure that SABAA can host the best World Cham­pi­onship pos­si­ble.”

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