Never been so single-minded
OBSESSION like that shown by Phil Smith (pages 28/29) is one trait that I’ve managed to avoid.
My fishing, until I started Tight Lines, was based entirely around match fishing and right up until then, 1995, I travelled far and wide to fish against the best, often in their own backyard.
I enjoyed it and tried my very best to win but it didn’t possess me, like fishing does with some anglers in the ‘specimen’ world.
I enjoyed winning matches, or even framing, on new rivers but never set out a target to win on the Great Ouse, for example, and only fish there until the goal was scored. I can’t say I know a match angler who has had such a goal.
I have never really obsessed about catching a specific fish, although it got close with a tidal Thames barbel – but catching one within an hour of trying helped a bit!
However, Phil Smith now wants to catch a double-figure barbel from 30 rivers... and he’s only got three to go.
I bet when he’s done his 30 he’ll want to do the rest. It’s not something I’d fancy, but good luck to anyone that does.