PHIL RINGER: Wins World Pairs (on his own!)
8PHIL and Steve Ringer’s 2015 Irish World Pairs victory has to go down in history as one of the most unforgettable – for more reasons the one.
Fishing the Lakeland loughs in Southern Ireland, the brothers were on the hunt for the first-ever World Pairs title and were in touching distance of the leaders with just one match to go. However, a serious car accident on the way to the match on the final day saw Steve admitted to hospital, leaving a bruised and shaken Phil without a fishing partner. Unperturbed, Phil made the difficult decision to fish on and produced a stunning performance that England Feeder Team manager Tommy Pickering, described as “the finest display of feeder fishing I have ever witnessed”.
Phil fished like a demon against all the odds to bag a monumental 28-800 kilos of roach from peg 13 on Maghoo Lake and gift the pair the most unlikely of victories, beating Lee Addy and Paul Keeley into second place.
He said: “One minute I was talking to Steve about how to fish and the next we were in a hedge 40 yards further down the road. The van was ruined, Steve had to go to hospital and even I doubted I could make it, but I was passed fit by the paramedics. Thankfully the lads travelling behind us took my gear to the peg and the match was put back an hour. I wanted to fish so off I went.”
Said Phil: “Phil Bardell offered to step in for my brother but we decided that if we were going to win it, then we preferred it to be from our own performances.”
Fortune didn’t favour Phil at the beginning of the day but it certainly did during the match. He landed 131 roach to over 1lb and a bonus bream, fishing a maggot feeder around 40 yards out, to record the best weight of the festival.
But while Phil was romping to victory, Steve could only wonder what was happening: “I wanted to fish but I wasn’t allowed. All day I felt as though I had let Phil down, but then when I went to see him with 15 minutes left he said it was solid,” he recalled.
The Ringer’s van was written off. Undeterred, Phil decided to fish. Phil’s weight was the best of the festival.