Good draw only half the bat­tle!

Angling Times (UK) - - MATCH NEWS -

THE pres­sure was on Stoke-on-Trent AA’s Roger Ab­nett when he ar­rived at fan­cied peg E25 on the Forge Lane sec­tion – but five hours later he was cel­e­brat­ing be­ing Na­tional cham­pion af­ter weigh­ing in 14-870 of bream!

Run­ner-up Si­mon Wain and third-placed Colin Smith had drawn ad­ja­cent pegs to him and shared the bream, fin­ish­ing on 12-540 and 12-210 re­spec­tively.

“The team plan was to catch 1.5kg and take it from there so I be­gan fish­ing next to my keep­net with red mag­got,” said Roger. “I caught nine perch quickly be­fore it died. Af­ter a look down the track at 5m, where I’d fed three balls of ground­bait with­out any joy, I moved across to my squatt line at 11m where again I’d fed ground­bait.”

Bait­ing up with a sin­gle pinkie he dropped in and the float didn’t set­tle. Lift­ing into the bite, No2 elas­tic streamed out and af­ter a nervy bat­tle Roger net­ted a 2kg bream. A few small fish fol­lowed be­fore bream num­ber two was landed – tar­get weight met.

“I then put the squatt rig down and went over on to my 11m chopped worm and caster line fished at an an­gle, and sin­gle red mag­got saw me take an­other bream,” Roger con­tin­ued. “A string of small perch came next so I re-fed with more soft ground­bait and minced worm and caster and had an­other look on my squatt line. An­other bream turned up here with a run of small roach and gud­geon be­fore I went back on the worm line.

“That pro­duced two more bream and set the course of the match – al­ter­nat­ing be­tween the squatt and worm line for a to­tal of 67 fish, in­clud­ing 15 bream. Had I done enough? I watched the scales as the two pegs next to me weighed in around 12kg each and then, on my turn, the scales set­tled at 14-870. That proved to be enough for my sec­tion and the match, so the ru­mours were right – it was a good peg!”

In­di­vid­ual: 1 R Ab­nett, Stoke-on-Trent AA, 14-870; 2 S Wain, Slaith­waite DAA, 12-540; 3 C Smith, Ma­trix Hal­i­fax CRFT, 12-210; 4 C Storey, Ma­trix Hal­i­fax CRFT, 11-780; 5 M Tay­lor, Ma­trix Hal­i­fax CRFT, 11-250; 6 A Turner, Slaith­waite DAA, 8-400.

Win­ner Roger Ab­nett is con­grat­u­lated by Canal & RIver Trust of­fi­cial John El­lis.

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