SCHOOL­BOY PERCH RECORD SHOCK -

Angling Times (UK) - - TIPS & TACTICS -

1IT’S the stuff of fish­ing fan­tasy – a school­boy fishes a tiny pond and catches a Bri­tish record perch. Fan­tasy then? Not a bit of it, as Ox­ford­shire 11-year-old Dean Rawl­ings stunned the angling world with the cap­ture of a then record 5lb 9oz 8dr stripey from a small day-ticket lake in his home county.

A perfect ex­am­ple of the un­pre­dictabil­ity of angling, Dean took the fish most spec­i­men hunters die for by float­fish­ing a bunch of mag­gots on a lake that no-one would spare a sec­ond glance. The perch grabbed his hook­bait as he reeled in to re­cast.

Not only did the cap­ture get the big-fish world in a bit of a tizz, but it also showed the prom­ise of com­mer­cial-style day-ticket wa­ters for big perch. Today, such lakes are tar­geted for their massive perch but back in 2002, they wouldn’t have been on the hit list of an­glers plan­ning their cam­paign.

“The catch was 90per cent luck and 10 per cent skill, we know that, but nev­er­the­less we’re all very proud of Dean,” said his dad at the time.

Al­though the UK record has since eclipsed his fish, the school­boy’s record perch is still a story that comes up im­me­di­ately when talk­ing about mem­o­rable catches.

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