Saturday 11/09/2021 – Bathampton AA – Dave Crookes Memorial Charity Match – Bridge Pool
Because Dave Crookes was a long time good friend I have wanted to fish this match for some time but for various reason couldn’t. Dave and I joined the BAA committee at the same time through the affiliated clubs. Dave representing the RAF and me MST. Dave was a natural angler but didn’t regularly fish matches, when he did he often framed. I would love to win this one in his memory.
Because there were two matches today, ours on Bridge Pool and a 24 hours Carp match on the Main Lake I arrived to a packed car park . I had a walk around the Pool with Dave Gillard. Apparently some heavy rain last week had knocked the colour out, so expectation was for it to fish hard.
Back to the draw and it was a nice touch by the BAA committee to lay on bacon and sausage rolls and hot drinks – all FOC – well done to them. Cant beat the smell of bacon especially cooked out doors. Pools paid – raffle tickets purchased – no more on this one. The draw put me on peg 19, the peg I had last match here and got frustrated because I couldn’t see the float due to the sun shining on silver flotsam. For company I had matey Kev Winstone on peg 18 who would be difficult to beat especially if he listened to my advice!
Any peg on this Pool with cover hold F1’s. I have noticed that BAA have trimmed some of the islands which is OK but please leave the margins overgrown, otherwise we won’t be able to catch the F1’s in any numbers. Won’t catch these fish on a mud bank. As can be seen from the picture above peg 19 had plenty of margin cover and therefore holds plenty of F1’s – the problem is encouraging them out from the reeds to feed.
Two paste rigs – one for out in front and one for both margins just in front the reeds in 31/2 foot of water at top set plus three barrels of margin pole. Also the Ronnie rig in case I couldn’t see the down the margin. Started out in front with the paste over a pot of micro and as expected the same as previous match plenty of nibblers. So quickly abandoned after feeding some DR’s in GB for the Silvers as back up. Went down the RH margin which felt as if it wouldn’t produce. So round to the left with paste over micro and kindered hard 4’s and could just about see the float and had a couple of F1’s before the sun squeezed through the trees and hindered my vision. So thought I would try the Silvers with singe LR over the GB and loose fed LR’s. I fished this for an hour which accounted for 8 lb of Silvers. I felt I had a chance to frame in the Silvers, but wanted to go for the win. So back in the margin but the sun was a pain, so set up the waggler to fish further down to the end bank where visibility was far better. With double LR over loose fed LR’s I had two quick big F1’s before I was pestered by small Perch. Luckily the sun had moved on and I could go back to the margin paste rig. This resulted in spells of catching F1’s catch two and the shoal backed off. Late on I caught two small Carp and two better ones, the largest coming just before the whistle. Kev had caught a very similar amount of fish as me so it was going to be tight.
My silvers weighed 8 lb 2 oz, The four carp 30 lb and the F1’s 24 lb 12 oz for a match winner weight of 62 lb 14 oz beating Kev in to second spot by just 3 lb 2 oz which was the difference between our Silvers weights!
I usually give my trophies to the junior for recycling, however for sentimental reason I will be keeping this one in the office.
The Silvers was won by Paul Barnfield with a low weight of 14 lb 4 oz from peg 14. Paul Caught at 13 metres using his worm hook bait over chopped worm and copious amounts of micro. Well done matey.
Back to the pub with the usual suspects and a nice end to another memorable day mainly thanks to Arron Britnell, James Buckle and the rest of the BAA committee.