Over the past few years there has been a distinct lack of big open matches throughout the winter months, compared to team fishing.
Yet through all the transition that seems to have seen more and more anglers heading for commercial waters the Old Nene at March open matches run by local rod Bob Fitzjohn still attracts anglers from across the country.
This fenland water very rarely fails to produce and Sunday was no exception. Just about every section was won with double figure weights and the winner Richie Reynolds put a fine 24lb 6oz to the scales.
Fishing the popular Nene Parade section Richie took around half his catch on bread punch before switching to a hemp seed line which saw a better stamp of fish come to the net. Huntingdon angler Paul Hendy came in second, with a level 24lb, he caught well on the Nene Parade.
Third place went to Maurice Mobbs on 19lb 11oz followed by Alistair Ogilvie with 18lb 15oz.
This weekend is round four of the East Midland Angling Trust Winter League and I am sure we will see a much better match than the previous three. Watch out for the cold snap, though.
Over the past week were three matches, the first was on Woodpecker Pool which saw Ricky James taking the honours with 43lb from peg 4. On Saturday the same pool was used and with a better turnout venue regular Ricky Young won with a fine 81lb 3oz. He started fishing sweetcorn on a feeder before switching to pellet on the pole. Colin Begbie second on 40lb 6oz, Ken Clarke 38lb 14oz.
In the Sunday open fished on the Kingfisher Pool Brendon Stroulder topped on peg 13 and took carp on the feeder for 27lb 6oz. Ken Clarke second 23lb, Ray Cook 14lb 8oz.
Horseshoe Lake on the Decoy complex had been in good form but a surprise overnight frost saw the Fenland Rods anglers struggling for bites. Top rod with 31lb 12oz was John Garner, he drew peg four and fished close in all day with soft pellet.
Runner-up Kevin Lee 26lb 5oz, Darren Ogden 24lb 9oz, fourth Wendy Bedford, who held off some of the club’s best anglers 21lb 2 ½ oz. This Sunday is the final match of the season on Six Islands at Decoy.
Fenland angler John Smith continued his run with yet another victory, fished on the Elm Pool at Decoy. John drew well on peg 9 and took full advantage fishing red maggot on the pole to record 57lb 11oz. That was much too good for the rest of the field, Wisbech rod Bryan Lakey coming in second on 25lb 6oz, he caught on sweetcorn, followed by Peter Spriggs with 21lb 5oz.
Tydd Gote AC
In the Wednesday match fished at Clough club stalwart David Parlett won with 14lb 6 ½ oz, skimmers and roach taken on the whip with bronze maggot. Mick Gamble second 13lb 5oz, Mick Asker with 9lb 11 ½ oz.
Sunday winner Dave Sippitts put 17lb 12oz to the scales fishing the pole with maggot. Colin Burton 12lb 14oz, Colin Gibbons 9lb 14oz.
In the Tydd Gote/Angling Trust Pike Qualifier held at French Drove winner Derek Mansell took seven pike at 41lb 7oz. Chris Lonsdale had ten fish for 35lb 5oz, Rob Hurst 32lb 9oz.
Top rod in the latest Masters Qualifier fished on the Trevs pool was Steve Jackson, he put a level 70lb to the scales a net of carp taken on the bomb with bread punch fished to the island. Second Steve Gifford with 67lb 8oz, Jon Whitehead 58lb 2oz.
Friday Buttonhole Fishery Open match: out in front with a cracking net of carp to 157lb 10oz was fishery boss Richard Button. Runner-up Mark Cross 132lb 11oz, Matt Aires 106lb 9oz.