The final round of the East Midland Winter League turned out to be no different from the previous five encounters on our Fenland waters, writes Ken Wade.
Full of surprises, some fantastic fishing and a result that was just too close to call until the results were read out to the anglers back at the HQ.
Going into the match three teams, possibly four, were looking to finishing first or second, either position would see them into the grand national final and with the venues – Raveley Drain, Factory Bank and the Old Nene at Benwick – all fishing well it was game on right from the start.
On the individual front it was another fine win for the ever-consistent Mark Pollard down on Factory Bank. With the water holding a little colour Mark fished a squatt and pinkie match instead of the usual bread punch approach which saw him top the field with 16lb 7oz.
Sensas Mark One rod John Taylor came in second on the same venue netting 15lb 4oz, then came Anthony Watling on 14lb 2oz and Pete Vasey with 12lb 13oz.
With the individual results done and dusted all eyes switched to the team sheets. They produced an odd shock or two with Matrix Image announced team winners on the day with 26 points, then came Browning Hotrods with 28 points and locals Sensas Mark One taking the all-important third place with 29 points. Fourth went to Stanjay Gold on 33 which meant more counting of section points as they tied on 15 points apiece after 6 rounds.
In the end Sensas Mark One were crowned League winners 2016, one point ahead of Stanjay Gold, who go through to the final with section points of 171 to Browning Hotrods’ 174.
A special mention to Dale Stones. After six tough rounds he was crowned the Stacey cup winner, for top points scored in the series.
Section winners: Old Nene Benwick: A Section Liam Darlar 11lb 8oz; B Section Josh Pace 11lb 11oz; C Section Bob Nudd 8lb 13oz ; D Section Gavin Butler 12lb 3oz; High Lode - Factory Bank; E Section - Pete Vasey 12lb 13oz; F Section - Mark Pollard 16lb 7oz; G Section - Anthony Watling 14lb 02oz; H Section - Alasdair Ogilvie 12lb 6oz; Raveley Drain; J Section - Andy Spencer 3lb 10oz; K Section - Steve Welford 15oz.
Teams on the day: 1st Matrix Image 26; 2nd Browning Hotrods 28; 3rd Sensas Mk1 White 29; 4th Stanjay Gold 33; 5th Sensas Mark One Black 43. Final League Table: 1st Sensas Mk1 White 14 (169 Section points); 2nd Stanjay Gold 15 (171 SP); 3rd Browning Hotrods 15 (174 SP); 4th Matrix Image 16 (181 SP); 5th Sensas Mk1 Black 33 (275 SP); 6th Stanjay Silver 33 (278 SP).
Not that much to report on the local match scene as many of our matchmen were fishing the big winter league on Sunday. That will all change this weekend, though, as Bob Fitzjohn from March runs the ever-popular Old Nene Christmas match which is expected to be a sell-out event.
Over at Townsend Lakes weights were a little down on previous weeks but the Kingfisher Pool still produced some consistent weights with fishery boss Colin Begbie out in front with 23lb 12oz. He caught off peg 30 on the long pole fishing maggot over groundbait.
Runner-up was Dave Bates with 19lb 3oz. He fished long on maggot, then came Alan Owen with 19lb 3oz.