Sunday 1st November saw the rearranged AT TEFF Bank Southern Semi-final held at Elinor Trout Fishery. 26 anglers took part, and they had qualified from the Southern heats held in 2019/20. These anglers were fishing for a place in the Final, which is to be held in May 2021 at Chigborough Trout Fishery.
A strong, South-Westerly wind with squally showers tested the anglers throughout the day, especially those fishing the Dam during the middle part of the match. Practice revealed a good head of fish up the ‘Brookside’ bank with fish in pockets along the Dam. The fish were high in the water, and floating and tip lines along with Fast and Slow Glass Intermediates being the preferred choice for most of the competitors.
The match was fished to full catch-and-release, with controllers marking scorecards. Anglers fished eight forty-minute sessions – four in the morning and four in the afternoon. The winner would be the angler with the most fish points.
Anglers were into fish from the start, with many catching in the first session, with the top end of Brookside Bank being the most productive, along with the Dam. The strong wind made the Dam tricky to fish in the latter half of the morning and first sessions after lunch, however the pegs along Brookside continued to produce, with several trout between 5lb and 10lb making it to the net.
There was a final flurry in the last two sessions as the wind dropped, allowing the competitors a chance to fish their pegs more easily than earlier in the day. This final flurry saw many anglers move up in position, with a tight finish expected at the top, and for the final qualifying places.
118 trout were caught for a rod average of nearly five, with all 26 competitors catching. The winner, with 14 fish for 20 points, was David Neilson. Dave fished the indicator and his ever-reliable ‘Shammy’ to take first spot. Runner-Up was Sam Bailey. Sam fished a Fast Glass line and an Olive Apps, catching most of his fish on the “hang” close in. Sam caught 13 trout for 16 points. Third was Ian Watts who caught 11 fish for 15 points.
The AT TEFF would like to thank Lee Cartmail for running another great competition, the controllers who helped score for the competitors, and Ed Foster and team at Elinor Trout Fishery. Elinor is on top form at the moment and is well worth a trip! Congratulations to all those who qualified and thank you to all those anglers who fished in some atrocious weather conditions.
The qualifiers from the southern semi-final are as follows:
David Neilson 14 fish 20 points
Sam Bailey 13 fish 16 pts
Ian Watts 11 fish 15 pts
Tim Joyce 7 fish 11 pts
Mark Haycock 7 fish 11 pts
Colin Fitzjohn 7 fish 10 pts
Sean Brooks 6 fish 9 pts
Craig Barr 6 fish 8 pts
Leigh Pond 5 fish 8 pts
Simon King 5 fish 8 pts
Anthony Meadows 5 fish 8 pts
Stephen Pattinson 5 fish 7 pts
Ron Wilday 4 fish 7 pts