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 H.S.V. Haaksbergen Match - Lonnekerbrug 02.11.14 

 Match Report 

This was my first match since starting to pole fish again and I was really looking forward to it. The match was a 'Koppelwedstrijd' where both anglers fish on the same peg; the 24 pairs who fished were divided into 2 sections of 12. My fishing partner for today was Roger who was just as keen as me to start fishing.

The Twente Canal match length in Enschede

According to the locals we needed to draw pegs 1-5 or 20-24 and Roger drew peg 9. Not the best place to be - sounds familiar; some things never change. ;-)

Roger drawing peg 9 - not the best draw!

I fed small nuggets of groundbait with pinkie by hand at 4 m, and chopped worm and caster via a pole cup at 9 m. Roger concentrated on fishing Bloodworm and Joker at 11.5 m.

My Drennan Baitwaiter - an essential accessory

The water at 4 m was 4 m deep so the top 4 of my Senses Power Match 675 at 4.55 m was just right. Preston №6 elastic fitted through the top 2 sections of the pole should be just right. I'm using a 1 g Drennan Carbo float on Silstar Match Team 0.12 main line to a 0.10 mm bottom and size 18 Kamasan B520 hook. An olivette 80cm from the hook and 3 dropper-shot complete the rig. I will change to a 0.08 mm bottom and size 20 B520 if the bites are slow. This rig is initially set up so that the hook bait just touches the bottom after it has settled.

Chopping a few worms

At around 9 m (7 sections) the water is the same depth, so I can fish with a top 4 here as well. Float is a Drennan G-Tip 2 but slightly heavier at 1.5 g, 0.12 mm main line and 0.10 mm bottom coupled with a size 16 B520 hook. The olivette is 60 cm from the hook with 2 dropper-shot spaced 20 cm apart. This rig is initially set up at about 2-3 cm over-depth. A small piece of worm or a small red worm on the hook should do the trick. I will also pinch a few of Roger’s Bloodworm for the hook.

Watching the float, not the football match!

For still and slow-moving water, the general rule of 0.1 g per foot (30 cm) of depth for pole rigs to be about right; I think it provides for a more balanced set up. Fishing as light as possible is not always a good idea, especially in Holland, where you are limited to 2 tops sets with hooks attached; swapping rigs can waste valuable fishing time. 

I’ll try and explain my thinking on pole rigs over the next few reports – but please remember these are my personal preferences based on my own experiences. I try to keep my fishing as simple as possible – over-complicating the fishing just makes it harder to repeat. I hope it helps you.

Roger's Roach - we needed many more of these

When the match started at 9:00, I cupped in two balls of chopped worm and caster in dark leam at 9 m, and left it alone. Then on the 4m line, I started to feed small walnut-sized balls of groundbait containing nothing. I started with a single white maggot on the hook. My groundbait is a mix of Van Den Eynde Turbo Black, Secret Black and Supercrack Roach Black, mixed to break up just after hitting the bottom. I add turmeric to my maggots which degreases them, adds a nice orange colour and a little ‘tang’ to the hook bait. Coloured maggots are banned in Holland.

Roger with a nice Roach caught during practice

Five minutes into the match without seeing a bite, I bumped off a good fish; the maggot had folded over the hook. After another 10 minutes, I had a 50 g Roach then nothing. After 30 minutes I swapped to the chopped worm line, while continuing to feed small balls of groundbait close in.

To cut a long story short, it was not a good day for me. I had 2 Perch, 2 Tommy Ruffe and a Roach for about 400 g. Roger had a good Roach, a dozen Tommy Ruffe and a few Gobies to give us a combined weight of 1,050 g.

Big Roach on one Caster on the bottom.

I just don’t think we had many fish in our swim. Roger hooked and lost a large fish which killed his swim off. We beat the guys to our left but the further right you went the better the weights got. The winners on peg 3 had 10 kg – four Bream on the feeder with loads of Roach on the pole. Well done to them. 

I had more luck a week earlier!

I need more match practice before I fish another match. I don’t think I’m fishing fine enough, so I need to practice on scaled-down rigs – from 0.10 mm down to 0.08 mm bottoms, especially as it’s getting colder now. I’m trying to remember how I fished when I stopped 12 years ago, but those particular grey cells are long gone. I’ll get there in the end.

Tight Lines,
Steve