Dersingham squad make final four

A top team of anglers representing Dersingham Angling Club booked their place in the semi-final of the National Super Cup Knockout Tournament after pulling off a marvellous victory over their Martham Angling Club hosts.

A top team of anglers representing Dersingham Angling Club booked their place in the semi-final of the National Super Cup Knockout Tournament after pulling off a marvellous victory over their Martham Angling Club hosts.

The triumphant West Norfolk squad were Darren Jackson, Adam Playford, Danny Simper, Peter Lambdin, Ray Lee, Steve Hanstead, Mark Grange and James Collinson, who scored a maximum 16 points to crush the Broadland outfit staging the contest on their own Martham Pits fishery.

In addition, the visitors filled the top individual places with Jackson weighing in the top bag of 22lb 6oz, Playford had more than 18lbs, Lee 16lb 10oz and Collinson 16lb 9½oz.

“Thanks to a bit of practice on the venue we got it right on the day,” declared team boss Peter Lambdin.

“The semi-final is at the Tunnel Barn Farm Fishery near Sleaford, where we shall be up against some of the top teams in the country. We know it will be difficult because we made the semi-final four years ago and were hammered.”

Considering they were comparative strangers to the Martham Pits, Dersingham's display was remarkable. They were able to adapt to the variable potential in each of the two pits selected. For instance, Darren Jackson caught his carp on a waggler float rig; Adam Playford tempted his sizeable fish on the feeder and by contrast Mark Grange whipped in some 400 tiny roach and rudd to score his maximum points with 11lb.

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Disappointed Martham team boss Paul Sparks who was top of his list with 10lb 10oz accepted his men had been well beaten by a team of all-rounders.

“The chap I was up against was fishing with a pole well over 20 metres in length and I could not compete against that. This was our first year in the tournament, we have learned how difficult it can be, but we shall be back again competing while a little older but a lost wiser.”

On Monday, the Barford Five Day Festival kicked off with some excellent three figure returns and the top catch fell to Simon Wheeler of Dorking, who netted 108lb 5oz from peg No 5 at Colton.

Among the open events, Colton turned up the catch of the week - 176lb 8oz for Browning Hotrod Tim Nash, while at Mill Farm Dave Bates of Kev's Tackle won with 110lb 12oz.

The heaviest freshwater eel reported from local waters since post war records began was reeled in from Waveney Valley Lakes yesterday morning.

The monster wriggler scaling 10lb 2oz gobbled up a boillie bait intended for a carp cast out by Essex visitor Malcolm Smith, who nearly fell off his box with surprise when the giant scavenger came writhing to the surface after a bottom-hugging scrap that lasted several minutes.

“At first I thought I had hooked a stubborn carp,” declared the shaking captor after weighing the giant eel and returning it alive to the water.

The heaviest eel recorded in J Wilson's specimen fish list for Norfolk and Suffolk that goes back to 1953 came out of Feltwell Pits in 1994 scaling 8lb 8oz.

At Waveney Valley, Andrew Goldsmith, a bailiff there for three years, said he had witnessed eels to over 8lb from the fishery; indeed seven to over 7lb were caught by Reydon angler Dan Taylor only last week.

“This huge specimen caught by the Chigwell visitor was as thick as a man's arm, but like all the others it was caught by accident by a carp angler,” he said.

The British record for the freshwater eel (Anguilla anguilla) stands at 11lb 2oz caught by S Terry from the Kingfisher Lake, Ringwood, Hampshire in 1978.

Is there a specimen to beat that in Waveney Valley? When news of the latest capture gets out it is likely a number of eel enthusiasts will be heading for this Norfolk and Suffolk border water to find out.