The Angling Trust England Ladies team finished in a disappointing 6th place in the 22nd FIPSed Ladies World Championships fished on a difficult canal in Ronquieres, Belgium between 22nd and 23rd August 2015.
Prior to the competition the squad had practised for six days with the other 16 teams and had caught roach, perch and the odd skimmer using bloodworm and pinky as hook bait.
The fishing was difficult but all of the other teams were struggling too, and there were only a handful of individual weights recorded in excess of 3 kilos in the allotted 4 hours.
England’s full squad were: Dave Brooks (Manager), Joe Roberts (Coach), Dick Clegg, OBE (Delegate), Wendy Locker, Abbi Kendall, Julie Abbott, Sam Sim, Helen Dagnall and Kayleigh Smith.
England’s day one draw did not fill the management with reason to celebrate because two of the team drew areas where all anglers had struggled during practice. Indeed the peg that Sam Sim drew in (and which she could only manage 16th place from on day one) was last in the section on day two.
Balling in 8 litres of groundbait containing 500 ml of joker and 250 ml of dead pinkies and 150 ml of hemp at the start, the team then added a further 8 pole pots over the top.
During the match top-ups containing a mixture of groundbait and double leam were used which included joker, hemp and live pinky.
It was always going to be difficult to beat some of the continental teams who fish with bloodworm and joker in all their matches, but the team had competed all week and were confident that their tactics would work.
It was not to be, however and at the end of day one England could only record 11th place trailing in the wake of France, Poland, Belgium and Holland.
Day One Team Results:
1st France 19 points
2nd Poland 22 points
3rd Belgium 25 points
4th Holland 29 points
11th England 49 points
England’s management team of Dave Brooks and Joe Roberts realised that a change of tactics was needed for day two, and it was decided that the volume of groundbait and live bait introduced at the start should be reduced to 60% of that used on day one.
Also, given that the section draw was much better the team were confident that they could improve results and so it was…
Both Julie Abbott and Helen Dagnall finished in second place in their sections giving England 26 points and taking the team to joint second place which moved them up to 6th overall. It was a great performance after the disappointment of day one.
Kayleigh Smith (a newcomer to the Ladies team) took Sam Sim’s place on day two by recording a great first time appearance finishing in 7th place.
Looking at the final results the performance by France was simply fantastic and they were never going to be beaten, but England can take heart from the second day and look forward to next year in Spain when the type of fishing needed there should suit them better.
Dave Brooks Team Manager stated: “I couldn’t ask any more from the team especially after the first day. All week in practice they performed well only to be out of contention with a couple of really bad draws. Then to come back on the second day was brilliant showing what a professional squad they are.
I am sure that next year we will back at the top justifying all the hard work and dedication that they put in. The whole squad would like to thank everyone for their generosity in helping to raise the funds needed to compete. Without the financial support of the public and the trade donating goods for fundraising we would not be able to compete at World Level.”
Day Two Team Results:
1st France 22 points
2nd joint Holland / England 26 points.
Top 3 Overall Team Results:
1st France 41points
2nd Holland 55 points
3rd Belgium 56 points
6th England 75 points
Top 3 Individual Results:
1st Anja Groot, Holland 2 points 4.770 kilos
2nd Sarina Mertins, Belgium 2 points 3.572 kilos
3rd Valerie Nadan, France 2 points 3.509 kilos
England Ladies Results:
15th Helen Dagnall 9 points 2.966 kilos
16th Julie Abbott 9 points 2.668 kilos
38th Wendy Locker 16 points 2.668 kilos
41st Abbi Kendall 18 points 2.668 kilos
Dick Clegg, OBE, International Events Manager said: “A very special thanks must go to Jeanette Halliday, Jason Kirk, Rob Wright and Adam Dowd. Without their work efforts and bank running it would have been impossible to compete in this year’s World Championship. I know all the team and management would join me in thanking them for their contribution towards the squad’s success.”