With the river running close to 3ft up with and a slight tinge of colour most anglers were anticipating bumper weights for the Fox Match Wye Festival.
Conditions looked perfect on the day however as the colour dropped out many anglers struggled to achieve the bumper weights anticipated prior to the draw.
1st day honours went to Steve Hodson, (RSPS), with an excellent 37lbs 10oz of chub from peg 99 on the Tennis Courts. Although the river had fished below par there were plenty of 20lb + weights throughout.
2nd day honours went to Dave Harrell, (Match Fishing), with a superb 57lb 11oz of barbel and chub from peg 11, which added to his 2 points accumulated on day 1 put him in pole position on 3 points making him odds on favourite to win the festival for the second time.
Elsewhere on the festival front most of the day one section winners had struggled and Dave Brittain’s 31lb 8oz, which was second on the day tied him with 5 other anglers on 5 points for second place.
Going into the last day the river had risen to 3.5ft overnight and it was anticipated that it would rise another 2 ft or so during the course of the match.
At the draw Dave Harrell became firm favourite to win the festival after drawing peg 57, however just behind him Dave Brittain drew peg 11 which was the peg Dave Harrell had won from the day before.
With the river rising over the course of the match early reports were that Dave Brittain was winning his section while Dave Harrell was holding his own in a peg to peg battle with Steve Hodson on peg 58, while Ray Downey was possibly winning the section on peg 65.
James Robbins, (Shakespeare), took individual honours on the day on the last peg on the Tennis Courts with 13 barbel for 38lb 1oz.
Elsewhere in yellow section it was a very tight affair between Steve Hodson and Dave Harrell, following a superb fish for fish battle. At the weigh in one fish proved to be the deciding factor.
Ray Downey took the section with 10lb 10oz and Dave weighed 8lb 6oz to Steve’s 8lb 10 oz, which meant that if Dave Brittain had won his section as anticipated there would be a tie on points, in which event Dave Brittain would take the festival on section wins.
On peg 11 it was confirmed that Dave had won his section with 13 barbel for 36lbs 9oz.
Back at the draw Dave Harrell was one of the first to welcome and congratulate Dave Brittain on his superb win.
1st Dave Brittain, (Shakespeare), 5 points.
2nd Dave Harrell, (Match Fishing), 5 points.
3rd Danny Ashington, (Kamasan Starlets), 7 points
4th Lee Gardiner, (Shakespeare), and Terry Morgan, (Leeds Angling Centre), 9 points.
Hereford and District Angling Association would like to thank Fox Match and Match Fishing for sponsorship and coverage of the event as well as the anglers who made the festival such a superb event.
There will be a full report of the festival in Match Fishing