Drenan England will return from the world angling championships without a men’s senior medal after the event on Italy’s Ostellato Canal. As so often happens, the Italians totally dominated on home water, scoring a brilliant nine points on day one with three section wins.
Incredibly that was bettered by Holland, led by manager Jan Van Schendel, who had four section wins and a seventh to sit in second on 11 points, with Hungary third, Belgium fourth, and England sitting in fifth on 20 points, 11 off the lead and just five off the Hungarians in the bronze medal position.
The venue fished well with bream, skimmers, and carp showing in good numbers and also plenty of catfish being caught, although CIPS ruled they would not count for this event. England had surprisingly chosen to leave of anchor man Steve Gardener on day one; and their best performer was Stu Conroy with a 17kilo weight that gave him second in section.
Alan Scotthorne scored a section third, Des Shipp was fourth in his section, with Will Raison fifth in his section and Sean Ashby having to make way for Steve Gardener on day two after his section sixth.
Wales were ninth of the 34 competing teams after day one, 29 points off the lead, their best performer being Nige Evans who was fourth in his section.
Of the other home nations Scotland were 17th after the first day, Ireland 27th and the Channel Islands 30th. One the bigger disappointments were European Champions France, who showed that while they are still masterful on small fish, when it comes to big weights of quality fish, they are still lagging behind.
The biggest surprise package was South Africa, who sat 7th after Day One after a section first, second, sixth, 8th and 12th. However, there was much excitement in the Scottish camp going into Day Two after Jamie Masson won the whole match with over 25 kilos from one of the end pegs – and he was in with a real chance of a gold medal.
It came as no surprise to anyone when Italy held on to take the gold on Day Two. They weren’t quite as brilliant, but their 12-point score was still stunning and they finished clear of the field with just 21 points.
Holland could not repeat their day one success and they dropped away, agonisingly missing out on a medal by just a point with Belgium taking the bronze medal with 32 points and the ever-strong Hungarians matching Italy’s performance on Day Two with just 12 points to take silver. England fished well and beat their day one performance by a point, but their 19-point score put them on 29 points which placed them in fifth.
Stu Conroy was England’s best performer finishing tenth overall on 5pts. Alan Scotthorne also scored five points but with a lower weight.
Jamie Masson missed out on a medal for Scotland after leading on day one, with two Italians on the podium. Andrea Fini won the gold for Italy, with Peter Milkovics of Hungary taking silver and Ferruccio Gabba of Italy the bronze.
Wales finished in 12th, with Scotland 15th and including a section win for Ewan Reed on Day Two, Ireland 27th and the Channel Islands 31st of the 36 competing teams.
* England finished out of the medals in the first World Feeder Championships under the guidance of manager Tom Pickering. The event was won in controversial circumstances by Russia. However, there was some success with Steve Ringer winning an individual silver thanks to a section second and first.
England’s juniors bagged a team silver behind (you guessed it) Italy, while the Intermediates also did well, coming home with a bronze medal