With a hard frost and cold wind greeting the 150 anglers arriving for the Fish ‘O’ Mania qualifier at Tunnel Barn Farm, many did not think the contest would achieve the high weights of the previous weekend’s matches.
However, warming sunshine and sensible pegging meant that the venue fished very well with numerous good weights recorded across many of the venue’s pools.
The race for the qualifying position quickly came down to two anglers though – Jamie Hughes on Top Pool peg 13 and Paul Blinkhorn on Jenny’s Pool peg 21, with both anglers catching shallow despite the cold conditions, Paul on caster and Jamie on pellets.
It was Paul who topped the field though, booking his place in the final with 182lb 9oz to Jamie’s 151lb 8oz, mainly by virtue of the better stamp of fish available to Paul on Jenny’s Pool.
Club Pool also fished well with Matthew Dawes scoring the best weight of that pool with 137lb 1oz for third overall.
1. Paul Blinkhorn 182lb 9oz
2. Jamie Hughes 151lb 8oz
3. Matthew Dawes 137lb 1oz