The Angling Trust’s Anglers with Disabilities England Team took part in the 12th Freshwater World Championships on 7th & 8th August 2010 in France.

Joe Roberts squad were hoping to improve on last year’s bronze medal position, but crashed to one of their worse results for many years. In the teams defence the venue proved to be exceptionally peggy as reflected in some of the other teams performances.

The England Team consisted of Alan Chadbone, Stefan Gent, Mark Eves, Mark Russell and Andrew Lakey, and Joe Roberts (Manager). In extremely hot conditions of 36c with clear blue sky, and no wind the England team finished in 8th position on the River Sevre, Niort, near Bordeaux.

All week the team practised catching small fish, consisting of little roach on bloodworm. As the river was full of weed the team adopted the tactic of fishing fish over the top of the weed picking up small roach and skimmers. The team were catching up to 3kg (approximately 140 fish) each session, but unfortunately this method produced only a couple of bonus fish all week. Only Belgium and France were catching similar weights of fish, so England were confident of doing well over the weekend.

On Day one the England team consisted of Mark Eves, Stefan Gent, Alan Chadbone, Andrew Lakey and Mark Russell (Reserve). The team chose the same approach as they did in practice, but it proved to be the wrong choice as a lot of tench were caught in other areas. The draw was not particularly kind as the England team drew four pegs with an exceptional amount of weed making bait presentation very difficult and with no bonus fish they slumped to 9th place.

France won the first day with 9 points. England finished day one on two x 9 points, one x 8 points, and one x 7 points to equal 33 points and 9th position with Germany in equal 9th position.

On day two Mark Russell replaced Andy Lakey in the England team and team Manager, Joe Roberts decided that the first days tactis had to be changed and given a better draw the team expected to improve on the previous days performance.

A heavy groundbait coupled with adding soil to the mix was a much more positive approach for targeting bigger fish, and so it proved. Feeding chopped worm, joker and dead pinkies and fishing worm on the hook proved to be decisive for England and they finished second on day 2 with 14.5 points behind Germany who scored 10 points.

Looking at the team placings after each day it was so obvious that the draw played an important part in this competition. On day one Germany were last and England second to last. On day two Germany finished first and England second with first day leaders France crashing out on some of the pegs that England had the day before.

Englands day two results were; Mark Eves 1 point, Mark Russell and Alan Chadbone 3 points each, and Stefan Gent 7 ½ points.

Joe Roberts, England Manager said “it was a venue that lent itself to a method, but unfortunately it proved to be the wrong method for day one, but the right one for day two. The trouble is if we get the method wrong at the start of a three hour match the team would not be able to turn it around in the time span. The team fished really well in adverse hot conditions, and I am really pleased with them all as they represented their country well during the championship”.

Team Results:
1st Czech Republic
2nd France
3rd Croatia
4th Bosnia & Herzegovina
5th Slovenia
6th Germany
7th Belgium
8th England