The Angling Trust’s Team England Veterans have returned home from the 12th FIPSed World Veterans Championship in a credible fourth place, just missing out on a podium place.

The England Veterans World Championship was held on the Scolmatore Channel, near Pisa, Italy from 14th – 15th June fishing just further down the stretch where the World Disabled Championship was taking place.

England Veterans Team consisted of; Danny Sixsmith, Roger Marlow, Steve Sanders, Billy Hughes, Bob Nudd, Joe Roberts (manager), Dickie Carr (2nd captain) and Mark Downes (delegate).

This particular venue was always going to be a challenge, governed by tides coming in and out and sizzling bank temperatures. Two of the team went out a week early to practice which was important in England’s team plan.

Day one – The information circulated to other teams that San Marino, Italy and Switzerland all knew the water, so they knew the tactics and how to catch the bigger fish made them all strong contenders in this World Championship. With fishing totally different to what England expected it was going to be an out and out big fish match from the start as there just wasn’t enough smaller fish stocked to make a dent, so the method to keep England in contention was to target the big catfish and carp with a few smaller fish.

At the end of the first day San Marino finished on top with 11 penalties, Italy as runner up place with 12 penalties, Switzerland third on 13 penalties and England in fourth with 20 penalties. The two other main competitors that everyone expected to see high up on day one were France and Hungary who ended up finishing down in the results.

Day two – Joe Roberts decided to swop the team changing Billy Hughes for Roger Marlow. Team England fished with six tins of corn, with sticky mag, gravel, worms and joker as the main bait, although the method for the winning team included using 0.25 hookline, size 6 hooks with up to 15 maggots per hook, which was quite alien to Team England. Danny Sixsmith did really well to go on to win his section with 11kg on the day. England fought hard and did fantastic to come back and caught up by 4 points, but this just wasn’t enough for that podium place and they just missed out on bronze to end up in fourth place overall. A fantastic win for San Marino with 20 penalties taking team gold, Italy in second place with 27 penalties and Switzerland with 36 penalties in third place.

Top 4 team results
1st San Marino 20 penalties (74,556 g)
2nd Italy 27 penalties (75,465 g)
3rd Switzerland 36 penalties (53,875 g)
4th England 39 penalties (50,002 g)

Top 4 Individual results
1st Marino Michelotti, San Marino
2nd Riccardo Galigani, Italy
3rd Jacky Belliard, Switzerland
4th Romano Pasquinelli, San Marino

Joe Roberts, England Veterans Manager said “The teams were really strong in their methods and we just couldn’t catch up. Danny Sixsmith put in a great performance on day two to win his section. All the team fished brilliantly in adverse conditions, only beaten by teams with local knowledge and I’m really proud of all the effort they all put it. Some of the tackle the teams were using was absolutely amazing and after seeing that at the start of the Championship we knew we all had to work harder trying to target as many of the bigger fish in order to get a good result. This result now makes England Veterans No 1 in the World after France finished in eighth place overall.”

The Angling Trust and Team England Veterans would like to thank Peter Laughton and Packington Somers Fisheries for all their support who both generously financially supported the team in sponsorship to help them take part in the World Championship.