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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Luton Bedfordshire.
    Posts
    3,796
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default What makes a good match angler???

    I was thinking this yesterday after managing to contact several of my compatriots of the past,most still fishing matches regularly,unlike myself,i came to this conclusion,the guy who could suddenly switch on when he found the right method,or the fish came on in a single minded fashion with total confidence,obviously the ability/knowledge has to be there,anybody have any views on it?

    P.S. I lost my competetive edge around ten years ago and with that the interest to change around all day to catch,so usually fish one method(i.e. float fishing)and stick with it all day,farting around with shotting patterns,hook sizes yes,but not straight lead,feeder,pole,all in one day.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    North Yorkshire.
    Posts
    10,828

    Default Re: What makes a good match angler???

    The ability to regularly catch a greater weight of fish than the rest of the field is the most important thing.

    The one thing that I see that separates the best from the rest (match or not) is their way with bait and loosefeeding.

  3. #3

    Default Re: What makes a good match angler???

    Depends on the context. Commercials have given rise to venue and method experts - anglers who know their pools inside out, or have how to catch method carp or F1's on the pole down to a fine art.

    In the bit of the fishing world I grew up in and prefer, the best match anglers had a lot of flexibility and wide-ranging skills on all kinds of rivers, canals and lakes, and the three main methods.

    I often find that when I go fishing, the first visit to a place or a new swim is so-so, and there's possibly not much to put on HDYGO. By the end of the session, though, I've probably got a better idea what to do, and if I come back soon after I might well catch plenty. By contrast, I've found that a couple of fishing mates who have done well in match fishing are quicker to read their swims, and all the clues you get from bites etc, and to work out how to feed and fish. I'd say the ability to quickly read and adapt to what you've drawn - as opposed to fishing how you expected or wanted to - is a big difference between anglers.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    In God's County: Wiltshire
    Posts
    22,659
    Blog Entries
    6

    Default Re: What makes a good match angler???

    I'd say that to become a really good match angler then a fully focussed dedication is essential; to be good then there are no half measures in my book, and little time for anything else.

    I requires a lot of time (and money) and I'd say that my most successful periods were when I was single and totally dedicated to the one purpose, that being winning.

    I was lucky enough to know a good few top match anglers and fished with the likes of Stevie Gardner, Jan Porter, Dave Vincent and Steve Saunders, all of whom were simply amazing to watch from close quarters.

    Stevie G's seat box was an Aladin's cave of rigs, and many were labelled with individual peg numbers at different venues . . . such was his preparation and attention to detail.

    Without exception when they tackled up typically they would lay their rods in the water so no one could see their shotting patterns, so secrecy is another necessary component if one wants to be successful, and yet Stevie G would always answer any direct question, after the match.

    Scholars have long known that fishing eventually turns men into philosophers.

    Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to buy decent tackle on a philosopher's salary. ~

    Patrick F. McManus






  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Azide the Stour
    Posts
    3,879

    Default Re: What makes a good match angler???

    Dedication isn't always enough; I believe there has to be a lot of natural ability to think like a fish/read water if you want to do really well. One angler local to me - Neil Maidment will know who I mean - spent over a decade convinced that if only he tried hard enough/practised enough/had all the right gear then he would become a good (not top) match angler. He took out bank loans to buy top of range gear, watched top anglers in abundance and yet when it came down to it could barely catch a cold. He almost tried too hard sometimes. He did win one or two low quality club matches but found himself generally rejected by local winter league teams and only finally got into a National team (his ultimate quest) when a team was truly on its uppers, not helped by him being team captain and yet another relegation. He just didn't understand what was happening underwater ie the effect that feeding, bait presentation, conditions had on what he'd catch.

    Anglers at the opposite end of the scale defy the laws of physics, dedicated and single-minded, yes - but able to do things no one else seems to understand. In this elite band of men I include Steve Gardener (referred to as 'God'; I fished in a number of matches that also included Steve and as far as I can tell I never beat him even if I framed), Ivan Marks, John Dean (Nottingham and other Trent anglers could fill a book on how John won matches, like the day just about the entire field was water-licked on a dirty rising Trent at Shelford, yet John stuck it out till the end, getting a 7lb carp late on to win, when scores of anglers had long packed up, with the view that if Deany wasn't catching there was not much point staying), Phil Coles ( I took him fishing for the first time for 20 years in 2015; you'd think he'd never been away, never miscast, missed a bite, lost a fish, outstanding, his mind working all the time trying to figure oput what was happening) and there are others of similar ilk. Ivan had little time for matters outside fishing bar gambling, and the other Likely Lads, none of whom were slouches when it came to fishing, all, to a man, rated Ivan as the best. I did manage to 'scalp' Keith Arthur on Medley, Kim Milsom on Longleat (he misread the conditions) and Jan Porter on the Bristol Avon (he fished for non-existent chub on a roach peg).

    In my prime I had a knack of winning or framing on venues I'd never seen before; a 2nd on Dryad, wins on the Thames at Carrot's Ham, Goring, three wins in a row at Clifton Hampden, framing at Longleat, winning at Clifton Lakes and Makins. I guess I took an open mind to the venues and chopped and changed rather than doing what the locals did which was often copy each other.

    Apart from that water craft you need excellent coordination and eyesight, eyes given out in the queue for the eagles as it states in Kevin Ashurst's (another superstar) book.

  6. #6

    Default Re: What makes a good match angler???

    Something I suppose people who have it take for granted, but those who don't are keenly aware of, is the issue of temperament. That might not be the right word, but I mean whatever it is that enables some, more than others, to fish calmly when it's either going badly or well. The last time I fished a Trent open match shows which side I fall on. It was winter, after Christmas, on a low river 5 or 6 years ago on a stretch below Gunthorpe weir. I was in a lovely peg, for the day, where the faster water on the pegs above (which didn't produce) turned steady, with a great big willow just above me making a nice crease.
    I got 5 bites on a waggler in the last two hours, and hooked 5 big chub - 4lb+ - of which I got one out. The others either made it into the willow or broke me as I tried to hold them away. The one I got out weighed 4lb -odd and got me second The winner, on the peg below, had 4 small chub for 5lb+ on the feeder. Weighing in, the winner pointed at me and said, there's the bloke who should have won it, every time I looked up there his rod was bent round like THAT. He was right, and I'm sure I'd have got them out if I hadn't been so scared of losing them!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    north west london
    Posts
    577

    Default Re: What makes a good match angler???

    Think its a combination of natural talent and the willingness to develop that talent. I regard myself as a distinctly average angler (I catch enough to keep me happy, but if I had to rely on match winnings to survive I would be down the food banks) and remember clearly when i was starting out there were one or two lads in my gang who could catch fish out of a bucket. if you asked them why they adopted any given method or approach they couldnt really tell you much beyond instinct.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    on the move
    Posts
    2,066

    Default Re: What makes a good match angler???

    Although I fished many matches I would never class myself as a match angler. Having been pegged next to true match anglers they were in a different mind zone nothing distracted them from what they were there for and that was to win. I was just there to make up the numbers and give them my pools money.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Stuck on the chuffin M25 somewhere between Heathrow and the A3
    Posts
    11,415

    Default Re: What makes a good match angler???

    Apart from the technical skill required to present the bait in the way the fish want it on any given day/circumstances its feeding for me...and knowing how the fish are reacting to that feed. Its not something I've every truly mastered and I am in awe of those that just instinctively seem to know how much and how often to feed.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Azide the Stour
    Posts
    3,879

    Default Re: What makes a good match angler???

    I'm still working on these interviews as I had a lot to edit out - two more to come - but if you search for 'Phil Coles interview' in Youtube you will find some interesting insights into matchfishing. There are three loaded so far. Phil was closer than most to Ivan in the late 60s and early 70s.

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