At last a warmer week if a little wet. At the draw the lake was looking quite coloured with a bit of a ripple and looking good for a few fish. Out of the bag came peg 8 - again. In fact, our bank was a rerun of last match with me on 8, Tony on 7 and Mark on 6. At least that made setting up a bit quicker.
With a stiff breeze forecast it was time to gamble - did I start at 6 or 7 sections? Phil got off to a flying start with a carp in the net in the first 5 minutes. For the rest of us it took a while longer. Next was Mark to get in on the action with a run of carp but annoyingly only the one getting to the net. And then it was Tony and John picking up carp. At this stage Peter and I were stuck in the middle of the lake with just a few roach between us until Peter found a carp down the edge. It was now 12:30 - 3 hours in and things were not looking great for me - I was well and truly in last position. Finally, I hooked a carp only to have a very large scale come back on the hook after a short tussle but at least it was not a roach. A hopeful drop back in the same spot just produced a roach - not going well at all.
Around me the carp kept coming with Tony steadily adding a few with Phil, Peter and John also picking off the odd better fish. At about 1pm I at long last had a carp out in the middle, only small, but worth a lot of the tiny roach I was catching. But that was it, back to the roach. With nothing to lose it was time to put a bigger pot of maggots down the edge to hopefully feed off some of the small fish and it worked. Between the roach a few carp put in an appearance with just the one more scale coming back with a foulhooker. It was too little too late in what was a lot closer finish than I thought it would be - Peter opposite looked to be emptying the place and we all thought he had walked it.
In a very tight finish (under 5lbs between the top 4) - 1st Toni Cruci 37lbs 12oz, 2nd Phil Whitmill 36lbs 10oz and 3rd Peter Green 34lbs 9oz.
Sorry Tony not quite quick enough on the camera button before you looked down. There was also around 6lbs of mostly decent perch to go with these carp.