Fly fishing gear

Scottish fishermen frustrated after tough test on Croatian banks

The Cumbernauld-based angler finished 88th out of over 170 and he admitted to being frustrated when things didn’t go to plan.

Woodrow and other members of the five-man squad have revealed what the tartan guys are up against, including rivals have support staff of up to eight and their own chefs. Scotland had two support staff and no chief.

Also, tactics changed at the last minute when inland anglers brought out their bolo rods, a style of fishing the Scots are not used to. However, the Tartan team is determined to move up the rankings significantly in future global competitions.

Darrin Ferguson in action at Orchill earlier this season. By Nigel Duncan

Overall, Woodrow said he felt like it came together in practice only to have a “stench” of a session afterwards.

He admitted: “It blew your mind that it didn’t go to plan. I guess it wasn’t much of a surprise that we all struggled on matchdays. I came back ninth and eleventh in the sections of 17 men and the team finished a disappointing 26th out of 33.”

Woodrow – nicknamed Woody – added: “I’ve really enjoyed it at times and learned a lot, but it was so frustrating when you think you’re there then, half an hour into the next practice session, and you’re already thinking, ‘No, that’s not true.'”

Serbia won gold and the team which also included Dave McAuley, who made his debut at the event.

McAuley, a specialist product manager at Tackle Guru, finished 102nd, two places below Edinburgh’s David Corcoran, and the Wishaw-based angler said: “I was in contention for decent section points just so that my catch rate is slowing down from the first two hours that took me down the section to finish 12th and 10th.”

The match was split between two venues due to low water levels and that, McAuley said, made things even more difficult as Scotland had to learn both with limited training time.

He added: “The main site was almost entirely dedicated to coarse and whip fishing. The other site we thought would be more of a slider (fishing) at 25/35m. On Thursday and Friday when we We trained at the main site, this has changed to fishing with long bolo rods with 10g-12g bolo floats at 25m.

“For us it was a totally new style and without proper training and equipment it was almost impossible for us to score decent points in those sections.

“Even if the result does not reflect it, the team has worked extremely hard to find the best method for a better result.

“When you see so many countries now with support teams of six to eight men on the bank all week gathering information, it’s very difficult with just the team and two other men on the bank.”

Derek Brady, who acted as one of two support staff for the team, said: “We had a world championship event where you have three sections at a venue and two sections at a another site 40 kilometers away.

“Our guys are very good anglers and they did pretty well in sections A, B and C catching roach, skimmers, catfish and even odd carassios, but in sections D and E it changed completely and became a bolo match giving us four bad scores on both sections on both matchdays.”

Brady added: “When you look at the other teams with their large entourage with bank runners for every competing angler, with the Italians and a few other teams even bringing their own leader with them, it shows what we’re up against.

“However, there was a nice touch from the Italy squad when their chef came over after day five of training with bowls of pasta for all of our lads. Class act indeed.”

Meanwhile, club champion and Knockout Cup winner Darrin Ferguson added another title to his collection this season by winning the rod and reel competition hosted by Edinburgh and Lothians Coarse Angling Club.

He pocketed 49lbs at Snake Lake on Orchill Fishery near Auchterarder and second was club stalwart Tommy Lauriston at 16lbs 12oz with his daughter, Heather Lauriston third at 14lbs 13oz.

Sea Fishing Now and Newcastle’s Chris Stringer won the Erskine Open organized by the Scottish Federation of Sea Anglers with 32 fish with David Neil of Ayr second with 23 fish and Neil Cutler, also of Tyneside, also third with 23 fish .

Brian Maxwell (Ayr) was fourth with 18 fish and the junior winner was Ayr-based Callum Brown with 22 fish. Stranraer’s Bruce McLean had the longest fish, a 46cm cod.

In the meantime, fly fishing and congratulations to Colin Wilson who caught a 4lb+ brown trout on the Almond River this week, the biggest reported so far this season.

Moving on to calm waters and Bill Taylor, skipper of Glencorse Reservoir in the Pentlands, said the fishing had improved lately and there had been some bumper bags with a number of cracked brown trout caught and returned. His season ends on October 16.

Nearby Clubbiedean reports that Greg Gifford and Nathan Horner had 14 fish at the boat while David Menzies and Ross Morrison had 20 fish between them. Decoys and fry models work well on midge tip.

Sean Williams had 14 in his session at Harlaw fishing a marabou bloodworm under an indicator and Robin Persaud (horn) attempted six fish.

At Black Loch near Falkirk, anglers have caught froth daddies, buzzers and yellow owls, but are starting to move to intermediate lines as the water cools. Penicuik Angling Club is among recent visitors and anglers should note that the water is now closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.

The fishery is open from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday to Sunday. Call 07527254811 for information and reservations.

Robert Birrell attempted ten fish at Bowden Springs and a best of 7lb on patterns of yellow dancers, eggs and twisty worms.

J Mollon attempted a 10lb trout on an Ally McCoist and D McMahon hooked a 12lb rainbow on a black and silver lure.

Drumtassie Trout Fishery near Blackridge is celebrating its fifth anniversary with a fun day on Saturday September 24 from 9am to 3pm with a bouncy castle, cotton candy, clay pigeon shoot, raffle and prizes.

Allandale Tarn boss Iona Allan has confirmed normal hours will resume from Saturday September 24 (still closed on Tuesdays) with fishing until 8pm.

Finally, Tyler Hay of the Lintrathen club near Kirriemuir caught 18 fish for 38lb 13.2oz at Lake Menteith to become the 130th Scottish National Champion.

The angler caught a bungee during the event and said, “It was always a competition I wanted to win.”

Second was his boat partner Martin McCafferty of the Future Fly Fishing Club with 13 trout for 28lb 13oz and third Gregor Fleming of Bridge of Weir Loch AC who also landed 13 trout but for 26lb 10oz.

A total of 273 anglers took part in the heats and the top 18 anglers in the final qualified for the Scottish teams next year with Derek Marklow of Loanhead and District AC coming in 17th.