The final round of the bait-supplied boat match series sponsored by Loni’s Angling Centre was fished aboard ‘Mistress Linda’ skippered by Phillip Higgins on the 9th of September 2017.

Upon arrival on the quay it was evident that a stiff westerly that had sprung up overnight which would make fishing difficult, therefore inshore marks were to be targeted in order to take full advantage of the shelter afforded by Old Harry Rocks and associated headlands.

Firstly, the skipper (Phil) opted to try and provide some variety to the match and trigger fish were the primary target at anchor near to Boscombe pier. Unfortunately after two half hour sessions it was evident that the trigger fish weren’t playing ball, however, a multitude of other species were quickly found including Ballan & Goldsinney Wrasse, Pout, Bream, Mackerel, Smoothound; as well as a bonus conger for Ed Taylor and a triple shot of Tub Gurnard for Arran Harmer to help them take an initial lead over other anglers.

A number of drifts were then undertaken between Bournemouth and Boscombe piers with the target of flatfish. This proved fruitful with several good sized Plaice and numerous Mackerel and Scad taking baits at all depths.

As the tide faded, Phil opted to try a new rock mark which had been recently uncovered from last winter’s storms. Unsure of what if anything the mark would hold, it was a pleasant surprise to see a plethora of mini species including various Wrasse species as well as Blenny’s, Gobies, Pollock and more Gurnards.

With the weather deteriorating, one final move was made to a series sand banks near to Old Harry Rocks. Unfortunately the sport slowed considerably and the presence of weed made fishing tough. Despite the conditions several further species were added to the scoresheet including Dogfish, Undulate & Small eyed rays and two small Brill caught by Malcolm Gerrish and Brian Dawkins.

Without the numbers of fish coming aboard that had been seen throughout the rest of the day, it made it difficult to catch up with the front runner, Ed Taylor. Ed was fortunate to make the most of his position on the back of the boat catching several Plaice from the last mark, including catching the most of the species throughout the day to boost his score ahead of the others and ultimately win the last match of the series.

A total of 131 fish were boated, comprising of 16 different species.

Having won three out of the six matches as well as coming second in two others, this firmly places Ed Taylor as the overall series winner for 2017- well done.

A big thank you goes out to our sponsor for the match Loni’s Angling Centre who have provided top quality bait throughout.

Thanks must also go to our two skippers who have hosted the series: Kevin Duell- Voyager from Lymington and Phillip Higgins- Mistress Linda from Poole, who have worked tirelessly for us on every occasion