Fishing: Reel test at Markle fishery

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SIX teams of six descended on Markle fishery for the Peter Boyle memorial trophy. Strong winds made life difficult for the anglers and the fish were less than cooperative to begin with.

Local team Markle got off to a flyer with Lindsey Keenan first to bag up on his first peg to set the wheels in motion. I started on the opposite bank and never got so much as a pull for at least two hours. After going through my box several times I went with a Black Dancer on a floating line in front of the lodge. Casting well out I started getting offers. It was gentle pulls at first followed by savage tugs that had my heart pounding.

Speeding up the retrieve then stopping dead brought my first solid take. Quite a nice fish at around 3lb.

It was time to move to the smaller pond and after a false cast I was into my second fish and well on to getting my bag limit. This was a much smaller fish at maybe 2lb but, with the conditions worsening, it was a good one.

However, with less than an hour to go, I caught a good one but sadly it slipped the hook. Time was rapidly running out until I hooked the best yet at more than 4lb. This little beauty was enough to land me the best basket on the day and a single malt whisky. Unfortunately it was not enough to help my team win the match.