East Lothian angler earns second Home International bank fishing call-up

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
John Donaldson has fished his way into the seven-strong Scotland Stillwater Bank Fishing team for the Home International.

The Port Seton angler will take his place in the seven-strong team at Ellerdine Lakes near Telford in England later this year.The 55-year-old angler qualified in the seventh and final place in the final at Burnhouse Lochan with 13 fish and he joins only one member of last year's gold medal squad in the team.That's Kevin Andrews from Kilmarnock who was second in the final with 17 fish, nine behind the winner, Greg Hoggan from Stirling, who took the trophy for the second time in three years.Other qualifiers were Brian Kennedy from Newton Means (13 fish), Stephen Cowan from Linwood (12), Martin Stewart from Peebles (14) and Ian Scott from Kilmaurs (13).Last year's captain, Graeme Lynch, finished in 13th place with ten fish and failed to make the team along with another Ayrshire-based angler, Kyle Courtney (five fish) and Michael Ward (three fish) on a day when 229 fish were caught and returned.Donaldson has only been in the Stillwater Bank team once before and he helped them claim gold in 2018 at Chatton Fishery in England. He said: "Hopefully, that will be an omen for this year."Donaldson, who works in IT for the Scottish Government, added: "I'm really pleased to have made the team again and congratulations to everyone else who made the team. I'm looking forward to a trip to Ellerdine Lakes in October to fish the international."Looking back, the East Lothian-based angler said: "I’ve made a couple of the Stillwater Bank finals since 2018, but this is the first time since then that I’ve qualified again."I’ve never fished Ellerdine, the only small water I’ve fished down south is Chatton. I normally fish small waters over the winter and enjoy the competitions and I usually fish Burnhouse where I’m in the team."We've won the Inter-Fisheries Quaich for the last couple of years and that is between us, Newhouse, Bangour and High Cleughearn." Donaldson also fishes Newhouse and Kinross and he's looking forward to Tweeddale near Gifford re-opening again and he said: "During the main season, I fish with the Wiremill Angling Club, where I’m also secretary. The club fishes boat venues like Glencorse, Frandy, Coldingham and The Watch, and, In the summer I fly fish for mackerel off the rocks at Port Seton."Elsewhere, Kevin McCabe from Haddington won the first heat of the Scottish National Trout Fly Fishing Championship at the Lake of Menteith, beating 42 other anglers.McCabe of Change Fly Fishing Angling Club hooked into 21 fish for 42lb 14.8oz and was well ahead of the second-placed angler, George Telford of Avonbank Fishery who are based at Millhall near Polmont. He totalled 16 fish for 32lb 12.4oz.Third was Glasgow Post Office angler John Simpson also with 16 fish but his weight was 31lb 15.1oz.The championship is sponsored by Penicuik-based Fishers Direct and Vision Fly Fishing UK and Tom McTaggart, secretary of the organisers, the Scottish Anglers National Association, Competition Clubs, said the 43 anglers had to contend with torrential rain as they set off at the start of the session. He added: "The heat was fished to a two fish kill with 2lb being awarded for each returned fish and a total of 363 fish for 772 lbs were caught and the top 22 anglers progress to the semi-finals." Other Lothians-based anglers who made it through were Derek Marklow from the Loanhead and District Club who was fifth with 14 fish for 30lb 8.4oz while Jamie McLeary of the Black Bull Fly Fishing Club at Dalkeith was 17th with nine fish for 18lb 15.80oz.Stuart Marklow also from Loanhead and District also made the top 22, finishing 20th with seven fish for 17lb 6.60oz.Heat 2 at Harelaw Trout Fishery at Neilston near Glasgow on Friday (April 12) saw 38 anglers face a chilly, wet and blustery day. They caught 127 fish.Top rod was Alan Harvey of Greys Menteith Ospreys with eight fish for 15lb 11.80oz with Wayne Cram of West Lothian Fly Dressers second with seven for 14lb 4.90oz. Kyle Courtney of Flybox was third also with seven fish but for 14lb 4oz and he was a member of the gold medal winning team in the Home International at Largs last year.Agnes Thomas from Juniper Green, the only women entrant in the heats, who is a member of the Bank of Scotland East Angling Club and a former Scottish international, was seventh with 10lb 6.30oz with 19 qualifying for the semi-finals.

Related topics: