Summer Series triumph for Jimmy Green after stumble on Dunbar rocks

Jimmy Green won the eight-match Summer Series in his first season with the Bass Rock Shore Angling League, but the victory almost didn't happen for the experienced angler.

By Nigel Duncan
Saturday, 4th September 2021, 4:55 am
Summer Series winner Jimmy Green shows off his haul.
Summer Series winner Jimmy Green shows off his haul.

The Musselburgh-based fishermen trailed series leader James Ogilvie by two points going into the final heat and needed a win on the night, but he stumbled walking to his chosen mark on the rocks at The Battery behind the castle at Dunbar Harbour.

The tip of his favourite 15-foot beach caster rod lodged between two rocks. He managed to free it, however, the tip shattered on his first cast.

Dejected, he walked round to his nearest challenger for the title, James Ogilvie, who is also one of the match organisers, to say what had happened and that he might have to go home if the macro rod he had in the car didn't work for him.

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Alan Brown presents the cup to Jimmy Green after his Summer Series triumph.

The 58-year-old spent the next 30 minutes scrambling around in his car boot for tackle, including small weights, to set up the rig and decided to give it a go. Ten minutes later he hooked into a fish and five more came during the three-hour match.

Green totalled three cod, two rockling and a 3.5lb ballan wrasse and it was the big fish which caused him real trouble as the small rod was really bent as he struggled to land the fish over the rocks.

Sportingly, a rival actually climbed down to grab the fish and brought it back to the angler to remove the hook.

The highly-creditable 6lb 1oz haul allowed Green, who has been fishing since he was 11 years old, to win the overall title with 36 points, winning three heats, being placed in three others and blanking in two.

Gus Brindle (left) and Scottish Canal champion Steve Mann.

Other anglers fished the Dunbar Harbour wall and several made for nearby White Sands Beach. Conditions were favourable with a light, North-East breeze, which became chilly late on, and light swell. Some anglers were troubled by seaweed.

Later, as the lights twinkled in the darkness at Dunbar Harbour at around 10.30pm, a relieved Green collected the silverware from club secretary Alan Brown.

Second overall was the experienced Haddington-based James Ogilvie who finished six points adrift. He won three of the eight legs but failed to make the top three in the last one.

Alan Brown (Dunbar) was third overall with 24 points with Simon Swift (Dunbar) fourth on 20 points.

Chris Empson (Dunbar) with 18 points was fifth with Jamie McHale sixth on 14, Fraser Munro seventh on 12 points and eighth equal Neil Anderson (North Berwick), Dale McCallum (Port Seton) and Nicky Brown (Dunbar), on six points.

Green said: "I knew a few of the Bass Rock members when we fished in the Cockenzie and Port Seton club a few years ago and they encouraged me to join them this year.

"James (Ogilvie) was leading and I didn't think I had any chance when the beach caster broke as I was only able to cast around 60 yards with the smaller rod and lighter weights, but I found fish."

Green now plans to go for a title double as the 12-event Winter League starts on Wednesday, September 8 at a venue to be confirmed.

The 11-year-old club, which aims to bring newcomers into the sport and encourage sea angling in the Lothians, held its annual meeting on Friday night in North Berwick.

They continue to seek new members and the subscription this year was £10 for adults and £5 for disabled and senior citizens.

Meanwhile, Steve Mann won the Scottish Canal Championships on the Forth & Clyde Canal near Cumbernauld on a hard day for fishing for the 11 competitors.

The Glasgow-based angler's tactic of targeting perch paid off as he weighed in 3lb 8oz of fish. He was a half-ounce ahead of Fife-based match organiser Gus Brindle, the chairman of the Scottish Federation for Coarse Angling, who weighed in a mixed bag of 3lb 7oz of roach and perch.

Bartek Kozlowski from Livingston was third with 2lb 8oz with Krzysztof Wojtowicz (Cumbernauld) fourth with 2lb 4oz.

Heather Lauriston, Roz Cassidy, Ian Sloss and Wayne Henley from the Edinburgh and Lothians Coarse Angling Club were also in the field and they totalled 1lb 3oz, 1lb 12oz, 1lb 10oz, 1lb 1oz respectively. Krzysztof is a former member of the Edinburgh club.

The weather stayed overcast for most of the match, with a light breeze and there was hardly a ripple which, coupled with the clear water, made the fish extremely wary.

Meanwhile, Edinburgh club host round ten of 11 of their Summer Series at Alex's Pond at Orchill near Auchterarder today. The final match is on September 18.

The Scottish Federation for Coarse Angling hosts its national championship at Broom Fisheries, Annan, on Sunday, September 26 and the draw at the fishery at 9am.

The match fee is £20 and will be fished on Queensberry Water and Bruce's Acre and the match will be capped at 28 anglers.

Finally, fly fishing. Linlithgow Loch has re-opened and Allandale Tarn near West Calder have cut their hours from 9am to 8pm. They are closed on a Tuesday.