If there is one venue that can live up to its fine reputation for producing top quality winter action then it has to be the Old Nene at March.
On a bitterly cold weekend the venue once again produced what must go down as the best natural venue result right across the country.
In fact it was even better than many carp waters such was the form of this fenland water in round five of the Angling Trust Winter League.
Leading the way on the individual front was the ever consistent Mark Pollard. He did draw very well at the Wigston Bridge area but his 38lb 5oz was an outstanding catch.
He is one of the country’s best exponents at pole fishing but this match saw him whipping the water to a foam on the 4-metre line fishing the short whip to hand fishing bread punch all day.
Runner-up was Andy Mead, who put 24lb 9oz to the scales, then came James Drakulic on 22lb 9oz and Pete Vasey with 21lb 5oz.
Stanjay Gold from Huntingdon took the team honours with just 24 points then it was Sensas Mark One on 26. They had three section wins that eased them ahead of Matrix Image on the same points, with league favourites Browning Hotrods slipping down to fourth on 29 points.
So now it’s all change at the top of the leaderboard once again. With one match to go Stanjay Gold and Sensas Mark One top the table with 11 points each then come Browning Hotrods with 13 and Matrix Image with 15.
Just take a look at the section winners below. I don’t think you will see a better set of weights from any winter league or indeed open match in the country.
A Section - Alex Bates 18lb 12oz
B Section - Rob Wright 18lb 6oz
C Section - James Drakulic 22lb 9oz
D Section - Mark Pollard 38lb 2oz
E Section - Pete Vasey 21lb 5oz
F Section - Rob Hubbard 14lb 5oz
G Section - Dale Stones 13lb 4oz
H Section - John Taylor 16lb 5oz
J Section - Graham Welton 12lb 3½oz
K Section - Mick Dixon 10lb 2oz
So now the action switches to Raveley Drain. The best pegs will produce but it’s the pegs away from the fish that will see the league won and lost as some sections are going to be tough going.
There were some consistent weights from the Decoy opens at the weekend.
On Saturday, Nigel Baxter just managed a win from the Beastie Lake with 48lb 12oz of carp most taken on a waggler with maggot.
Jimmy Brooks took second place on 48lb 4oz, then came Steve Pell with 41lb 8oz.
The Horseshoe was the venue for Sunday’s open with Billy Smalley out in front on peg three, catching on the pole with pellet for 52lb 13oz.
Jonny Smalley came in second fishing a small feeder for 49lb 10oz, then came Simon Godfrey with 45lb.
It was grim for the JVAC anglers not drawn in the high number pegs on Sunday’s match fished on the Willows.
Top rod from peg 29 was Alan Warren. He caught steadily all day on the pole with pellet to finish on 56lb 11oz.
At the next peg was Jay Richardson. He also fished the long pole with pellet taking the runner up spot with a level 50lb. In third place from peg 35 was Andy Gausden.