Fresh calls for pike to count in matches

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OVER the past few seasons we have seen an explosion of pike on the River Nene.

OVER the past few seasons we have seen an explosion of pike on the River Nene. I know of anglers that have stopped fishing for roach because just about every fish they hook is taken by pike. All this usually occurs during the summer months when the river runs clear.

There are now calls for pike to count in matches - much as they did several years ago, but I have so say that I have grave doubts about the merits of pike counting in anglers match weights.

Only a couple of weeks ago I know of an angler fishing on the River Nene at Oundle that managed to net six pike, which together with his catch of roach and skimmers could well have weighed in 30lb plus and won the match.

Nothing wrong with that you may say but if pike are allowed I believe strict rules regarding baits and fishing practices would need to be stringently applied and we are hard pressed to enforce rules now and we would open up a huge can of worms.

Some clubs around the country still allow anglers to re-hook prey fish being attached with the pike weight to count.

If you are talking about an odd fish I could understand it but on the River Nene I am positive the top five anglers would be those with pike and we could see a match winner with 100lb plus of pike taken on prey fish.

It is not for me and I firmly believe we would soon see a drastic reduction in anglers fishing matches around here if clubs do allow pike to be caught on whatever method anglers care to employ.