NFSAM First Float Fishing Match 2017 – Match report

Today marked the start of the National Championships after an absence of 3 years. There was a great enthusiasm amongst the anglers who were all eager to start fishing. Luckily the weather cleared up and the section zones were drawn. Zone A started under Tigne point, ending with Zone D before the ferries area.

The match took a slow start with some of the anglers netting in some picarel and mixed bottom fish. Clayton Spiteri and Jason Saliba took a head start by each catching a nice flying gurnard. As the match progressed, anglers tried various methods of float fishing techniques including the running float, fixed float and Bolognese rig set ups to net the fish. Miguel Grech in Section A however, seemed to have a good lead netting in mostly Salema and parrot fish. He was followed closely by Bjorn Grech who managed to lure in some picarel and Carmelo Quattrocchi.

Marshals were on a constant watch to ensure all regulations were being adhered to including checking hook sizes and ensuring fish caught were handled carefully, although we were short handed. From general comments by some of the anglers it was also noted that some anglers tried to opt for a different style of speed fishing, whereby they attempt to foul hook small fish using 2 loose hooks instead of the traditional treble hook. Although there is nothing in the rules condemning this practice, it is 100% unsportsmanlike and the marshals will be instructed to intervene should this be spotted during the next 3 matches.

The winner of the day was Miguel Grech, followed closely by Adrian Nelson and Carmelo Quattrocchi, while team winners of the day were HOFC-A with 3 points, with runners up HOFC-D securing 8 points and HOFC-D in third place with 11 points.

Catch and release was strictly adhered to during the match with all anglers using keep nets. Conservation measures adopted by the federation this year were found to be very effective where less than 0.5 fish per angler dead which were donated for research. All other fish were in excellent condition and were all released carefully including the 2 flying gurnards.

Trophies for the match will be presented at a later date decided by the federation. The venue and whether the next match will be float or open will depend on the permits the federation is currently working on and will be announced one week prior to the match.

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