Christie sprints to victory

Last Updated: 10/06/09 1:57pm

Builder Paul Christie cemented his place in the Fish 'O' Mania Grand Final with a convincing victory in the eleventh round of this year's qualifiers.

The 36-year-old, from Sandtoft near Doncaster, triumphed in his first ever qualifier after being drawn on peg two on Maple lake, at the Oaks Fishery, Sessay, North Yorkshire.

Heavy overnight rain and cool blustery winds met the anglers when they arrived at the venue, where many big names were still trying to gain one of the last few qualifying spots.

But Paul swept all before him; he fished pellet and caster while the majority of his carp haul of 23kilo 125g came from fishing shallow with casters.

After his victory, Paul admitted that he was "somewhat shell-shocked" but added that he was looking forward to taking part in the Grand Final.

Second spot with 16kilo 060g went to David Woodworth, a Learning Disability Nurse from Upton, in the Wirral fishing peg 1 next to the winner on Maple.

David, who fished chopped worm down the margins and caster shallow across, felt on reflection that he had probably spent too much time on the worm before going shallow across on the caster and that was why he missed out on top spot.

Third place also came from Maple with Rob Hitchins on peg 1, fishing pellet.

Rod struggled to keep the fish coming, though his move to fishing meat shallow ¾ across in the last 40 minute of the match brought him instant response with further fish following to give him a finishing weight of 16kilo.

Rob felt after the match that he made the wrong decision on tactics; had he gone on the meat earlier then who knows, could there have been another Grand Final spot with his name on it.

Fourth spot went to Alan Crouch from Sheffield with 14kilo 900g from Cedar 12, with Marc Jones from Wakefield taking the fifth spot with 13kilo 700g.

Once again the changeable weather was the governing factor.

Although there was settled weather up to the weekend, there was a marked drop in temperatures before the match and heavy overnight rain put paid to many competitors' expectations of good weights from both Cedar and Maple lakes.