“I woke up this morning thinking I had just had the most amazing dream about qualifying for the Fish 'O' Mania Final and the Maver Match This Final in the last five days… It took me a good few minutes to convince myself that it had actually happened.”
These were the words of angling legend and Preston Innovations and Sonubaits-backed ace Tom Pickering, who in five days has secured himself a place in this year's Maver Match This and Fish 'O' Mania finals.
The former World Champion took the win in the Match This qualifier at The Oaks Fishery at Sessay. It was, however, the recent win in the Fish 'O' Mania qualifier at Messingham Sands that meant the most to the 58-year-old Doncaster rod.
Tommy explained: “Although I was delighted to have qualified for the Maver Match This Final, there is something about being in the Fish 'O' Mania Final that is extra special. I have fished it once before, and the buzz was just amazing.”
In the Fish 'O' Mania qualifier, he drew on Peg 30 on Oak Tree Lake and fished a banded 8mm pellet at six metres on the pole to take a total of 42 carp throughout the match, with the largest going to 8lb to give him a total weight of 144lb 10oz.
Second place fell to Frenzee and Bait-Tech rod Andy Neal who finished just short with 125lb 8oz. In third place was ever-consistent Matrix rod Grant Albutt, who bagged 113lb 9oz.
Tommy went on: “I have had two lovely day's fishing – angling is all about making the most of your good runs, because you certainly have enough bad ones!
"I can't wait for the finals now – I will be putting everything into practising for the Fish ‘O’ Mania Final first – and then concentrate on Match This after that.”