A homemade boilie proved to be the key ingredient for specimen angler Neill Stephen when he hooked into this 16lb 2oz barbel from the river Loddon.
With just a few hours to fish his chosen stretch of the waterway, the London-based rod decided to experiment with swims, casting his rig, complete with a size 8 hook and paste wrapped around the lead, into the middle of one of the area’s last remaining ‘cabbage beds’.
“I made a few casts, none of which felt right, but I decided to leave the last one anyway,” Neill told AT. “Half an hour later the rod slammed round and I connected with what felt like a good barbel. The fight was over quickly and when I lifted the net up and felt the weight I got very excited.