Victory in the inaugural Feeder World Championships will be Tommy Pickering’s aim after the Yorkshire legend was this week appointed manager of the England team to do battle this September.
Former World Champion Tommy will take a team to Italy to compete in the new competition on the September 1 and 2 and the softly spoken Doncaster man believes his side has a fantastic chance of returning home with gold medals from the fledgling event – and he may even pull on the Three Lions shirt himself to fish again.
“I’m delighted to be asked to be manager of the England feeder team and I will be a fishing manager so will take Glen Lawrence with me, the current Barnsley Blacks captain, and he will be my right-hand man,” said Tommy. “I hope to announce the team in February and I’ve got an idea of who I hope to take in the team of five and I’ve already spoken to a few of them.
“I’ll run a series of matches and invite anglers along so I can watch them fish and see if they are suitable to take to Italy. Fishing abroad is completely different – it’s a different climate, different baits are used and there are different fish.”
This year all England teams will be competing in Italy over the same week in the World Games. There will be events running at the same time, so Tom will be restricted as to which anglers he will take in the squad to fish the River Tevere in Perugia – for example the likes of Raison and Scotthorne will be fishing the men’s event, likewise several of England’s talented juniors.
“The most exciting part of this is that it is a brand new competition,”
Tommy added. “It’s a fantastic opportunity for anglers who never thought they’d represent England to now be able to. Other countries like Germany, France and Italy are already holding trials and preparing. It’s definitely going to be a big competition and we’re waiting to hear about a sponsorship deal and I’m 95 per cent sure we’ll get it. If we do, then I can start making more plans.”
Tommy was part of the England team for many years and was also successful as manager of the England Ladies side.
Angling Trust international events manager, Dick Clegg thinks he is perfect for the job: “Tom’s credentials are ideal and I had no hesitation in asking him to accept the position of manager.”