Casters are key for classic barbel capture

Forget boilies and big pellets…. Andrew Hawksley used nothing larger than casters and hemp to lure a stunning barbel brace from the River Taff, topped by a 13lb 4oz cracker.

The student from Cardiff also banked a fish weighing 10lb 3oz after targeting a club-owned stretch of the Welsh river with a balanced float set-up for just a few hours after work.

The biggest of the brace was a new personal best for the 19-year-old, who used double caster hookbaits over a steady loosefeed.

He told AT: “Once I hooked the barbel they both went on a powerful runs, and I had little choice but to keep the rod bent and pressure on the fish, but without bullying them too much. “

Read the full story and see more pics in next week’s Angling Times, on sale Tuesday 13 September.