Brace of 3lb-plus roach on maggot feeder tactics

A couple of bites can be all it takes to turn a blank session into a truly memorable one – just ask Vince Williams, who took a fine brace of huge roach weighing 3lb 1oz and 3lb 4oz just five minutes apart after many hours of watching motionless bobbins.

The 39-year-old all rounder, from Carterton in Oxfordshire, had been targeting a southern stillwater over the winter, and after completing 12 day sessions and five ‘overnighters’, had just one specimen rudd weighing 2lb 11oz to show for his considerable efforts.

However, his luck changed in dramatic fashion one evening last week when his feederfished maggot hookbaits were picked up by the memorable brace just as dusk was falling.

Vince, the secretary of the RAF Football Association, told Angling Times: “I arrived on the Sunday at dawn and apart from bumping a fish off early on, hadn’t had a bite all day until my alarm sounded just before 6pm. I lifted into the fish and could tell it was a decent one, a fact which was confirmed when it slid over the net cord. I could see it was easily a new personal best.”

“Then, just as I was unhooking I received a bite on my other rod, and before I knew it I was staring down at my second huge roach – it was an incredible five minutes!”

Both heavyweight redfins fell double maggot hookbaits, presented helicopter-style alongside a swimfeeder on short 3lb hooklinks, size 18 hooks and 5lb Maxima mainline. These were recast every two hours to a clear area in about 8ft of water just beyond a weedbed at 55yds range.

“It’s been hard work on the venue this winter, not least because of the amount of weed present - like many waters, it hasn’t died off due to the mild winter, and it has made presentation a little tricky at times. I’m just delighted to have finally got among the bigger fish,” added Vince.