Close to home for four 2lb river roach

Roach fishing fanatic Mike Townsend made the catch of a lifetime when he banked four river redfins over 2lb on float tackle.
The specialist from Doncaster, South Yorkshire, has spent the last 15 years travelling to some of the south’s most famous roach fisheries to satisfy his obsession with catching specimens of the species.
But he struck gold when a waterway just minutes from his home ironically produced the incredible catch which comprised roach weighing 2lb 2oz, 2lb 1oz and a couple at 2lb on the nail.
“I really can’t believe the fact that I’ve spent so many years travelling and clocking up thousands of miles in search of big roach at venues such at the Hampshire Avon, yet I’ve done this on my doorstep. I’m blown away,” said Mike.
The fish were caught in the space of just a couple of hours and were kept within range with the introduction of loosefed casters. Mike then trotted a tiny Drennan dibber float expertly through the swim.
His winning rig was made up of a 0.10mm hooklink tied to a size 18 hook on to which were threaded two casters.
“I lost one fish that was even bigger than the rest, landed another two just under the 2lb mark and probably could have winkled out a few more, but a small pike started showing an interest so I called it a day,” he said.
“River fish like this are so rare from up north, but to catch a bag of them is really something else.”