Stunning 17lb 4oz barbel rocks Nene record

The River Nene barbel record has been rocked after Nigel Bryans slipped the net under this stunning 17lb 4oz specimen.
Fishing on an undisclosed stretch of the waterway, the 52-year-old came agonisingly close to breaking the 17lb 8oz venue best that he already holds when the fish fell for a Three Foot Twitch Dubby boilie.
Upon reaching the river, he paced the bank and fed a number of inviting swims before even wetting a line.
“Looking for areas where barbel are likely to feed is something I prefer to do. I was on the hunt for clear and shallow areas where a few fish could hide,” he said.
A few handfuls of bait were fed in each likely spot, before Nigel spotted signs of life in one of his target zones.
“Once I had cast towards the fish, it didn’t take long before the first of the indications started to show. The rod-tip bounced around for a while, which was quickly followed by that classic barbel bite.
“Its first run nearly took me round a bend in the river and I thought I’d have to go downstream to follow it, but I managed to turn its head and gain some line back.
“After a 10-minute scrap, the fish came to the surface. It was a moment of relief to slip it under the net.”
Nigel’s tackle consisted of a 1.75 test curve rod, a reel loaded with braided mainline and a 4ft-long hooklink to a size 10 specimen hook.
The Nene has proved its big-fish credentials on many occasions in recent years, and Nigel thinks that trend will continue.
“I’ve had two other barbel in the 14lb bracket recently and I’ve also seen bigger fish, so I’m sure it’s just a matter of time before the next record is caught,” he said.