Historically, Daiwa unveils loads of stunning new kit at its annual trade show.
This year, though, because of Covid, things were understandably a little bit different. Instead, Daiwa arranged for me to meet with them at Scotland’s leading commercial, Broom Fisheries, to take a look at – and try out – many of its new products.
It must be noted, though, that while the Daiwa team has worked tirelessly to design and produce some brilliant new tackle, launch dates for many of these items are likely to be spread across 2022.
However, by working closely with Daiwa we aim to bring our readers exclusive reviews and tackle tests, as and when new products become available. Meanwhile, here’s a sneaky peek at a selection of Daiwa’s latest offerings.
AIR Z AGS MATCH RODS
WHAT THEY SAY: These are the ultimate culmination of top-spec and top material builds from Daiwa, and are reckoned to have reached the highest level of rod technology ever!
From their lightweight handling and stunning high-performance Alps reel seats, through to their AGS carbon-built air guide system, they’re quite simply the best!
WHAT WE SAY: Strong stuff indeed, and it isn’t very often that I’m lost for words, but there is little to say other than ‘Wow!’
Only Daiwa can produce rods of this elevation, because only this company has the required technology and manufacturing talent.
As for me, I didn’t particularly like the low-profile AGS guides on the float rods which, in any case are, unfortunately, beyond the depth of my wallet.
But that aside, if I could, then I definitely would.
Price: £525 - £625
N’ZON METHOD FEEDERS AND MOULDS
WHAT THEY SAY: Their unique shape results in a large bait cradle, ideal for wafter-type baits. An Easy Change System adds to their all-round performance.
WHAT WE SAY: Finished with an easy-grip rubberised camo paint, these Method feeders are ideal for use with bigger baits, especially in the larger sizes and heavier weights. In small, medium and large sizes with weights from 20g to 65g.
Price: Feeders £2.99, Moulds £1.99
FOLD-N-GO MATCH BARROW
WHAT THEY SAY: Daiwa set out to design a super-stable barrow that was compact to store, yet easy and quick to load up with gear and get away. It also needed to hold a huge amount of tackle, including buckets, without tipping over when pushed along a slope or used on uneven terrain.
WHAT WE SAY: I took a long hard look at this barrow and how it’s packed away and put back together. Yes, it’s a little bit fiddly at first, but once you’ve done it once it quickly snaps into position.
The sit-up-and-beg handle placements are easy to use, it has a rock-solid steel frame, and its sturdy non-puncturing four-wheel pram design makes it easy to push along. Sadly, I didn’t have an opportunity to load it up and try it out for myself, but I can tell you that its seatbox clamp arms should work on any size box, nailing the Fold-n-Go Barrow on to be a big seller, despite its price.
MATCHMAN FLOAT RODS
WHAT THEY SAY: The new Matchman Float Rod range has three pellet waggler models at 10ft, 11ft and 12ft, plus a 13ft match rod.
Dressed in stainless steel guides with ceramic linings, they are built from a high-grade carbon, and in tests they amazed us and performed brilliantly.
WHAT WE SAY: Lightweight carbon blanks, good fittings, and designed with quick-as-you-like casting actions, these Matchman float rods offer a great performance at an affordable price.
21 QD TOURNAMENT FEEDER REEL
WHAT THEY SAY: Thanks to its Magsealed design that keeps it free from dirt, dust and water, and its unique Long Cast Spool, this is our best-ever big feeder reel.
Other key technical features come include a tough but lightweight Zaion body, QD Quick Drag facility and twin HP line clips.
WHAT WE SAY: Having handled this reel, I couldn’t argue against the 21 QD Tournament Feeder being Daiwa’s best big feeder reel yet.
Ideal when coupled with a distance feeder rod, if you need a long chuck then this reel will deliver on all fronts. Its only downside is its hefty price tag.
Price: £435, www.daiwasports.co.uk
N’ZON EVA KEEPNET BAG
WHAT THEY SAY: Designed to carry two keepnets, one or two net heads, the front pocket has also been designed to carry an N’Zon unhooking mat. This EVA bag is fully sealed and watertight to prevent wetness and smells.
It features a reinforced top rim, a zip-round lid, adjustable carry strap and Velcro closure grip handles.
WHAT WE SAY: There’s nothing much worse than returning to your car the morning after a match to be greeted by an overwhelming stench of stale bream slime. It’s a potential marriage-breaker, too. This bag offers the complete solution.
The fact that it has space for an unhooking mat adds to its appeal. You could also use the front pocket for things like seatbox side trays.
MATCHMAN FEEDER RODS
WHAT THEY SAY: Built from the same HMC carbon cloth as used for the float rods, the new Matchman Feeder rod range features 9ft, 10ft, 11ft and 12ft rods, all with a spare quivertip. Key features include a down-locking reel seat, cork and EVA handles with an Armlock grip, and ceramic-lined guides throughout.
WHAT WE SAY: Sure to be massive sellers next year, Daiwa claims these are the best value-for-money feeder rods the company has ever created.
CONNOISSEUR PRO MATCH
WHAT THEY SAY: One of Daiwa’s longest standing marks, Connoisseur, has been further embellished with no fewer than six new float rods with lengths from 13ft to 17ft. Constructed from the latest X45 Carbon, they’re super lightweight to handle, with quick and clean casting actions that can handle reel lines from 2lb to 8lb and float weights from 3g up to 20g, depending on which model you choose. We’re expecting the longer 14ft and 15ft Power editions to really prove themselves on the Wye, Severn, and Trent.
WHAT WE SAY: Nicely balanced, even in the longest versions, these new Connoisseur float rods are sure to gather plenty of admirers. I concur with Daiwa that the power versions of these superbly designed, high-spec rods will be coveted by those looking to trot powerful rivers for barbel and chub.
Price: £185 - £235
PROREX X RODS
WHAT THEY SAY: Ideal for lighter lure work when targeting perch and zander, these latest additions to the Prorex rod range are a true delight to handle. The high-spec blanks are created using X 45 carbons, original Fuji reel seats and super high quality Fuji Fazlite rings.
WHAT WE SAY: These super-light lure rods with lengths from 7.3ft to 7.8ft weigh as little as 93g, making them perfect for the roving light-lure angler tackling smaller waters.
Price: All lengths £99.99
N’ZON HOOKBAIT BAG
WHAT THEY SAY: Smart and simple, this handy little bag is perfect for keeping all of your hookbaits, liquids and small bait tools close to hand and in the same place.
WHAT WE SAY: As feeder fishing becomes ever-more popular – especially on large commercial carp waters where you need to carry a selection of wafters, pop-ups or small boilies – this natty little bag can save you time hunting for the right bait. It can hold up to eight hookbait tubs, plus a couple of bottles of liquid additives too.
MATCHMAN COMMERCIAL NET PACK
WHAT THEY SAY: These are a ‘go to’ choice for commercial fisheries where you need a pair of nets, or indeed multiple nets, plus a landing net head that will easily fit inside their top ring.
WHAT WE SAY: These space-saving 2.5m-long nets feature a top ring that takes up less room in front of your footplate. Teamed with a utility bar, they make a tidy job of having to use multiple keepnets.
WHAT THEY SAY: The comprehensive new Matchman luggage range has everything the modern match angler could ever need. Holdalls, net bags, carryalls and rod sleeves are all great value for money.
WHAT WE SAY: Very nicely presented in a simple eye-catching black and red livery, key features include smart rubberised zip pullers and super-reliable reinforced carry straps and handles.
Price: From £24.99
HYBRID CHEST WADERS
WHAT THEY SAY: Whether wading on the move or sat on a seatbox in the water, our Hybrid waders, constructed using a unique combination of breathable neoprenes with a quality rubber boot, are warm and comfy to wear.
WHAT WE SAY: Ideal for the matchman, lightweight tailoring and 5mm Neoprene legs allow you to sit comfortably on a seatbox and offer superb warmth and protection. If you hate fishing under a brolly a pair of these, coupled with a Gore-tex jacket, will offer total dryness.