This year saw the junior and senior Western Province (WPDSAA) teams, Border (BDSAA), two teams from Eastern Cape (EPDSAA), as well as a Barbarian Team fishing in the Kleinbaai Bottom Fish Inter Provincial in the third instalment of this esteemed annual tournament. The host club Overberg Boat Club, chaired by Stephen Ashlin, and assisted by Riaan van Staden, DP Burger and all the Overberg members, put together a well structured and superbly organised tournament.
At the opening function all the provinces were present and old ties and friendships were rekindled and good old fashioned camaraderie was the order of the day. We also saw some newly capped anglers taking part this year and that is always good to see. EPDSAA, the defending champs, were eager to defend their title this year and everyone else were determined to wrest it away! Once the traditional boat draw was conducted the game was set and the teams were raring to get out on the water.
This is a bottom fish competition, which tends to get exciting due to the species multiplier rules. Last year EPDSAA took first place with good weight and six species on the last day. However, the snoek was absent this year and this would ultimately have an interesting effect on the overall catch weights. Breakfast was served at 06H00 at Overberg Boat Club and all the anglers were visibly excited and eager for the competition to get underway. It was decided that we would wait for sunrise to assess the conditions properly before setting out, as there was a gusty northerly wind blowing.
Luck was with the anglers as the wind dropped off a little and they were able to get out to sea from Kleinbaai. Overberg are fortunate in that they have a choice of two slips from which to launch, Kleinbaai and Gansbaai, depending on what the wind and swell conditions are on the day. And on the first day Kleinbaai served up the best conditions for the anglers to launch from.
At the close of the first day, all the competitors congregated around the scales and although each team had at least caught something that could be weighed, on the whole, not many fish had been caught. There were a few bite-off’s which would suggest that there could indeed be a few snoek around, but no one had seen any.
Among the pickings were Red Roman, Carpenter, Red Stumpnose and Gurnett. The biggest Red Roman was caught by Juandre Geldenhuys, WPDSAA Jnr Captain, weighing in at 2.3 kg as well as the biggest Carpenter weighing in at 1.9 kg. The biggest Red Stumpnose, a fish of 2.9 kg, was caught by Eugene van Tonder from the EPDSAA Red Team, while Phillip van der Walt on the WPDSAA Snr team caught the biggest Gurnett of 1.3 kg.