The Nerves. Well i must of put in 50 hours of fishing and tied over 300 flies in preperation for May 7th. Never have i been as ready for a competition. The I.T.F.F.A. Leinster Corcoran Cup is a qualifier in our province that qualifies you if successful
to fish the Interprovincial later the same year.18 fishermen can qualify from this event from each province, so that will make a total of 72 anglers in the Interprovincial final. Three places had already been filled before the competition started from successful
anglers fishing the Interprovincial and National Finals the year previously. I know its slightly complicated and as P.R.O. i get many calls, texts etc etc about the qualification system. So i am well versed in the subject.When you look back at last years results
it left 15 anglers to qualify on the day. But that did not take into account that two anglers fishing the competition had qualified already, if they qualified again there would be an extra place on the day
The match was to start at 10am and finish at
6pm. So i arrived nice and early and set the boat up. The first angler i met was John Plunkett, he was as eager as ever, boat set up and tying on his cast. We looked out into Fagans Bay, it was alive with fish, the trout were rising everywhere, being flat
calm and bright we could see way out into the lake, fish were rising everywhere.
Noel Shiels and his Leinster committee were busy bees sorting out anglers with their catch cards, boat partners and measures. This was going to be a total catch and release
My Boat Partner for the day was Pat Noonan, Pat had only fished the lake twice before and was willing to follow my lead at least for the first couple of hours. The hooter went and instead of stopping in Fagans Bay we headed up the right
arm of the lake to a place called the wooden house. Luckily we were first to arrive and as it was flat calm i positioned the boat in the most productive are in the bay. On the way to the area i set up a washing line cast consisting of three buzzers and booby
on the point. Pat went for a straight line buzzer cast with three buzzers.
On his first cast Pat connected with a fish and as he played his , i popped a booby along the surface and a fish bulged in the water behind the fly, i kept figure of eighting
slowly until i felt a weight on the end of the line, then i pulled the line and set the hook. One fish each on our first cast. I landed another on my next cast on a buzzer, but lost two more on my third and fourth cast. Over the next half hour i got 6 or 7
very tentavive takes that produced nothing.
We kept fishing, i swapped between the washing line and the bung. At 1pm i had 6 fish in the boat and Pat had 3. Pat got stuck into another fish and as i got up from my seat i must have twisted and stretched
a little too much as i handed Pat my net. Well the pain that went up my leg, shocking to say the least. I was immobiliyed for at least 10 minutes. I caught one more fish before we left the area at 4.30pm as did Pat. We had waited all day for buzzers
to hatch, they normally hatched at 11am and 3pm ish but we saw nothing. These are the chances you take. I must thank Peter Mc Cartin for the pain killers, without them i would not of been able to continue.
We headed up the lake with 5 and 7 fish repectively
on the cards , on the way to Gilsenans i stopped briefly as a couple of fish rose together. Sure enough as i popped the booby a fish slammed into it. We continued on to the point of Gilsenans, John Maguire and Stuart Marry were fishing on the point of the
bay, a quick chat with them told me that the lake was fishing hard , but with some good bags being recorded. Colin Cahill and DJ Byrnes had at least a dozen fish a piece, . John and Stuart were also doing well and had 6 and 8 fish respectively on the cards.
John told me there were fish still moving in the area. Sure enough a fish rose to the right of my bung and then rose to the left of my bung and then the bung dissappered. The fish fought hard but soon enough Pat was marking it on my card. Pat also hooked
a fish but after a long battle with the fish going in and out of the reeds, it finally got off.
It was getting late so we decided to move, but unfortunately we could not add to the card. We docked at 5.57pm and handed in the cards.
Leinster Corcoran Cup Lough Lene. Congratulations to Daniel J Byrne on catching 13 fish and claiming his second Provincial title beating Colin Cahill into second. Colin also did really well catching 13 fish, two outstanding performances on such a bad
I was surprised when i was announced third rod overall with 9 fish. I could of and should of fished better. Staying too long up at the wooden house was my downfall, but these are decisions you make, saying that i was glad it was all over
and John Maguire and myself had qualified for the team.This is Johns first Leinster Cap and i am delighted for him.
Many thanks to Tom Fagan and committee of Lough Lene for allowing the qualifier to be held on the lake. Under Horrendous conditions
67 anglers caught 181 Fish.
The qualifiers below will now fish the Interprovincial on Lough Mask later thei zear in september