David Pratt 15lb Tench

The biggest tench ever caught by design in Britain has just been reported, after David Pratt slipped the net under this ludicrous fish, weighing 15lb exactly.
The Rotherham-based specialist angler had the whopper from a weedy Midlands stillwater on a worm kebab rig. It’s just three ounces off Darren Ward’s 2001 British Record – a fish many anglers believe will never be bettered. David, who fishes for specimens of all species (except carp!), was unsurprisingly blown away by the tench.

He said “I was in shock when I saw it – not only was it fat, but also incredibly long. Before this one, my PB was 10lb 12oz, although I’ve had a few other ‘tens’. Something tells me this is a fish I’ll struggle to beat!”. David had the tench from a spot around 25-yards out, where he baited with pellets, dead maggots, chopped worm and hemp.

“I’ve fished the water for a few years, and as it’s so weedy, things can be quite tricky,” he explained. “When I had the run, I lifted into what was clearly a heavy fish. It made powerful, slow runs – classic of a big fish – before I brought it to the net in with some weed around its head. That was when I realised that I’d caught a really long fish – I use a 32” pan net, and its tail was sticking out the end! Once we had it on the mat and I got a glimpse of how broad and fat it was, I knew it was a truly big fish.” David tamed the history-maker on 12lb mainline, a 9lb hooklink, and a size 10 hook. He fished his worm kebab rig helicopter-style, using a bomb, rather than a feeder, and cast it out with a 1.5lb tc rod.

Well done David!