Rob Malseed 33lb 4oz pike

“For more than 20 years I’ve been trying to beat my pike best of 21lb and it finally happened during my latest session”

“It was a Friday and I arrived at my Essex syndicate after work and deposited three deadbaits at varying distances with my bait boat – one to a 10ft-deep spot at 50 yards, another in the margins and a final rod between the two at around 25 yards.

Sadly it was a quiet night and by 3pm the next day I hadn’t had so much as a bleep, so I decided to reel in and swap the deadbaits for some fresh ones.

I put lamprey and smelt on two of the rods but I also packed this giant herring which was around a foot long!

I’d normally cut a bait this size in half but I had nothing to lose so just stuck it on whole.
Before I shipped the baits back out to their spots I realised I had an un-opened boilie grinder at the bottom of my tackle bag and had what you might call a bit of a brainwave…
Without hesitation I filled it with chopped pieces of mackerel, sardine and herring and mushed them up.

I poured the mush into the compartment in my bait boat, added maggots and bread crumb then ferried it out to each of my three marks, before using the boat again to drop my rigs and deadbaits back into position.

I hadn’t put the last rod down when the herring rod at 25 yards bleeped a couple of times then signalled a single toner!

I was quick to strike but saw my line kite fast to my right, so it was a bit of a panic trying to keep up with it.

There were a few heavy tugs but I didn’t think the fish was that special, at least until I saw the slap of its tail at the net and thought: ‘this could be the one.’ I was in shock…

This was the first pike that had ever scared me – its shoulders were massive!
The feeling of seeing the scales pull round to over 30lb was overwhelming. I’d waited 20 years for this moment.

All those years of blanking made me think outside the box and now I have a new PB of 33lb 4oz because of it.

It shows that by being brave and trying new things you will eventually get the result you want.”