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At Last Geldart is the Master!
Andy Geldart held off a late challenge from England star Callum Dicks to win his first ever Parkdean Masters title in a stellar field at White Acres in Cornwall.
Andy took the £25,000 first prize, alongside one of the most coveted titles in match fishing, winning the match with 84lbs 2oz of carp and silver fish from Peg 3 of Jenny’s Lake.He held his nerve as a late charge from Callum pushed him to the very end in a thrilling match on Jenny’s Lake.
It was sweet revenge for the Leeds-based angler, who missed out on the title by less than a single fish to Jamie Wilde the year before.
“It’s still sinking in. I had one of those matches when everything I did just seemed to work for me,” he said.
Andy said initially he didn’t fancy his chances from Peg 3 of Jenny’s as bright sunshine and high pressure ensured a tough battle between the 24 finalists
But his method feeder approach, switching hook baits to match the size of fish he was catching, ensured the carp kept coming when others saw their bites diminish.
“It’s out of this world. Unbelievable. I was beaten by Jamie last year by a couple of pounds, fishing from Peg 4. This year I’ve fished a very similar match from next door on peg 3, “ said Andy.
“I used a method feeder with 4mm pellets to catch everything I could at the start, from skimmers to small carp. Then when a few bigger carp arrived, I switched to an 8mm pellet and luckily the big fish kept coming.”
Andy joins Steve Ringer and Neil Machin in a select group who’ve won both the Parkdean title and Fishomania. The 2003 Parkdean Masters champion Steve finished third with 42lbs 12oz from Peg 23.
It was Andy Power who was the instant favourite at the draw when he pulled out Peg 16. The carp refused to switch on until late in the match though as he managed just 32lbs 13oz.
The match treated onlookers to a fascinating battle between experience and youth as a new generation of match angling talent displayed their skills.
Five-times World Champion Alan Scotthorne, Steve Cooke and Jack Harness were pushed hard by teenagers Tom Edwards and Joe Kent, plus 16-year-old Sam Collett, who became the youngest ever Parkdean Masters finalist.
It seemed a chilly easterly wind had pushed feeding fish away from higher peg numbers and into the zone in front of Andy Geldart and Callum Dicks on pegs 3 and 4.
Callum appeared to be catching Andy as worm, fished shallow on pole tactics, enticed several big fish in the last hour. But as the gap closed between them, Andy held his nerve to land three Jenny’s Lake crackers in the last 10 minutes.
The match came at the end of a hotly contested festival week at the Cornish venue. 180 anglers had competed in five matches over five days for the right to make the final.
For the first time ever, the final will be shown in a one-hour special on Sky Sports, presented by Andy Ford.