Jamie Makes It Three!
When it comes to qualifying for big money finals be it Fish’O’Mania, Match This or Golden Reel, Spotted Fin’s own Jamie Hughes is undoubtedly at the top of the tree. Over the past few years he has been at nearly every single one and won a record breaking three Fish’O’Mania titles since 2013. For the 2019 season though, the Wirral based angling coach seems to have stepped it up a gear, as we type this we are barely into May and he has fished a total of just 11 qualifiers and won three of them!
We caught up with the man himself following his latest success on the Maver Match This qualifier at Tunnel Barn Farm…
Spotted Fin: Congratulations on qualifying for all three of the major finals in what must be a record time, can you give us a brief rundown of the match at Tunnel?
Jamie Hughes: Cheers mate! I honestly can’t believe it! The match at tunnel was a pretty straight forward affair really. I drew a really good peg in 29 on House pool which is one of the very few pegs at Tunnel without an island within pole reach. Because of this I simply fished a line on my top kit with pellets at first and maggots later on and a second line at 14m with hard pellets where I swapped between shallow and on deck. The venue had been fishing a little harder than normal so I hoped that a steady day rotating between these 2 areas would see me catch enough to reach the 120-130lb expected winning weight.
Fortunately my 135lb was enough, although it was extremely close between myself and Ross Harold on peg 33 who possibly had more fish than I did but of a smaller stamp.
SF: Tunnel has been incredibly kind to you on the qualifying front, is it just a venue that suits your style of fishing or do you find it a fairer venue that others which might be dominated by one or two pegs?
JH: Tunnel for me is without doubt my favourite venue when is comes to qualifier venues, simply due to the huge amount of pegs that are capable of winning on the right day. With it being predominantly an F1 venue it also suits my busy style of fishing.I suppose after going there for past 15 years you could also say that I’ve come to know the venue pretty well.
SF: We all know you base your year around qualifiers, everything seems to have come together for you the last couple of years, do you feel that you have been doing anything differently or is it just a case of taking those chances when they come?
JH: Above all else I really believe that the area that I have improved most over the past couple of years is in my decision making during the match. I feel that to do well in these type of matches you need to keep focused and only do things that give you the best possible chance of winning. I never go with the mentality of just hoping to have a good days fishing.
Other than that, drawing well is always important, as is not messing up when you get a chance.
I’ve been lucky to get my chances early this year but there have still been 8 other qualifiers where I have caught very little.
SF: What else is on the radar over the coming months? With a number of new big money events appearing over the last couple of years will you be giving them a go or is it a case of practicing for the finals.
JH: To be honest I don’t actually practice for these big finals anymore as the venues fish so differently under high pressure. I may go once to check that my kit is right but other than that it’s just a case of doing lots of prep and working out on the day which methods will be best.
There’s still a few matches that I want to fish over the summer. First up is the new ‘Fish North’ events that I now have time to fish, also the MAM qualifiers, we are also planning on doing some live matches for Winning Ways so the spare time should allow us to concentrate on making some great videos!
SF: Thanks for that Jamie, massive congratulations and best of luck in all the finals!