Fantastic catch of big carp for Brandon Frazer!

Time spent at a syndicate lake in South Africa preparing for a longer session really paid off for Brandon Frazer when it resulted in two new PBs!

Brandon ended up catching two of his target fish – the Big Common at 52lb 2oz and the Linear at 48lb – which both set new PBs, along with two others over 40lb, four 30s and four 20s!

He explained: “Over a couple of weeks I put in quite a bit of time at my syndicate water preparing for a longer session that I had planned. The bed of the lake is covered in weed so I got hold of a rake and cleaned up some areas to make them fishable.

“During those shorter session I managed to catch some good fish, but none of the ones that I was really after – these being the Big Common, Floppy Tail and the Linear, all three of which can top 50lb and have even been close to 60lb, depending on the time of year.

“Those sessions allowed me to figure out various routes which the fish were patrolling and their feeding patterns. I found that they were only feeding during the evenings, so I spent the mornings putting out more bait and clearing the swim of weed, plus the silkweed which was coming up to the surface. I was baiting along the patrol routes to lead them to the areas which I had cleared.

“I was fishing with some Mainline Polaris pop-up toppers which I made and flavoured with Goo, along with a 20mm hookbait, and this was presented on a ‘spinner’ rig, which I tied using a size 4 Krank hook.

“The first evening of my longer session I managed to catch a 42lb common plus a mid-30, and every evening after that I was catching a fish or two, and knew that it was only a matter of time before I had one of my targets.

“One of my mates came and joined me for a night and we spent the evening sat around the fire drinking cappuccinos and discussing the fish that I would love to catch, before hitting the sack.

“A couple of hours later my left-hand rod screamed off and I ran out and hit the rod, and then had that horrible feeling of playing a fish through the massive weedbeds, but sometime later I managed to slip the net under a massive carp. I lifted the net to see which fish it was and there lay the Big Common!

“I went and woke my mate up and we weighed it at 52lb 2oz, I was over-the-moon as it was a new PB common for me. I put it in a retainer until the morning and we got some great snaps, and then I just sat back and couldn’t stop smiling!

“That evening as we were sat by the fire my right-hand rod screamed off and I landed a mid-20 mirror. I was contemplating no re-doing the rod as it wasn’t far off of my other areas and I thought there might still be some fish about, but I couldn’t shake off the feeling that I should get it back out, so I went back out in the boat and dropped it along with some more bait.

“I was pleased that I had done the next morning when the same rod screamed off, and during the fight I can remember the intense head-shakes and heart dropping feeling as the braided main line cut through the weed. Fortunately my mate was there to help clear the loose weed off of my braid during the fight and to net another beast.

“Only once I had it in the cradle did I realise that it was the Linear, and I was so excited that I was shaking. I couldn’t believe that I had just landed two of the fish that I was after this year, and this was a new PB mirror for me at 48lb.

“This was definitely a session of a lifetime where everything went perfectly and it all came together. I went away from the session with even more confidence in the rigs as I’d had a 100% hooked-to-landed ratio despite the conditions I was fishing in.”