Arriving at Yateley’s Sandhurst a few hours before the draw for the British carp cup southwest first qualifier we went about scouting the water. With only a couple of anglers fishing the night before there wasn't much to go on. Me and Pete stumbled across the last angler on the lake in second pipes swim. We were greeted with a sling floating in the margin. Hanging around while the cameras where set we were blown away when the angler lifted a stunning 44lbs common up out of the sling for the cameras! After the excitement settled and a few handshakes where exchanged we found out a couple of other fish where banked alongside this common on his session. With no other fish coming out from around the lake and no other anglers entering the competition on the lake yet we decided to keep the capture quiet and prayed for an early draw. As luck would have it mine and peters name came out third on the draw. With neither of the other two pairs selecting second pipes it was safe to say where we were heading. Finding spots at 50 yards with the marker between some scattered weed left of the swim where I'd seen fish showing just off the back was my starting point. Two rods on the spot and a scattering of bait I was confident going into the first night.
Come the morning waking to motionless rods and knowing that night the lads in pipes next door had bagged one, disappointment was clear. I had seen some fish early morning moving directly in front the swim just back from the island. The marker set up came back out for a quick investigation and landing with a crunch I had a new spot 52 yards towards a white V shaped tree, just off to the left. Fishing stiff-hinges I was sure I could get an even better presentation with the water being crystal clear with patches of weed starting to grow, so I made a few changes. Reeling the rods in I set both rods up for naked Chods. Clipping up and casting to the spots with around 4-5 Spombs of bait over the top, minimal disturbance and complete rig presentation I was confident going into the second night. Around 10pm my right-hand rode cried out a couple beeps. I ran to my rods and found the bobbin pulled up tight. I reeled in and hit into a solid weight, looking at the rod tip motionless...... wound down and cranked again........ rod tip still motionless...... wound down for the third time and BANG! a huge head shake. IM IN! after a short fight due to weed covering her view she slipped over the net cord instantly knowing it was Nigel's fish and a possible 40! The phone call was made to Mick to come and weigh her. Tipping the scales at 40lbs 4oz she put us first on the leader board and was enough to see me and Pete claim first place in the qualifier.