Getting to grips with Tunnel - Paul Holland

Saturday was round eight of the Tunnel Barn Farm winter league and I was given peg 25 on the new pool. It’s a peg I drew in round six, so I had an idea of how to approach the peg.

In that match I caught a few dobbing bread early on and then caught a few on pellets across, before ending the match with some on maggots fished short for 51lb. In round seven I drew a good peg (10 on the new pool) and to be totally honest I never did my peg any justice. I tried to catch on maggots when they wanted to eat pellets and I fished in the wrong part of my peg for too long.

Driving home, I was gutted as I know I cost our team points and this week I decided to just set up everything and work out how the fish wanted it on the day.

I started the match off across dobbing but, after 30 minutes, I never put a fish in my net. There wasn't a lot being caught, but the odd fish I had seen caught had been in the deep water down the middle.

First drop at 11m (the bottom of the far shelf) and I caught an F1 on pellets! I was already starting to wish that I’d have come off dobbing sooner! I caught two more then felt it was time to move.

I caught a few skimmers from the next spot before I moved to my last spot and had one F1 here and a few skimmers. I went back to my original spot and caught two more before again changing to the other spots.

I did this until two hours to go, before my first look on my maggot line at 6m. I caught three F1s here with some ide, roach and skimmers in the next hour before going back to my best pellet line. In the last hour I caught six or seven big F1s here to finish the match off. I ended up with 54lb to win my lake.

I was pleased that I didn't make the same mistakes as the last round and just fished how they told me on the day. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of things that I wasn't happy with!

Better news still is Myles won the match (again) and Steve and Andy had also done well, so we won the day (only by one point) and we're still in the lead with two rounds to go.

Many of you who have read my updates on Facebook know how hard it’s been for me trying to get to grips with Tunnel. It really is nothing like how I have ever fished before, but with a lot of help from Andy Bennett, Pemb, Myles, Steve and Stu P, I am starting to find my feet.

I'm still a long, long way off the standard but I'll keep plugging away. I just wish I’d have done it a few years ago!