MD v England.......The MATCH!!

Dave Spence

MD virtual champion 2020. Golden Pie winner 2018.
Site Supporter
Feb 19, 2017
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the authors imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

Following on from Part 1 which can be found here: MD's versus England invitation match

The Angling world had been set alight and the match between the full England squad and the Maggotdrowners was the news on everyones lips.

Can the Drowners do it? screamed the Angling Times;

Why did he agree to it? asked the Anglers Mail, the latter went on to state that Mark Downes must have an intellect lower than the elastic rating in his match kits for putting Englands reputation at such risk.

They went on to say that England had everything to lose and nothing to gain but; the general consensus was that Peters merry men had little or no chance of beating the England stars, although the majority of the angling fraternity were rooting for the Drowners.

The eve of the match saw the intrepid MDrs gathered once more in Peters kitchen.

Right lads started Peter the practice sessions have gone well and I think we are all in agreement that we fish the maggot at 8 metres and keep the margin in reserve for the last hour with the back-up plan being a pellet feeder tight to the islands.

Why the hell do we need to fish to a plan moaned Breac we are all decent anglers and we should be trusted to get the best from our pegs without being restricted by plans.

Having a plan is good said Peter it contains everything we have learned in practice.

Phoenixicus, who had been staying on site with Neil for the week, then piped up,

I can see that pooling our ideas from practice is a good thing, but, I dont think it is right to say that we must use a particular method on the day. Neil and I had one days practice where a piece of flake at 13 metres was the method; it did not work again for the rest of the week

Peter looked at Red Leader and received a shrug, its your call mate said Dave.

What do the rest of you think he asked.

I think we should sort it out on the day and stuff em growled Wise Owl.

I think we should start on the plan, maggot at 8 metres, but have the autonomy to change as we see fit said Neil; ever the voice of reason.

I agree said Dave, as he had no idea what autonomy meant.

The others all nodded in agreement, Peter knew when he was beaten and finally agreed that they could chop and change at will provided he went on that you let the bank runner know what you are doing so that he can keep the rest of us informed.

Bank runner? asked Wisey.

Yes said Dave, Peter and I have invited one; he should be here by now. He said, glancing at his Mickey Mouse watch.

There was a knock at the door and, although tentative, was enough to send Albert and Winston into a pair of whirling dervishes as they growled and barked at the intruder.

In through the door walked none other than Carpmagic all right lads he asked shyly.

Steve here is going to act as bank runner for us and will also be a reserve if anyone cant fish.

Have you ever fished a match before son asked Breac having no idea who he was talking to.

A few replied Carpmagic.

You heathen exclaimed Neil this is Steve Ringer; he has already fished for England in the feeder team.

We cant fish a ringer, well be disqualified wailed Phoenix in anguish.

Hes not a ringer replied Dave he is an MD site supporter

He just said he is a ringer

His name is ringer


He is not a ringer his name is Ringer

But.. Phoenix was totally confused.

Never mind mate said Neil, patting him consolingly on the back I will explain when we get back to the caravan; I have some information on him in my blog.

I like your blog mate, I have picked up a lot from it said Steve

Neil puffed out his chest, his eyes watering with pride as he muttered a shy thank you and then, glaring accusingly at Wisey said at least some people appreciate my efforts.

If we pull this off tomorrow mate I will subscribe to your *****king blog replied WO.

Oh by the way said Dave I have some good news

He reached into a bag at his feet and pulled out two Maggotdrowner doggie coats, with Winston and Albert emblazoned on the sides.

I have signed them up as bona fide site supporters so they will be allowed to come with us tomorrow.

Hear that pal said Wisey to Albert you can be my bank runner he said rubbing Alberts belly, a strange almost sly expression in his eyes.

Only Breac, who had been staying at the WO household all week noticed that his new BFF was plotting something, and knowing Wisey; it would be something unscrupulous, he couldnt wait.

Right then said Phoenixicus to Carpmagic as youre the bank runner you can start your duties now and make some tea

Peter cringed as he watched Carpmagic put seven brand new tea bags into the mugs, top them up with boiling water and to cap it all he then put the used tea bags into the bin, Peter made a mental note to retrieve them as soon as everyone had gone.

By god lad, thats a decent cuppa said Dave, who was the only one that realised the anguish that Peter was suffering and he couldnt resist rubbing it in.

They spent the next hour discussing tactics and Neil gave a power point talk on shotting patterns and the differences between hollow and solid elastics.

The meeting eventually broke up and Peter told them all to meet at the caf at 7:00 am the next morning. The draws at 8:00 and we fish 10:00 while 3:00 so if we meet at 7:00 we have time for breakfast and last minute discussions before we start. Now everyone go straight home and have an early night.

Time for a couple of nightcaps mate whispered Wisey to Breac.

Great idea mate replied Breac, thankful that, at last he had found someone with appetites that matched his own, in fact him and WO had been on the lash every night since he had arrived a week previously.

The next morning dawned bright and clear, the weather forecast was for a hot bright day, and Lindholme looked like the site of a rock concert, it was packed with supporters and banners were being waved proclaiming

Up the Drowners,

Neil for PM,

Red leader is God

Phee.Poe.fee and Wise Owl bites yer legs.

Reps from all the tackle companies were busily setting up trade stands and several officials from other National teams were seeking the best vantage points to spy on the England stars.

Neil and Phoenixicus were already there but the rest of the Drowners arrived, all together, in Breacs big grey van. A huge cheer went up and the theme from Rocky blared out from speakers which had been placed outside the caf;

Foook me said Wisey I feel like Robbie Williams

Im shyting myself said Phoenix this is the first match I have fished for years, what if I blank.

You wont said Neil just take note of the advice in my blog, fish like I showed you and you will be fine.

They parked up and shuffled towards the caf,

Can I have your autograph please a young lad asked Phoenix.

Certainly he replied and signed with a flourish.

The lad turned to his mates and shouted Ive got it, you can rewrite the banner now its P-H-O-E-N-I-X-I-C-U-S.

How the hell do you pronounce it? asked his mate.

No idea he replied

In the caf Peter was overjoyed to hear that, as the match had attracted so much attention, breakfasts were on the house. Ill have a big breakfast please, two extra sausages and an extra egg please he said gleefully.

The MDrs sat around a table and tucked in, WO and Breac nursing hangovers.

I hope you two arent hung over said Peter

No mate, theres a bug going round our estate replied WO innocently.

Will you be able to fish? asked Carpmagic hopefully.

You just fetch another round of teas son answered Breac and leave the fishing to the grown-ups

CM slunk off to the counter wondering how he had ever become involved in such a circus; he had missed a match at Drayton to be here and was now, seriously questioning his sanity.

Wheres Phoenix asked Dave

Hes doing a tour of the stands to see if he can pick up any freebies answered Neil.

Will you excuse me a minute said Peter as he shot out the door.

A round of booing broke the ensuing silence and the national anthem started up from the speakers, enter the England squad. They marched into the caf, in matching Drennan jackets, Mark Downes at the head, closely followed by a chap doing an impression of Mr T with four gold medals hanging round his neck.

Whos the ponce with the necklaces? asked Breac.

Alan Scothorne replied Neil former world champion.

Hes just asked for Horlicks at the counter said Dave.

Typical moaned Carpmagic I cant get a place and they let in a geriatric, living on past reputation; they will be bringing Bob Nudd back next he added bitterly.

Peter and Phoenix returned triumphantly, loaded down with armfuls of goody bags containing all the poo that the tackle companies couldnt shift.

Wheres my sausage wailed Peter there was a full sausage on my plate when I left

Under the table Albert and Winston chewed happily.

I swear I will shoot that dog said Peter; when he realised what had happened.

You go anywhere near Albert, your gert will have new earrings and you will have a very high voice snarled Wisey.

Come on lads. Lets keep it friendly, we are all on the same team said Dave

Who is that kid sat with them? asked Breac

Callum Dicks said Dave

Callum Dick! snorted Wisey I bet his middle name is The

Everyone howled with laughter, Callum shifted uncomfortably under their derision,

I dont know if I want to fish Mr Downes he murmured shakily.

Dont worry Cal, Ill look after you said Des Shipp staring threateningly at Wise Owl.

What you staring at you fat Womble snarled Wisey

The crowd, sensing blood, started chanting Dezzy is a womble, Dezzy is a womble and the banner proclaiming Wise Owl bites yer legs was waved enthusiastically

The two captains parted their respective team members and order was restored,

dont be an idiot Des said Downsey Peter Drennan is outside, if you start beating up the opposition he may well withdraw his sponsorship

The mood in the England camp was sombre; they had no need to talk tactics as they were fishing to a detailed plan masterminded by Downesy, and they were usually treated like heros when they turned up to a match. A partisan crowd was alien to them and they were now thoroughly rattled.

Their manager was also very despondent; he was missing his sidekick the other Mark and the thought of a week away, to take his team to the next world championships without him, filled him with dread. He wondered how he would get through the long lonely nights without a cuddle from his deputy.

The two teams went out to the draw which was a simple affair, the two captains tossing a coin with the winner choosing odds or evens. The teams themselves would decide who fished on each numbered peg.

Well have evens said Peter, smugly, after the coin landed on heads.

Bonsai had been pegged so that there was a minimum of 20 metres between platforms and it had been agreed that the bank to the left of each angler was their margin.

After a brief chat between Peter and Mark it was agreed that, in the interests of peace, it would be better to put Wisey and Des as far apart as possible the pegging was, therefore, as follows:-

Peg 1 Callum Dicks
Peg 2 Wise Owl
Peg 3 Sean Ashby
Peg 4 Peter
Peg 5 Will Raison
Peg 6 Phoenixicus
Peg 7 Alan Scothorne
Peg 8 Neil of the Nene
Peg 9 Steve Hemingray
Peg 10 Breac
Peg 11 Des Shipp
Peg 12 Red Leader

Everyone tackled up amid an air of great expectancy and Carpmagic was kept really busy running back and forth to the caf fetching cups of tea and coffee; which he was paying for out of his own pocket as Red Leader had told him that he could claim it back at the end of the match.

The whistle sounded and the long awaited match of the century was underway. The England team all started by cupping a secret mix of pellets halfway down their margin swims, their precision was so consistent it such it looked like a synchronised angling contest.
On peg 2 WO formed a huge ball of solid white crumb and heaved it into his right hand margin.

Oy said Callum on peg 1 thats my margin

What do you mean? asked Wisey in all innocence.

Youre baiting the wrong side wailed the youngster

Sorry son grinned Wisey, Im bisexual, so I cant tell my left from my right, but no problem I will just go down the other side suiting action to the words he then gently cupped half a pot of micros into his margin swim. Callum just stared in dismay at his ruined margin and wondered if fishing for his country was all it was cracked up to be.

On peg 8 Neil was in seventh heaven, not only was he between two gentlemen he had been given a new lease of life by Phoenixicus. During practice he had been persuaded by Phoenix to try some glasses; it had been a revelation and he was able to finally see his dotted float with amazing clarity. He was now the proud owner of blue tinted contact lenses which, he thought, made him look even more like Brad Pitt and he had already posted a lengthy article, on his blog, about the importance of eyesight in angling.

Dave, however, on peg 12 was having a torrid time and Des Shipp was making him look silly as he netted f1 after f1.

You do know there is a 16 metre limit on pole length here Dave questioned.

Yeah, I do, Im not stupid said Des, effortlessly holding about 23 metres of pole in his left hand whilst opening a tin of corn by squashing it in the crook of his right arm. This is a 14.6 metre pole he clarified.

Dave who was straining to hold 16 metres in both hands, and still falling pitifully short of the same island that Des was fishing against, thought discretion was the better part of valour and said oh sorry, it just looks longer

Thats what your missus told me laughed Des as he netted another f1 without even taking his eyes off Dave.

Dave reached for the Kleenex inside his coat; dabbed his eyes and blowing his nose loudly, resigned himself to a battering.

Suddenly a terrible howling echoed round the complex, all the ducks took to the air at the same time and the rats bolted to their holes.

Do you wanna be in my gang, my gang, my gang, do you wanna be in my gang warbled Wisey

Oh yeah chorused Breac from 8 pegs away.

Do we really need this moaned Sean.

Hes just seen the Sky TV cameras explained Peter , he thinks Simon Cowell might be watching.

Wisey was just getting into his stride however and, still singing; he dropped out his todger and peed in a high arc straight into the lake. Oy Ashby he shouted have you seen my old man?

An hour into the match and it was clear that the MDrs, although putting in a valiant effort, were hopelessly outclassed and it was looking like a drubbing was on the cards.

Albert, resplendent in his new green coat, jumped up as his master beckoned him over and he sat patiently at Wise Owls side whilst he unhooked yet another f1. WO whispered into Alberts ear, the dog wagged his tail in excitement and shot off round the lake.

He returned less than two minutes later, Des Shipps bait bucket firmly in his jaws and Des himself in hot pursuit, penknife in hand, muttering that he was going to skin the mangy mutt.

Dropping the bucket at the side of his master Albert stood there with a huge grin on his face as Des arrived, puffing and panting, at peg 2.

The sky TV crew had a field day and had managed to film the whole incident, including Albert crawling, like a commando, through the grass behind peg 11.

Bad dog said Wisey, enthusiastically rubbing Alberts belly and giving him and Winston, who had joined them, a doggy choc drop.

Youre dog just nicked my bait tin snarled Des.

Wisey looked at him coldly sorry about that he said calmly.

Youre very calm considering Ive got a knife said Des in his best Dirty Harry voice.

Thats not a knife said Wisey his little legs swinging about 6 inches above the footplate of his box; the sun glinted on the razor sharp machete that he pulled out of his pocket. This is a knife he said as he stroked it absently against the stubble on his chin.

Des deflated like a pricked balloon, keep him under control he snapped as he turned to go.

Hang on mate said Wisey we havent got off to the best start, let bygones be bygones? he questioned holding out his hand.

Des was, underneath the bluster, actually a nice guy and he willingly shook hands.

What do you think of this mate? Asked WO, holding up a ball of paste its my normal mix but Breac brought a special additive down from Scotland and I think it has spoiled it.

Des took the paste and, breaking a piece off he held it to his nose, theres a lot of fishmeal in there he exclaimed reminds me of a girl I used to know. Then, breaking a piece off he slowly chewed and swallowed yeah definitely like my courting days he exclaimed with a grin.

Behind the two anglers Winston and Albert high fived with their paws; mission accomplished.

Des made his way back to his peg, a strange euphoria spreading through him and passing peg 8 he said love the blog Neil, keep posting mate. Neil was so shocked he missed his net with an f1 he had just unhooked.

By the time Des got to peg 11 he was chuckling away to himself and thinking what a splendid fellow Dave was on the next peg, even when he stood on the butt section of his pole, the splintering carbon just seemed like the funniest sound in the world and he cracked up.

Meanwhile on peg 10 all the TV cameras were on Breac who had assembled a fly rod and was fishing a floating caster tight to the island twenty metres away. Ten minutes later, pandemonium reigned as, just as he was netting his fourth lump Mark Downes came up with the bailiff.

You cant fly fish, its against the rules he said.

Why? answered Breac.

Its classed as lure fishing and its a danger to the spectators replied the bailiff.

Breac reluctantly took down the gear and picked his pole back up.

You dont like anyone showing you up do you he said scathingly to Downsey.

Before a row could develop their attention was caught by a blood curdling scream from Sean on peg 3, hurrying over Mark found his star feeder angler almost in tears and holding his neck.

What happened he asked

Stung by a wasp said Wisey who had walked over to his peg.

Peter on peg 4 grinned to himself, he knew what had happened and he now also knew the reason for Wiseys catapult practice. The manager of the French squad, who was watching intently, had videoed the whole thing and was already planning to issue Black Widows to all of his squad.

There are loads of wasps around here mate said Wisey you have probably set up near their nest.

Sean looked nervously around his peg do you think so he stammered.

Dont worry mate, if you keep still they wont bother you

Sean turned back to his fishing but his nerves were shot and he was spending more time looking for wasps than he was spending on his float.

Phoenixicus and Neil on pegs 6 and 8 respectively had managed to get Alan Scothorne and Will Raison reminiscing about how it used to be, fishing for England in the old days, so engrossed were they that they failed to realise that, both Neil and Phoenix were catching them.

Des Shipp meanwhile was making his way, still chuckling, back to WO peg. Can I try some of your paste man he laughed Ive got some big lumps down the side.
Certainly replied WO with a grin and he passed him the full, Jaffa sized, ball
Thats so cool man smiled Des I love you man and bending forward he gave WO a peck on the cheek. Next second a furious ball of teeth and fur had attached themselves to his leg as Albert went in for the kill, no one kissed his master except him. He shook his head as his teeth went through Dess trousers and into the flesh beneath, Des just laughed

Good boy, protecting your master eh he smiled, as he extricated his leg from Alberts fangs.

On the way back to his peg he popped into the caf, emerging a few minutes later with a bin liner full of nuts, scratchings, crisps and chocolate. Fishing was forgotten as he proceeded to munch his way through them, interspersed with bits of paste.

Dave realised that something had happened and he decided to wipe his eyes, grow a pair and start fishing to his potential.

Despite all of the incidents and five of the England squad not fishing to their best; with two hours to go it still looked like it was going to be an England victory.

The crowd were getting restless, the upset they had been hoping for now seemed unlikely and they prayed for a miracle.

A car pulled into the car park, a tall rangy man got out and lifted a large sack, which he hefted on to his shoulder, the crowd parted like the red sea before Moses and through them strode none other than Fishplate42, aka Ralph. He reached the boundary tape and shouted Steve Ringer over;

Share this between them and tell them to ball it all in he passed over the big sack containing his own 2 dog groundbait.

Steve checked with Peter who, as it was do or die time, agreed to the plan. The groundbait was quickly shared out and the cannonade started, the England squad looked on helplessly as the barrage lifted the water level about a foot.

Their carefully nurtured swims dried up as the extraordinary pulling power of the groundbait came into effect. Almost immediately every, other, peg came alive and the Drowners were bagging for the last hour whilst the England stars stayed fishless; it was going to be so close.

The whistle sounded and the gossip ran like wildfire through the crowd some said Des had beaten Dave, others said that Des had been fishless for the last 3 hours etc etc.

The scales finished their tour and the anglers stood in two small groups, WO and Breac singing I would walk 500 miles at the tops of their voices and Des singing softly, in his best Bob Marley accent, No winning no cry, as they waited for the result.

Callum on peg 1 had never really recovered from his altercation with WO and had fished a poor match.

Neil and Phoenix had both had belters, as had Steve Hemingray for England, Peter had fished a quite match and had caught steadily throughout, whilst Dave had enjoyed a brilliant last hour and a half.

Ten minutes later, Keith Arthur made the announcement:-

Ladies and gentleman the weights have been totalled, verified and are as follows

Gerron wi it ya fooking poof yelled WO.

As I was saying repeated Keith, the results are:-

Drennan Team England 485lb 12oz

Maggotdrowners select 497lb 11oz

A huge cheer went up; theyd defied the odds and beaten one of the best teams in the world.

Fishplate42 and the rest of the team were hoisted on shoulders and ceremoniously carried around the lake, headed by Rodring who, sporting a tartan dicky bow, was twirling his Tam O Shanter and throwing it up in the air like a cheer leaders baton. Arriving at the caf bank all of the team were pitched into the water where the victory jigs continued, Peter took full advantage by feeling around the margins of the island and was rewarded by finding two feeders which he pocketed gratefully.

Whilst all this was going on the defeated team were despondently throwing their gear into the team bus, as the bus pulled out Peter Drennans words echoed across the car park

Bloody shambles, find another sponsor He turned around and came face to face with a tall handsome stranger.

Hello my name is Git; Pompous Git; I am the manager of the Drowners and I think I could help you find a much more rewarding avenue for your sponsorship; step into my office. Taking Peter by the arm Pompous led him back into the Caf.


The Controller
Aug 28, 2016
fantastic, well done and thank you very much.

Dave Spence for MD of ther Year!


Red Leader
Staff member
Site Supporter
Aug 8, 2001
Awesome, I knew we could do it [^] [:T]

Excellent read Dave [:D]


Regular member
Site Supporter
Dec 28, 2014
Excellent. They say every good writer needs a vivid imagination and you've got it in spades mate. Now waiting for your first book, I'm wondering what the title will be.. [:D] [:T]


Regular member
Site Supporter
Feb 25, 2016
Entertaining read, Thank you.[:T]....Mr Scotthorne has won FIVE world Individual freshwater world championships![:p][:D][:T]

david white

Regular member
Site Supporter
Jan 6, 2011
Dave, I worry for the safety of your nearest and dearest, anyone who knows you and your neighbours. You certainly have a varied and vivid imagination God only knows how much cheese you must eat every night to conjure up a story line that

10/10 fella [:T]


Regular member
Site Supporter
Nov 6, 2013
39 users viewing this... that tells a story! [:eek:)]
I do wonder how long that took to write up... well done Dave! [:T]


Red Leader
Staff member
Site Supporter
Aug 8, 2001
I've tagged Neil Grantham in asking him to set a date [:D]


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Probably one of my proudest moments, couldn't have managed it without the team and all our supporters.[:D]

Great read Dave.[:T]


Regular member
Sep 23, 2015
Great read Dave spotted it ealier but saved reading it until now, i can go to sleep with a smile for a change. Have you met the wife!!


Regular member
Site Supporter
May 27, 2010
A fantastic tale Dave and a big hand to Ralph for coming up with the goods...[:T]

Grappenall 57

Regular member
Sep 2, 2013
Absolutely magnificent....result for the MDs team despite a. flyfishing, b. having dogs on the bank c. use of a weird paste and d. the shocking decision to have that young whipper snapper Carpmajic as bankrunner, brew maker and possible emergency sub (instead of Grappenall 57!). Superb deployment of the two dog night secret groundbait too!