The MD'rs Face the Past

Dave Spence

MD virtual champion 2020. Golden Pie winner 2018.
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Feb 19, 2017
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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

Start to wind it up Piers, 2 minutes to go; try to get him to say something controversial.

Piers Morgan was sat opposite Pompous Git doing an interview for his Life Stories programme and the time had flown by so fast that he was surprised when the voice in his earpiece had told him to start winding up.

Within the first 5 minutes Piers had realised that he was faced with an intellect far superior to his own and he had, therefore, deviated from his pre-formed questions; which had been designed to provoke PG into controversy. As a consequence they had chatted away for the best part of an hour like two mates in a pub and the viewers were already jamming the switchboard with compliments about the entertainment value of the programme.

One final question said Piers Just how good are the Drowners?

PG resplendent in a Harris Tweed 3 piece suit and his trademark fedora looked smugly down his patrician nose and replied,

My dear Piers there has never been a team like them and there is certainly no team in England, at the moment, that would even get close to them

Pompous Git, manager of the Drennan Drowners; thank you very much

My pleasure replied PG shaking the outstretched hand of the presenter.

And, thats a wrap shouted the producer great show Piers

Peter Drennan walked on the set and patted PG on the back

Well done Pomp; that should increase tackle sales

Peter was very pleased with the deal he had with the Drowners, the cost of supplying equipment, match and bait fees and the salaries of Peter and Neil of the Nene, the two fully sponsored members of the squad, was peanuts compared to the increase in revenue that the Drowners drew in.

Come along then Peter, I told Piers that you were taking us both to dinner and then on to Stringfellows

Peter sighed and, reluctantly acquiesced, it was not the cost of the evening that worried him; it was the problem of keeping up with PG. He knew that once he took his hat off in the club they would be inundated with female companionship and Pomp would, invariably, invite at least a dozen of them back to his hotel suite for a party. All Peter wanted to do was soak his feet in a bowl of hot water and have a mug of Horlicks before he went to bed.

Over in Yorkshire a certain ageing match angler sat looking at the wooden box that was smashed and smoking in the corner of his living room. Coils of wire and smoking valves could be clearly seen with the remains of the Theakstons Old Peculier bottle lodged firmly inside; the label on the front of the box, which read Bush 24 inch, swung lazily in the haze like a metronome counting down the seconds before his lass burst in from the kitchen.

You stupid gobshyte, tha can buy me anotha tellie afore coronation street tomorra. Wot the ell ya playing at anyroad, hurlint bottle at telly?

Sorry Lass said Fatha ahl get thee another one tomorra

Aye, thou will and I want one of them clever uns, wherest thou dont ave to gerrup to turn over

All reet said Dennis, knowing when he was beat. But twas that arrogant git saying that they were unbeatable that made me do it.
The shrill ring of the telephone interrupted the conversation and he picked it up gratefully; the last thing he wanted was a full blown row with his lass.

Is that thee Fatha? the caller asked.

Aye

Its Dick

Ayup owd lad, hows thee doing?

Over in another part of Yorkshire Dick sat watching the smoking remnants of his television, with a smashed bottle of Newcastle Brown sticking out of the screen.

Ive just watched Piers Morgan and it made me put telly through he admitted.

Me an all answered Dennis

Nip round int morning Ive an idea

Okay replied Dennis But Ill have to get our lass a new box first, so tha will have to wait till Ive been to Cash Convertors

Righto said Dick and hung up.

Fatha cleared up the mess and made his way up the stairs to try and make peace with the missus.

Back in London, Peter had been correct and the party in PGs suite was in full swing, about a dozen of the waitresses from Stringfellows, in various stages of undress, were cavorting happily.

Are you really a millionaire one young lady, wearing Pomps fedora and nothing else, asked Peter Drennan.

I certainly am love Peter replied, wrapping his arm around her waist; all thoughts of Horlicks and foot soaks evaporating like the bubbles in his champagne glass.

The door suddenly burst open and, fresh from recording an episode of Question of Sport, Wise Owl burst through with an American tennis star named Serena, who had been a fellow contestant, on his arm. On his other arm was his favourite chaser, who he had bumped into whilst leaving the recording studio. WO grabbed four bottles of champagne and two tubs of strawberries before letting himself into Pomps sleeping quarters, the door slammed behind him, only to be opened twenty seconds later,

how long is this room booked for Pomp? he shouted, please let it be for more than one night

It is booked for the entire week my dear boy replied Pomp fill your boots lad

WO grinned happily, hung a do not disturb sign on the door and resigned himself to being tazered when he got back up north.

The next day Fatha was feeling very pleased with himself, he had got a great deal on a 28 flat screen TV and his lass had totally forgiven him; several times. He made a mental note to pick up some more starch pills from the docs on his way home.

Whats on thee mind Dick he asked, easing himself onto one of the upturned milk crates that served as stools in Dicks kitchen.

I want us to put a team together to smash the Drowners

Who hast thou got in mind?

All the owd lads replied Dick big K, Heapsy, Kenny, Max, Deany and Thommo. We take the Drowners away from commercials and stage the match on a venue that still requires watercraft and skill

Are they still fishing?

Its thou job to find out; see if you can get in touch and talk them in to it. Ill find us a venue

All reet said Fatha Ill see what I can do

Good lad replied Dick lets show that Pompous Git how real anglers perform

The two men shook hands and Dennis made his way home, via the medical practice, hoping his lass might still be grateful.

He got home to find her glued to a catch up episode of Coronation Street,

cmere you, she purred seductively

5 minutes later she was back to the new telly and Fatha, with a satisfied smirk on his face, started making phone calls.

It was surprisingly easy to get the old stars to come out of retirement and fish against the Drowners; like the majority of retired champions, they all wondered if they could do it; just one more time. All of them had seen, and been incensed by, PGs interview and they hadnt any hesitation in accepting the call to arms.

A few days later our intrepid team were, once again, assembled round Peters kitchen table.
Peter Drennan set the ball rolling,

right lads we have had another challenge extended.

Not fooking England again said WO

No replied PD Dick Clegg and Dennis White have put a team together

The room fell silent, Dick and Dennis were still much respected anglers and the Drowners knew that they would be up against it. Peter got up and poured everyone a scotch,

any idea of the team he asked.

Not yet interjected Pomp but Dick told me to expect a phone call tonight.

Right on cue the phone rang, Peter flicked the switch to speaker phone and Dicks voice filled the room,

all reet lads? he asked

There was a chorus of greetings from the Drowners and Dick got straight to the point.

I have a team that I think will smash the Drowners and make you look like the keen amateurs that you are

My good man stated PG as I told Piers Morgan; there is no team in the country that could take us at the moment

We pick the venue?

Certainly replied PG imperiously

What about a side bet? asked Dick or are thee not as confident as thou appear

What sort of bet? asked Red Leader

Each man has a side bet with the adjacent angler

How much? asked Peter nervously, he might be fully sponsored but he didnt like to squander his cash.

1000 per man said Dick as calmly as if he was arranging a 1 on the side.

Phoenixicus mouth fell open as he stared at the telephone and the orange juice in his glass dripped onto the kitchen floor. Phoenix and Carpmagic were both on soft drinks due to the antibiotics they were taking to cure the infection they had picked up in Russia. Phoenix had told his spouse that he had been nobbled with Novichok and that she would, therefore, have to take the pills as well. CM had no such admissions to make and he had, since returning from Russia, infected half the lasses in his home town.

Who is in your team mate? asked Carpmagic

I dont see any harm in telling thee said Dick our team is:-
Kevin Ashurst
Ian Heaps
Ken Giles
Max Winters
John Dean
Dave Thomas

There was a stunned silence broken by Grappenall 57

Are they still with us? he asked

PD then piped up We accept the bet Dick; make sure you bring cash to the match?

You will need it added Pompous, pompously

Where are we fishing Mr Clegg asked Neil of the Nene

The Trent Embankment in Nottingham was the chilling reply, in three weeks time.

The phone went dead and pandemonium ensued,

A fooking river, snapped WO we dont know owt about river fishing

Its good on the Trent said Red Leader I had a few good uns last year

You fished a whole week end wailed Phoenix there are only 5 hours in a match

How much gasped Peter

They are all superstars, well get hammered howled GP57

PG took control and brought his team together

Look at it logically he said, helping himself to another scotch; Peter cringed as old habits resurfaced

Are you going to bring a bottle to the next meeting he asked hopefully.

They are all past their best, so providing we practice and come up with a plan, we should be OK PG replied, deliberately avoiding Peters question.

I will cover the side bets said PD.

I love you sang Peter happily.

Where is the venue asked GP57

Just up from the Forest ground replied WO

Didnt your lot try to burn that down? asked RL

Fook all to do with me said WO it might have been my Dad though he admitted.

The meeting broke up with the instruction to read up as much as they could on the venue.

News of the match broke the next day and the angling press had a field day, old articles were dusted off and re-ran, tackle companies launched ranges of stick floats, centre pins, and bait aprons in anticipation of demand.

Drowners toughest challenge yet stated the AT

STD is the retro stars mantra led the Anglers Mail.

This article made great play on the comment, by Dick, that his team would; Smash The Drowners and the paper had given away T shirts with STD emblazoned across the front.

Whilst this entire furore was going on, in deepest Stafford, Trogg eased himself into his comfortable armchair, opened a large hardback book and sighing contentedly, he settled down to read. At his feet Tank was struggling with the latest copy of Viz, his lips mouthed the words as he read about the fat slags exploits and he wondered why he had never met a pair of girls like that at the club. Dian came in from the kitchen and placing a cup of coffee by the side of her husband she leaned over and kissed him affectionately on the cheek.

Thanks love he murmured absentmindedly, being totally engrossed in the book.

The next second Dian lashed out and Trogg groaned as his whole left shoulder exploded in pain and his arm went completely dead from the wrist up.

What the hell was that for he said glaring at his wife,

Youre reading porn, she screamed

Lets have a look Dad said Tank hopefully.

I am not reading porn argued Trogg

Dont lie to me replied Dian Ive just seen the title of that chapter; Mortimers Hole

You bloody bimbo said Trogg, and then squealed again as she hit his right shoulder.

Mortimers Hole is a famous escape tunnel in Nottingham Castle and; as we are fishing there in a fortnight, I thought I would treat us all to a hotel on the Saturday night so we could go and see it on the Sunday

Sorry I hit you darling whispered Dian apologetically does it hurt.

No lied Trogg but what did you hit me with?

Dian raised her arm so that he could inspect the knuckle duster wrapped around her right fist.

Its Kevlar she explained not as damaging as Brass but much lighter so that you dont lose your speed

Where did you get it from asked her husband, admiring the craftsmanship.

Tank bought it for me on mothers day

Good call son said Trogg approvingly.

Upstairs BLanna laid on her bed busily engaged in a face-book conversation, what she was hearing made her mouth tighten in anger and her eyes glittered dangerously. Ending the conversation, she switched off her phone and sat thinking.

Aha, and shiver me timbers said the voice of Captain Jack Sparrow you need a plan.

Your plan needs to be cunning and brutal; use your feminine wiles whispered Bellatrix Lestrang huskily.

Fook em up proper Gal screamed Ozzy

BLanna grinned to herself as she listened to the three voices in her head and she made her way downstairs to see why mum was beating up Dad; again!

Not a lot to see Peter stated PG

No replied Peter nothing topping, no features and not a soul fishing

Peter and Pomp were doing a recce on the venue for the match and they were rapidly thinking that they may have wasted their time as they stood on Trent Bridge looking down at the river.

Where is it being pegged from asked Pomp.

That bridge upstream is the Brittania suspension bridge; peg 1 is twenty yard upstream of it replied Peter.

Lets have a wander

The two men strolled along the embankment in the bright Friday afternoon sunshine and agreed that the, long running, claim that Nottingham had the prettiest girls seemed to be true. Young secretaries were taking their lunch in the warm weather, business skirts being hoisted up to catch the rays and blouses loosened, exposing some delightful cleavage; PG was tempted to remove his Fedora but decided against it, he did not want to cause a scene. Reaching the suspension bridge, Peters eyes lit up as he saw an angler in the distance,

Cmon he said lets go and have a chat

What replied PG, tearing his gaze away from a delightful young lady who was giving him the eye and positively salivating at the sight of the handsome man in the lightweight, linen suit and Fedora.

Theres someone fishing said Peter please pay attention Pomp

Sorry, I just cant resist a well turned calf

They made their way towards the young man who was staring at a quiver tip pointing skywards; as they approached they saw the chap strike and his rod take on a healthy bend. By the time they reached him he was just slipping the net under a skimmer of about a pound.

Had many? questioned Peter

A few he replied

The chap re-baited and cast, his feeder flew right across the river and landed tight up against a barge that was moored on the far bank.

By god lad that was a cast and a half said PG admiringly.

Thank you said the chap if you dont get right to the barge you dont get a bite

His tip wrapped round again and a few minutes later a real bream of about 4lbs was added to the keep net. The feeder was, once again cast, effortlessly, to the far side of the river.

You must be casting 100 yards said Peter

About 80, I think replied the chap

What weight is the feeder asked PG;

he realised that this could be the method they adopted in a fortnights time and he wanted as much information as he could glean.

The chap, being from Nottingham, was obviously a salt of the earth type as are all Nottingham anglers and he pulled in his tackle to show them.The feeder itself was what attracted Peters attention; it was quite long, low diameter and had fins glued on the end making it resemble a small spod. The chap explained that he made these feeders himself as commercially available ones didnt enable him to cast the distance required.

Are the bream along the whole length he asked.

No mate, only under the barge

PG got up, walked back to the bridge, and proceeded to pace out the distance to the angler.

I reckon that the barge will be accessible to pegs 3 or 4 he explained to Peter we need to ensure that the right man is on it

You got a match on here? asked the chap

Yes mate replied peter Im the captain of the Drennan Drowners".

Im a big fan the chap said delightedly and shook hands with them both.

Now, he continued if this peg is included, it will be the winner; provided that whoever is on it can cast accurately. The rest of the stretch is just bits, with the odd decent roach

So what you are saying, is that if we can get a decent feeder man on here and get a few backing weights, we shouldnt have any problems said PG

Exactly, this peg is worth 30lbs, a decent stick angler, on the rest of the stretch, could probably manage 8 10lbs was the reply

Could I get a picture of your feeder? asked Peter hopefully.

No chance was the emphatic reply, reaching into his side drawer the chap produced another, identical feeder;

you can have one.

Thank you said Peter pocketing it delightedly.

True gent added PG.

They said their goodbyes and made their way back towards Trent Bridge.

I saw a Hooters bar on the way in to the city said Pomp; lets have a pint

Peter, groaning inwardly, followed dejectedly, noticing how there was an added spring to the step of his manager and how his hand kept reaching towards his Fedora; obviously, subconsciously practicing the flourish with which he would remove it in front of the Hooters girls.

A few days later, following an instruction from Pomp, all of the Drowners assembled on a park near to Peters house.

What the fook are we doing here? said WO

Special practice said Peter; handing the reel of a 100 yard tape to him. Measure out 80 yards please

WO trotted off and stopped at the prescribed 80 yards, PG then laid out a piece of red plastic sheet, a yard wide and 4 yards long.When they got back to the rest of the team, Peter had already assembled a feeder rod and he asked Pomp for the modified feeder that the he had been given. Pomp had pocketed the feeder and had been rather mysterious about its whereabouts over the last couple of days.

Right lads said Peter whos first

I take it that you want us to cast past the marker said Phoenix

No, I want you to land the feeder on it replied Peter.

Neil had first chuck but landed, woefully short dont get much practice at this sort of thing nowadays he said ruefully.

The rest of the team had their goes, with varying levels of failure. Carpmagic, like Neil, fell short as did WO, GP57 and Peter himself, Phoenixicus managed the distance but could not achieve the accuracy and the feeder landed well to the left of the target. Red Leader stepped up; he swung the rod back and cast in one fluid motion, the feeder flew in a high arc and landed, dead centre, on the red target.

Bout time yer found summat yer could do laughed Wisey

That was a fluke said Phoenix

Dave retrieved the feeder and recast, once again, dead centre. He repeated the process a further 5 times and eventually Phoenixicus had to admit that RL had beaten him.

Okay lads, back to the house and we will explain said Peter I think the missus has done us a breakfast

Sausages growled Albert to Winston and both dogs shot off towards the waiting cars.

Back at the house, whilst Maria toiled in the kitchen, Peter and Pomp explained what had happened during their visit to Nottingham. After they had listened carefully to the plan PG asked if there were any questions.

Why did you go to fooking Hooters without me wailed WO, all memories of the Tazering he had received from their Gert, after his exploits in London, fading rapidly.

Questions about the match said Peter, patiently
.
What if I lose that feeder? asked RL I dont have a spare

Before Peter could reply the door opened and in walked two men; they were dressed in dark business suits, black overcoats draped over their shoulders, black hats and, most disconcertingly, both carried Violin cases.

WO, never being one to see danger shouted Oh fook its Scarface

Dont call me Scarface; the names Soprano, the taller of the two men said, ominously.

Everyone burst out laughing as they recognised none other than Soprano and Genesis.

Bloody hell said RL you had me fooled there lads

Didnt fool me said Phoenixicus crawling out from under the table.

The reverie was cut short by Maria bringing in a veritable banquet of eggs, bacon, sausage, black pudding, beans, tomatoes, mushrooms and fried bread.

If you want anything else, just give me a shout she said as she slid two huge bowls of sausages under the table for the boys.

Winston jumped up lovingly and covered her face in doggy saliva from a huge slobbering kiss. Albert due to his shorter stature licked her ankles appreciatively. The Drowners helped themselves and sat down to eat, the latter being accomplished very awkwardly by Genesis who seemed to be permanently sore from countless examinations at the hands of a consultant, who he was sure, was a descendant of Lev Yashin.

After breakfast Soprano and Genesis opened up their Violin cases; one contained replicas of the feeder in varying weights; peter realised then, that PG had given the original to Genesis to see if he could copy it. The other case contained several sets of beautiful hand-made floats; these floats were of a curious design and instantly caught the attention of Neil.

Ive never seen anything like these he said

They are my own design said Genesis, proudly. In effect, you have a stick float with a hollow bristle

Why is the bristle not straight asked Phoenixicus, holding up the float to show that the bristle was offset at about 30 degrees.

The bristle is to increase sensitivity explained Genesis what you have is the versatility of a stick and the sensitivity of a pole float. When you fish a stick, the accepted way is that you hold back the float, the off-set bristle means that when you are holding back, the bristle stands straight in the water and aids visibility.

All the Drowners agreed that the idea of the float was pure genius and they thanked Genesis profusely.

Ill waive the rent on a stand if you want to set one up on the day said Peter Drennan generously.

Carpmagic, who had been very quiet and was secretly very disappointed with his performance at the casting practice, stated calmly;

I think I had better run the bank, Im not really a stick man and I dont want to let you down

Peter was relieved at this as it meant that he didnt have to drop the lad.

Okay he replied.

Do you fancy fishing Soprano? asked GP57 Im more of a canal man and; to be honest I would like to watch the old stars in action again

Wow said Soprano a huge grin spreading over his face I didnt see that coming, I would be honoured

Youre in then lad said PD I will get a set of tackle delivered

I feel like I have won the lottery

Yeah but the downside is, you have to put with WO laughed GP57

Ow, he exclaimed as Alberts teeth sank into his leg gerrim off he howled.

Albert, at a snap of Wiseys fingers let go and deftly caught the sausage that his master nicked off Peters plate and threw to him, he bit it in half and left a piece for Winston; both dogs quietened down and munched happily.

Practice, the following week, went well; the new floats were superb and all of the team were consistently putting double figures on the scales after five hours. Only Dave was not fishing to plan; Pomp had decided that they keep the feeder tactic under wraps in case word got out; it was a gamble but PG thought it a risk worth taking. He was right as, over on the far bank Dick and Dennis were huddled under a camouflage net with binoculars trained on the Drowners.

Theyre banking everything ont stick said Fatha

I think thee are reet, theyll never beat our lads ont float, we ought to up side bet laughed Dick.

The morning of the match dawned and in the Trogg household BLanna was getting ready for the day ahead, after several conversations with Helena, Johnny and Ozzy, she had formulated her plan. It was a good plan, she was certain that it would work and she would be able to protect her Dad.

She dressed in a pair of camouflaged trousers, tucked in to a pair of high Doc martens; unwrapping a parcel she put on the new T shirt it contained, looked in the mirror and was very pleased with the logo emblazoned on the front

Staffordshire Bone Hard China made by Trogg

Around her waist she wrapped a multi pocketed bum bag, which she had christened her battle pouch. Over her shoulder she slung a large super soaker water pistol and finished off the ensemble with an oversize fleece, after checking that the water rifle was not visible she made her way downstairs and joined her Mum, Dad and Brother in the car. Trogg noticed the strange choice of clothing but made no comment; his daughter was an independent spirit and if she wanted to dress like she was going on manoeuvres then it was okay with him.

Tank had no such sensitivity Its GI Jane he shouted.

BLanna applied a little psychology and rather than responding to her brothers jibe she quietly asked her Mum

Mum can I borrow your new duster

The psychology worked and Tank remained silent for the rest of the journey.

Arriving at the Embankment they were greeted with hundreds of fans, from both camps, milling about and waving their banners good-naturedly. The tackle stands were busy setting up and a delicious smell of cooking food emanated from a huge marquee that had been erected to serve as both match headquarters and caf. The Trogg family entered the tent and were greeted enthusiastically by the rest of the team; GB walked over and shook hands with Trogg as they had not seen each other since Russia. Trogg looked up in surprise as his hand felt like it was being crushed in GBs grip, looking at his friend he noticed a new look in his eye; GB appeared calm and hard and for the first time Trogg realised that Georgie Boy was not a man to mess with.

Whats happened to you? he asked

What do you mean?

In Russia you acted like a girl, now youre more like Charlie Bronson

GB looked around furtively; come over here he hissed, taking Trogg by the arm and pulling him to a corner of the marquee; where they couldnt be overheard.

Id had a problem for a couple of weeks before we went to Moscow he whispered

What sort of problem?

GB looked around to make sure no one was listening, I was turning into a women; the Doc said it was a hormone imbalance

Whaaaat? said Trogg

Shhhhhhhh, someone might hear us. I started having mood swings and getting tearful, my skin got softer than the missuss, my hair grew like there was no tomorrow and I .

The last bit was so mumbled and quiet that Trogg had to lean in

what was that last bit he asked

I was growing baps replied GB in anguish.

Something to play with in bed I suppose replied Trogg, ever the voice of practicality.

Dont joke mate, my missus was starting to get lesbian tendencies

What did you do?

The Doc gave me a course of Testosterone and Steroid injections, they have sorted me out but the problem now, is that I have rages and I dont know my own strength

I noticed replied Trogg still flexing his right hand to try and get some feeling back.

Oy; yer pair of poufs shouted Wisey yer breakfasts are here.

They re-joined the team, after Trogg had sworn to keep GBs secret and to watch and keep an eye on him if his rage started to show.
The Drowners were all sat at one long table and were kept busy with requests for advice and autographs etc. Tank was in a deep conversation with WO about machetes, Dian was sharing a recipe for Cottage Pie with Peter and BLanna was talking to Phoenix about why he felt that he annoyed everyone; although she had to move away after two minutes because she had an irresistible urge to slap him.

The general hubbub stopped when a beautiful woman entered the tent and stood looking around whilst her eyes got used to the gloom.

Blimey said Red Leader she is a dead ringer for Jill Ireland

Everyone craned their necks for a look; the woman looked over, saw Georgie, waved and made her way over, smiling brightly. Pomp made the assumption that she was coming over to him and he rose and removed his Fedora with a practiced flourish. The smug smile disappeared from his face as she walked straight by, without a second glance, and placed a kiss on GBs lips.

Sorry Im late darling, I was sorting out a suitable bikini to wear whilst you were tied up with the match.

This is the missus said GB, proudly, to the rest of the team.

There was a stunned silence, GP57 was the first to find his voice

You; are with him? he asked incredulously.

My dear said Neil of the Nene I have an excellent optician, if you would like his number I could write it down for you

The Drowners, including GB and his missus, collapsed into hysterical laughter.

By god mate spluttered Phoenixicus you dont crack many jokes, but when you do they are real quality

Neil blushed and uttered a quiet thank you.

The reverie was broken by a loud whining noise,

what the fook is that said BLanna doing a very creditable impression of Wise owl.

They all laughed as they made their way outside; Winston and Albert did a high five with their paws as they looked at the unguarded plates left by the team.

Outside, the Drowners looked down the Embankment in amazement, coming towards them in a triangle formation were six mobility scooters carrying the Retro stars. Like a gang of ageing hells angels with big Kev at the front, resplendent in one of the Anglers Mails STD T shirts, leading the team at 4mph. Wise Owl saw the STD T shirt and shouted over to Phoenixicus

Looks like youre a gonner ere

Phoenix, looked suitably embarrassed, and then glared at Trogg, knowing how he had been set up on the flight home from Moscow; he would wait patiently for an opportunity for revenge.

So uncouth muttered Neil

Big K pulled to a stop in front of the Drowners

Now then lads are thee ready for a drubbing

The crowd cheered, although the majority were staunch Drowners supporters no one wanted to see the Retro stars be embarrassed, they had been great champions in the past and everyone had the utmost respect for them, it was akin to the Larry Holmes fight with Ali when Ali was way past his prime.

The coin was tossed Heads called Kevin; the coin came down
tails.

Well have evens said Peter delightedly; peg 4 was dead opposite the Barge.

The two teams sorted out the pegs for each angler and the 1000 side bet money was handed over to Keith Arthur for safe keeping. Keith then announced over the PA system
Peg 1 Kevin Ashurst
Peg 2 Peter
Peg 3 Ken Giles
Peg 4 Red Leader
Peg 5 John Dean
Peg 6 Neil of the Nene
Peg 7 Dave Thomas
Peg 8 Soprano
Peg 9 Max Winters
Peg 10 Phoenixicus
Peg 11 Ian Heaps
Peg 12 Wise Owl

As the teams were setting up, two large coaches turned on to the Embankment, BLanna sighed and prepared for action.
Dick, Fatha, PG and Peter Drennan were stood at the entrance to the Marquee,

looks like more supporters said Dick

Trogg and GB ran over theyre not supporters they are bloody Antis Trogg told them.

They all stood in the road as the coaches pulled to a stop and about 80 people disembarked and stood in a group opposite Trogg and GB. PG and co. had melted off to the side. Tank and Dian walked over the road and joined the two security men; like a scene from a spaghetti western the two groups eyed each other.

All of the Antis sported the long straggly hair, sallow skin and sunken eyes, synonymous with a poor diet. At the front stood the two leaders, Justin and Tintin who were accompanied by their, obviously frustrated, girlfriends.

The anglers paused in their setting up and, reluctant to leave their gear, contented themselves with watching what would unfold, WO, however, slipped his machete into his left boot in readiness.

Lets just wade in snarled GB taking a step forward

Wait said BLanna; walking in front of them she placed a hand on her Dads chest and said Let me have two minutes, I want to prove a couple of hypotheses that I have and also stop you from getting locked up

Trogg looked at her sceptically, he knew she was tough but his paternal protectiveness weighed heavily.

Two minutes? he questioned

Then they are all yours promised his daughter

Youve got it love

Thanks Dad

GB get ready to charge if there is even a hint of her getting hurt

Youve got it mate replied Georgie Boy.

BLanna shrugged off her jacket and faced the foe, Winston and Albert stood either side of her and bared their teeth.

A little girl with Gnasher and Muttley are not going to stop us scoffed Justin

BLanna looked them square in the eye and said reasonably You are not going to prevent these people from taking part in a perfectly legal event

Tintin laughed and, taking a large stone out of his pocket said

and how are you going to stop me from throwing this rock at him he pointed to big K on peg 1.

Faster than the eye could see a catapult with a purple handle and pink fluffy pouch appeared in BLannas hand and a small ball bearing smashed into Tintins finger. He howled in agony,

Like that she said

Winston and Albert hunkered down and snarled like a couple of hell hounds.

Fooking ell shouted Wisey its Annie Oakley

BLanna looked at Tintin you made a threat, I was defending myself she said simply.

In order to stop Georgie from tearing into them Trogg got hold of the back of his belt and held him fast;

she asked for two minutes, lets respect her wish.

Are you going to leave asked BLanna

No way sobbed Tintin, now in tears from the pain in his finger.

You had better save these first then

BLanna then loaded and fired her catty, so smooth and so fast she would have put Katniss Everdeen to shame and 12 big pouches of maggots showered over the antis. The result was spectacular as, amid the screams, they all began frantically crawling around trying to save the maggots. BLanna took advantage of the distraction to unsling the super soaker off her back, running towards the crowd of crawling Antis she squirted a red liquid over them, quartering around the periphery of the crowd she systematically sprayed the scrabbling mob in front of her. For ten long seconds nothing happened, then someone let out a scream of pure anguish

Its blood he shouted;

what followed was like the scene from the exorcist where the young girl gets sprayed with holy water and the Antis desperately tried to get away from the dark red Pigs blood that was being sprayed over them. Their nerve finally went and; thoroughly routed, they fled back to their coaches like their backsides were on fire. As the coaches pulled away, wheels spinning, in a cloud of smoke, BLanna heard the voices in her head

You would make a great Pirate said Captain Jack

Very cunning, you should be proud husked Bellatrix

That fooking shown em screamed Ozzy in a Leeds accent, BLanna looked round as Wisey picked her up in a hug Thats my girl he shouted

No; thats my girl said Trogg

No thats our girl said Dian

And my sister said Tank looking at her in awe.

BLanna felt the colour coming up in her cheeks and she quickly turned to the anglers

Come on you lot havent you got a match to fish

A cheer went up from the crowd so loud that people thought there was a match on at the City ground and Forest had finally scored a goal.

The Troggs went into the Marquee to celebrate with a coffee.

How did you know they were coming asked Trogg

I was talking to my friend Mellisa on face book began BLanna

she has a cousin who is going out with a lad who knows a girl that has a friend whose brother is dating a girl whose sister is going out with an Anti and she told us that they were coming here. Simple really

The others looked at each other, I think I got that said Dian

No matter said Trogg, I am so proud of you

Thanks Dad she blushed

Do you want to come and work the doors with me asked Tank

No thanks; I dont like bloodshed

I Bet those Antis would disagree with that one said her Dad.
They made their way outside and found the team huddled around PG having a last minute chat

OK lads said Pomp win this one and nobody can question our superiority

Im bricking it said Soprano, the new boy.

Dont worry said Peter you have fished well in practice and CM will keep you updated throughout the match

His phone suddenly pinged, taking it out of his pocket he read the text message to the others

GOOD LUCK COMRADES, HOPE YOU CATCH LOTS OF BIG FOOKERS! LOVE VITAS AND JORGE

Thats nice exclaimed Neil maybe we could invite them over for a re-match next year

There was a general buzz in the affirmative and the team made their way back to their respective pegs.

Where the hell is our bank runner snarled Dick

BOB shouted Fatha

A familiar white cap bobbed its way through the crowd,

sorry I was signing autographs

Signing bloody autographs roared Dick, thou is sposed to be running tbank

He allus was a bloody nuisance said Fatha

Aye, thous reet there, the only reason he was int team was because all the Browning reps used to send their Wives and Girlfriends round to convince me to keep him in. He smiled dreamily at the memory.

Over on the trade stands Roger Surgay had found a load of old stock and he was doing a roaring trade in Brennan & Hickman aprons, Stanton Centrepins and green visors. He had also made one of his lads wrap purple tape around the handles of the Black Widows he had on display and pink fur on the pouches. These had sold out within 10 minutes of BLannas demonstration and he was now desperately on the phone trying to get more stock.

Five minutes before the whistle, all was calm; the anglers sat contemplating their approaches little realising that they would be, over the course of the next 5 hours, instrumental in writing into the record books what would become known as the greatest match in the history of competitive angling.

The whistle sounded and a chorus of sharp snaps, cracks, creaks and groans rang out from each odd peg as joints and muscles made their respective owners aware that they were too old for this.
On peg 1 big Kev started out with feeding 20 huge Jaffas of brown crumb and leam, liberally stuffed with bloodworm and joker. The problem being was that this took him half an hour on account of the fact that he had to stop and massage his elbow after every other ball. On pegs 3, 5 & 7 Ken, John and Thommo were feeding a handful of maggots each chuck and running a stick float through at their rod ends, whilst Max and Ian on pegs 9 and 11 were casting a waggler and a big stick respectively, about 3 rods out and fishing caster.

All the Drowners were using the new Genesis floats, which had been christened, a mixture of bristle and stick, and were now known as The Genesis Brick range. Only Red leader was deviating from this plan and he sat, a solitary figure, staring at a skyward pointing quivertip.

Big K started catching on his very first cast, although he was already behind Peter, due to the length of time he had spent baiting up.

Peter cast in and his float tip pointed downstream, by holding back he brought the tip to vertical and inched it through his hot spot. The tip disappeared and a small perch was soon in the net, Peter grinned happily, he loved this sort of fishing.

Crowds had gathered round all of the odd pegs and they gazed, in awe, at the sheer artistry of the old stars. Deany on peg 5 was, literally dancing his float through his swim using a Match Ariel and an old Craddocks rod endorsed by Dave Thomas, Ian on peg 11 was fishing further out and holding his rod vertical, thereby stopping his float dead in the water, by lowering and raising the rod he was inching his bait through the swim and making it look simple.

If its that easy why cant I do it one observer was heard to remark.

Ken on peg 3 was amazing everyone with his economy of movement, cast, feed, trot, strike and unhook, he fished like an automaton and never looked hurried.

Bloody hell said a spectator I have just timed him at 20 seconds from casting in to putting a fish in his keepnet and casting in again.

Sorry shouted Ken Im not as fast as I used to be much to the delight of the crowd.

After 2 hours it was clear that the old men were ahead, catching 3 fish to the Drowners 2, they simply had too much experience, from the days when it was much tougher.

Soprano was fishing a solid match and had around 2lb of bits, he was joined by Genesis who walked down the Embankment wincing, and cursing his Lev Yashin ancestor of a consultant with every step.

Have you packed up the stand mate asked Soprano, striking and missing a bite

Ive sold out grinned Genesis I have made more money today than I normally make in a month and could easily have made more if I had brought more stock. Ive got advance orders for Bricks to keep me busy for the next six months

Thats brilliant mate said Soprano; genuinely pleased for his mate.

On peg 4 Dave was getting worried, he had only had one bite and had missed it;

Ive bought you a coffee said BLanna appearing at his side with one of GP57s special lattes.

Aw thanks lass said RL gratefully

Pomp said that I should show you these she said producing a handful of huge, pure white maggots.

Where did you get these

I found a dead pigeon and bred them myself especially for the Antis; a you tube video showed me how to do it. Ive only got about four handfuls left though

Dave took the perfect Gozzers that she gave him and put them in some bran in a separate container. Reeling in, he re-baited with two of his new maggots and recast. The feeder had hardly settled when the tip wrapped around and bream number one was soon in the net.

Going in to the last hour it was too close to call, and as all the Drowners, bar Dave, were behind, it was all resting on his shoulders. Suddenly a gasp went up from the crowd as Red Leader gave out a yell, dropped his rod in mid cast and slumped down clutching his shoulder, his face contorted in agony. PG and Peter Drennan rushed over

Whats happened said Peter

My shoulders gone said Dave I felt the muscle rip and the joint come out of its socket on that last cast

They wont let anyone cast for you observed Peter and you cant risk serious injury for the sake of a match; I think that you had better pack up

No way snarled Dave I will get that feeder out even if I have to swim across to do it

Pomp looked thoughtful dont do anything until I get back with that he strode off towards the trade stands.

A crowd had gathered round and were offering words of condolence to Dave when, through them, dressed in a miniscule bikini top and matching thong, shimmied the Jill Ireland look alike that was GBs wife.

Im a nurse she stated take off your shirt and let me have a look at you

Peter helped Dave off with said garment and Dave added a pulled back muscle to his list of injuries as he tried to suck in his lifetimes addiction to pies.

Mrs GB was busily massaging the offending shoulder when PG returned clutching a large package, in his other hand he held a parcel.

Lets try this he said Ive shown it to Dick and Fatha and they have no objections

Pomp then revealed a remote controlled bait boat; Ive just bought this off one of the carp stands; put the feeder on the platform, jiggle these two handles and when it reaches the barge, press the button and it will tip the feeder into the water.

Dave looked at PG with a new found respect that, mate, is pure unadulterated genius

Just doing my job replied PG modestly.

The boat was soon assembled and Dave, now fully dressed, placed his feeder and baited hook on the boats platform and pressing the starter the boat buzzed into life.

The huge crowd watched with baited breath as the little boat, steered, by RL made its way across the mighty river Trent, there was a gasp as a piece off driftwood headed towards it but Dave, through skilful use of the controls narrowly avoided a collision, a wag in the crowd started singing;

Come on Thunder Child from the War of the Worlds album by Jeff Wayne and the crowd all sang along.

The boat finally reached the barge and deposited its load without mishap and everyone cheered and clapped.

Dave passed the control box to BLanna saying bring it back lass, please

With 2 minutes of the match remaining RLs tip twitched, no more than an inch, but knowing it was his last chance, he struck and felt a good fish. Unfortunately, the strike had inflamed the shoulder again and Dave bit down against the burning sensation as he tried to fight his quarry.

The whistle sounded and Dave groaned Fish on
You have 15 minutes to land it said Keith Arthur, the referee, setting a stopwatch.

Dave knew it was going to be the longest 15 minutes of his life.
He tried his best but his shoulder just would not respond and every time he moved it the agonising jolts got worse.

Put rod on the rest with the butt under your leg suggested WO, who along with the rest of the Drowners and the Retro stars, had come over to watch.

Dave followed the advice and was able to gain line, fortunately, bream were not known for their fighting capabilities, if it had been a barbel, thought RL, he would have given up.

2 minutes left shouted Keith

The bream was now just out of netting distance and if Dave could have lifted the rod it would have been an easy matter. He reached over with his right hand and tried to lift, with a howl of pain he had to quickly lower the rod.

1 minute left said Keith

Dave tried again, this time the pain was even greater in its intensity, beads of sweat ran down the gritty Yorkshiremans face and, once more he had to put the rod down.

30 seconds whispered Keith its now or never mate he added.

Dave looked up, leaned over to his rod and gripped the blank, above the reel seat, in his teeth. The crowd gasped as, inch by inch he drew the fish towards him.

10 seconds said Keith

Go on lad; you can do it shouted big K.

Dave gave one last gargantuan heave and there was a groan from the crowd as his teeth bit right through the blank and the broken rod fell into the water.

Time shouted Keith just as Dave lifted the landing net with the bream, all 6lbs of it, safely in the folds.

Hes only gone and fooking done it screamed WO jumping up and down in excitement.

The crowd went absolutely wild, everyone was hugging each other Pomp was embracing Peter Drennan, both men sobbing; Dave managed to cop a quick snog off GBs missus when no one was looking and Neil and Ken shook hands warmly, congratulating each other on their performances.

By god lads said big K this will be talked about for a few years to come.

Eventually everything settled down and the weigh in commenced. It was decided that Dave would be weighed in last, to give him time to calm down and get a bit more treatment from Mrs GB, it also added to the tension as it was obvious that the match hinged on Daves weight.

The Retro stars had fished superbly and weighed an, estimated, average of 5lbs per man more than the Drowners, the closest was Neil who had succumbed to the wizardry of John Dean by a mere 4oz; Neil weighing 7lb 12oz and Deany, a level 8lb. New boy, Soprano, had justified his selection only losing out to Dave Thomas by 12oz but WO had been battered by Heapsy, Peter had been drubbed by Kevin and Phoenixicus had been hammered by Max.

The scales eventually arrived at peg 4;

BLanna who had been keeping a running total in her head said

I make it 54lb 12oz to the Retros and 31lb 6oz to the Drowners

You need more than 23lb 6oz she said to Dave.

WO and Neil lifted Daves keepnet out of the water and tipped the fish into the weigh bag, everyone crowded round, the needle jumped a few times between 22 and 26lb before settling on 24lb 14oz. Red Leaders superhuman effort had not been in vain; the Drowners had done it, the crowd went ballistic, it was the perfect end, the Drowners had won but the Retros had not been embarrassed.

Keith Arthur jostled his way around the throng handing out the side bet money, when he reached Dave he said this is the only bet going to the Drowners

Fooking marvellous scoffed WO we win the match but they get the money

I think, in a perverse way that is fair, said Phoenix; for once everyone agreed with him.

I think that is mine said Peter Drennan trying to snatch the bundle of tenners that Keith had given to RL

What you on about screamed Dave

I covered the bet, I get the winnings

No Way said Dave and his fingers tightened in a vice like grip.

Peter had to resort to squeezing the bad shoulder to make him let go and Dave, who had endured pain beyond the limits of human endurance during the bream fight, broke down and sobbed like a girl at the thought of losing money.

Here you are mate said WO handing a stack of banknotes to him.

Whats this sniffed Dave, wiping his snotty nose on his sleeve.

I put on two bets of 100, one for you and one for me, at 10/1, heres yer winnings

Dave hugged WO I love you he said

Fook off yer poof snapped Wise Owl

Excuse me for interrupting thou foreplay, but I would like to say summat stated Big K.

Everyone quietened down and Kevin continued;

Weve just been beaten fair and square by a good angling team, helped by brilliant tactics from a fantastic manager and for that; lads you have my respect

Hear hear said Heapsy

What Dave did with that last fish, couldnt be done, but he did it. His weight would have meant nowt without the back-up weights from his team. What we all seem to forget, however, is that none of this would have been possible if it hadnt have been for that slip of a lass (he pointed to BLanna) taking on a gang of full grown men. If she was a bloke she would need a wheelbarrow to carry her gonads. Come her lass

BLanna walked shyly over to Kevin

Im splitting my winnings with you and you have my thanks

Me an all said Ken

and me said max

All of the Retro stars gave BLanna half their winnings, the crowd cheering like banshees, carried the blushing girl on their shoulders and did a procession of honour up to the Trent Bridge and back.

Half an hour later everything had calmed down, the anglers and spectators had left and the only people remaining in the car park were Trogg and his family.

Come on said BLanna I am going to use my winnings to upgrade our hotel

they all piled in the car and the Troggs set off to explore the caves of Nottingham.
 

N orm

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That is bloody brilliant Davey boy, just spent my lunch break reading it.
You sir, can certainly write [:T]

[:D][:D][:D]
 

Peter

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Bloody awesome read once more Mr Spence.[:T]
 

feldri

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Absolutely brilliant! Love it.
 

Trogg

the bouncer
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Tried to reply this afternoon just after you posted but it wouldn't let me for some unknown reason [:C][:C]

I was reading it out to Dian and when i got to the bit where she brings me a coffee and gives me a kiss her exact words were "yeah, you can tell it's fantasy cos there's no way that would happen" then i read out the bit about the knuckle duster.."that's more like it, has he met me at a fishin?"[:(]


Then decided to wait untill B'lanna got home so she could read it before i replied, she loves the idea of "messing up anti's" and is now asking for a supersoaker [:0][:0]

Once again a fantastic read, i wish i had half your talent for writing Dave, genius just doesn't seem to cover it!

By the way, the wife says "he must have a shltload lot of time on his hands maybe he should get a hobby, he could try fishing" [:D][:D]
 

Dave

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Absolutely brilliant Mr Spence [:T]

I saw this several times during the day but I was working in the background and having been tipped off it was a long read thought I'd save it until this evening - I'm glad I did [^]

MD's bestows the honour of Literacy Genius on you and for that you are bestowed the Golden Pie Award
 

Peter

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Originally posted by Spence



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

Bloody good job you added the caveat above Dave as you've obviously never seen Red Leader fish.[:p][:D][:D][:D]
 

bryanh

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Another fantastic read Dave; bet you spent a good number of hours researching and proof reading[:T]
 

Dave

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Oi Peter !! - You owe me a Quid, it's there in print [:D]
 

Peter

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Never have a side bet with team mates when fishing a team match.
There's no I in team.[:p][:D]
 
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