He explained: “As we were setting up in the swim head marshall and event owner Simon Beanie came around to check we were happy. We explained our plan (which was to fish into the open water to our right) and expressed our confidence that we had a good chance to compete and progress to the final with the water we had to fish in. It was at this point that things took a turn for the worse and basically ruined our chances from the off. Simon stated that our right-hand boundary was actually a small bush halfway down the green to our left! This meant that we could not fish the water in which our swims were located and instead had to angle all four rods in to the fishless bay to our left.
“We, of course, protested this and made an official complaint but Simon put his foot down and said that was how it was going to be and we were to deal with it. As I’m sure you can imagine we were a little more than angry as we would never have picked the swim with better options still up for grabs at the time of the draw. It also meant we had to spend half an hour at the start of the match up ladders chopping down trees with hand saws just so we could even cast in to our ‘supposed water’.
“We finished last in the section and it was all down to the ridiculous decision over our boundary from the owner of the BCAC. We checked the official rules once we returned and as we thought we were right as the official rule states:
‘Each competitor must set up his rods and accommodation within the boundaries authorised by the officials. Competitors must not cast outside the limits of their swim, such limit to be marked by an imaginary line marking the middle distance between his and his neighbour’s peg marker. Any disputes as to the competitors casting outside the area must be reported immediately to the marshals. Marshals have the discretion to request that competitors re-cast their rods as and when directed and such request must be complied with.’
“We felt robbed of a fair chance and made an official appeal to the BCAC which has resulted in a free team entry for next year’s event. It is not the outcome we were hoping for but it’s better than nothing and will hopefully ensure that future events do not incur these types of problems. You would presume that the owner of the event that was acting as head marshal would know his own official rules!”
To read more about Tom Oliver’s month, click here!