SAM MILLS tried for nearly a year to catch his first Hampshire Avon barbel and finally broke his duck with a fish of around 7 lb and then a few days later this personal best 15 lb 14 oz beast.

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The 28-year-old surveyor from Christchurch, Dorset, said: “It is truly the fish of a lifetime. I was using a single hookbait with no free offerings, it picked up a hair-rigged pellet wrapped in a large piece of home-made paste, legered on a running rig with a 2 ft 12 lb mono hook link and size 10 hook.

“I only started barbel fishing last November after years dedicated carping. Over the last few months I’ve had plenty of fish from the Wye and managed my first double and new PB 11 days ago from the BAA stretch of the Warwickshire Avon at Fladbury weighing 11 lb 1 oz.”

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