CHRIS JACOB landed the biggest tench reported in recent years when he connected with this 14 lb 8 oz monster.

The specimen is the joint fourth biggest ever recorded, according to the Tenchfishers Top 50 list, and just over 11 oz under Darren Ward’s 15 lb 3 oz 6 dr British record.

It fell to Chris during a session after carp at the Tippings Lane syndicate water, in Berkshire.

The 25-year-old IT consultant, revealed: “When I first hooked it I thought it was a carp, but as I got it close enough to see it the fish rolled over and as soon as I saw the ‘paintbrush’ tail I knew it was a tench and something special.

“Then it seemed to wake up and went on several runs under the rod tip, and my heart was in my mouth as I knew it could be the tench that had been out last year at over 13 lb.

“I couldn’t believe it when I got the fish on the scales and I weighed it three or four times. It was only when I spoke to Dean Fletcher, who runs the syndicate, that I realised how close to the record it was, and I think the way it is putting weight on it could go on to beat it.’

James Pierce, who is involved with running the social media side of things for the syndicate, commented: “It’s very hard to tell if it will go on to break the record as it could be over 16 lb in a couple of years, or turn up dead tomorrow, so we’ll have to let fate play its part in that.

“It has grown from when it was caught 12 months back at 13 lb 6 oz and I think this is the only one that’s been over 10 lb in the last few years, but eights and nines are common.”

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