A British record is wide open for a chase this autumn after another giant was reported from a canal where a fish over the official best was caught.

Ruffe don’t often make angling news, but matchman Richard Hicklin weighed in a whopping 4 oz specimen. It came during a contest on the Shropshire Union Canal at Norbury Junction in Staffordshire.

The latest catch comes after a 5 oz ‘Shroppie’ giant to Ian Gregory back in  2016.

Ian went on to catch a fantastic 5 oz 8 dr record-breaking ruffe last winter (main picture, above).

Ian, from Telford, told Angler’s Mail: “I decided not to put an official claim in at the time as I got a lot of negative abusive comments on social media.

“But I’ve still got the paperwork and I’m still deciding whether to put in an official claim now it has calmed down.

“I was shocked by the comments and I even look after the social media for Ecogear. It’s made me not post up any catches.

“I’ve had numerous ruffe over 3 oz and some big ones I’ve not even weighed on the Shropshire Union.

“There’s not many pike in there and very few big perch and lots of fry and I think the ruffe are feasting on them.”

Richard Hicklin ruffe

Matchman Richard Hicklin displays his 4 oz. ruffe

Match-caught giant ruffe shock

Solutions architect Richard Hicklin was stunned by his 4 oz match-caught specimen (above) from the Shroppie.

“I’ve fished for 32-plus years and never seen a ruffe this big,” he said.

“When he saw it the match secretary suggested we weigh it on its own so we weighed it with the bar scales and it came in at 4 oz.

“I caught it while fishing chopped worm for big perch down the track.

“I didn’t catch any other ruffe in that match just the big one at the start and it was the first bite I had after the whistle.

“I had never caught one this big and at first was not sure what is was I shouted to the chap in the next peg who told me It was a monster ruffe.

“My old man had always said that catching ruffe was a bad sign and often led to a blank.

“I ended the match catching 4 lb 11 oz of perch and skimmers in the end, well off the frame weights required on the day,” concluded the 41-year-old, from Telford, Shropshire.

The official 5 oz 4 dr British best ruffe was caught way back in 1980 by R. Jenkins from West View Farm in Cumbria.

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