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Reviews

Match Fishing takes a look at a crucial item of tackle that makes keepnet management a doddle.

Joe Carass gets an exclusive look at the brilliant new Super Feeder mix from Sonubaits.

Joe Carass reveals the latest elastic development from Matrix that he believes will revolutionise pole fishing.

We check out the new Daiwa clothing range.

Daiwa has long had some of the nicest looking clothing on the bank; its classy branding makes for a great brand that many anglers want to wear. Fresh for 2018 is a new range of three garments that only serve to increase its appeal.

Soft-Shell Jacket

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A quality soft-shell jacket is a must for anglers. Not only are they nice and warm, they are comfortable to wear both to the draw and during the match.

The soft-shell can be worn both as the outer layer or a comfortable mid layer with a waterproof jacket worn over the top.

The jacket is made from top quality materials and also features three weather-resistant pockets to help protect items such as your phone when fishing in poor weather.

The high, zipped collar makes it very comfortable to wear when the wind is bad, and combined with the comfortable hood this is a superb garment.

Hoodie

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A front-zipped hoodie is the perfect everyday item of clothing. This is a garment of extreme quality that features a hybrid soft-shell material. This means the hoodie has water-repellent properties, making it more than just a simple hooded top.

It also has a high neckline to keep the wind off your neck.

Gilet

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The final garment is the quilted gilet. These have plenty of uses, and can be used on top of the hoodie to provide an extra layer of clothing. They also look incredibly smart and won’t look out of place wearing one to go out in.

This style of coat is becoming very popular and this one has already found its way into our wardrobes!

Available in sizes M to XXXL

Verdict: A stunning range of clothing that epitomises the Daiwa brand. The question is though, are you red or blue?

RRP: From £49.99

Buy now from Benwick Sports

BUY NOW BUTTON Retro 1

https://www.daiwasports.co.uk/categories/Coarse/Clothing 

Spliced-Tip Special!

Over a year ago my good friend Adam Richards rang me with an excited tone in his voice. He had received a sample of a new rod designed for river fishing. Adam has turned into quite the river angler over the past few years and he was quick to tell me that they were Sphere rods too!

Sphere has been an interesting concept. Browning has essentially produced some of the finest rods on the market and more recently one of the very best poles ever made. The idea behind Sphere is to produce tackle of no compromise using only the best materials, and so far they have definitely achieved great success! I have been impressed with the rods and have seen a good amount of them on the bank too. 

With such high-quality carbon, it was only a matter of time before Browning utilised the technology to produce some longer rods. And here we are with the Spliced-Tip River models. 

This is a two-strong range, with 13ft 6in and 15ft 6in models. I think more and more anglers are realising the advantages of longer rods for everyday river work and these two lengths are very interesting. 

What really interested me though, was the use of the spliced tip, something which you don’t often see in rods now. As soon as I assembled the rods and used them though, I got why the spliced tip was so essential. 

Float control is the number-one factor when deciding to use a longer rod, such as the 15ft 6in model. The extra length allows you to keep the line between the rod tip and float in perfect control. The extra length also allows lightning-fast bites to be hit. 

And that is where the Sphere carbon and spliced-tip combination works so well. Sphere carbon is incredibly responsive, and to make the tip respond as quickly as possible the blanks of these rods are pretty stiff. I think if the rod didn’t have the spliced tip it would be difficult to get a soft tip. 

The spliced tip comes into its own here as it gives you a super-soft action, it then blends perfectly into the rest of the rod nice and progressively. 

It’s an interesting balance to make as if the tip is too soft and the blank too stiff, it would be counterproductive as you would strike through the soft tip and hit the stiff blank, bumping everything! It took Browning a few attempts to get this right but the end result is magnificent. 

My test session was a little different as I visited the River Swale with Adam so he could show me the rods, while also getting a feature. We decided to use the longer rod for the bolo while the shorter rod was rigged up with a light waggler setup.

Controlling the floats with these rods in incredibly easy. The blanks are so responsive and it makes float control an absolute dream. It didn’t take me too long to get a bite and I was connected to a brute of a chub!

It was clear that the spliced tip made it perfect for smaller fish, but the way it blends into the blank when under the load of a big chub really surprised me. It’s seamless and the delivery of power is incredibly smooth. This is very important here as when chub are about you do need some control and these rods definitely give you that. 

What really struck me was just how light these rods actually are. The 15ft 6in rod weighs just 175g – to give you an idea of just how light that is, Browning’s 10ft Commercial King pellet waggler rod weighs 170g and that isn’t a heavy rod. This really helps as holding a long rod all day can be arm-aching stuff. 

It’s hard to express how much I liked using these rods. They are certainly a niche product, but for anglers who appreciate the highest quality fishing gear and want the best for their river work then you have to take a look at them.

 

RRP

13ft 6in £379.95

15ft 6in £419.95

Verdict

A stunning pair of rods that river anglers will go all googly-eyed over!

Something For Everyone

This eight-strong range of rods comes in lengths between 10ft and 13ft and includes various casting weights. The rods range from a 10ft Ultra Light, ideal for small sh at close range, right up to the 13ft Heavy that is capable of launching 120g of feeder.

We check out the range of Monster Feeder Rods from Preston Innovations.

 

European Design

These rods have been designed in conjunction with Dutch international angler Arnout Van De Stadt and have European venues and styles in mind. We don’t like the term ‘traditional’ when talking about tactics but these are traditional-style feeder rods aimed at natural-water work as opposed
to the Commercial Monster rods that have recently been released.

 

Compact Design

The trend in recent years is for rods to fold away into two pieces for ease of transportation. However, all but the 10ft model fold away into three pieces, which gives you a nice compact storage option.

This rod setup also helps provide an action that is dif cult to achieve with two-piece blanks.

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A Good Price

For this style of rod, you would probably expect to pay up to £200, especially for the 13ft Heavy model. A nice surprise, then, is to see these retailing between £99.99 and £134.99. This will prove popular as feeder competitions continue to grow and multiple rods are now being set up to cover various swims. Top-quality rods at a great price.

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Rods Available

  • 10ft Ultra Light 30g
  • 11ft Light 40g
  • 11ft Medium 60g
  • 11ft 6in Medium Light 50g 12ft Medium 60g
  • 12ft Heavy 100g
  • 12ft 6in Medium Heavy 80g 13ft Heavy 120g

Joe Carass gets on the bank with Daiwa’s latest carbon marvel.

David Haynes takes Middy’s margin-busting Shock Stikk for a spin.

The ZT-PRO Hook Tyer has taken the internet by storm recently, so we wanted to find out more about it and exactly how to use this clever contraption!

Assistant editor Jake Fowles has been giving the Middy XZ65-2 World Elite Handle a thorough testing over recent months, having seen its predecessor take a farewell dip…

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