Coffs a mecca for big game anglers

A BLUE marlin, weighed in at 362.5kg on Sunday, has taken the record for the heaviest ever weighed in and recorded at Coffs Harbour.

Ross Smith, of the Coffs Harbour Game Fishing Club, tagged and weighed the massive fish, which was caught from local game fishing boat Matador after a two-hour struggle.

Skipper Sultan Linjawi said that the morning had been rough. They had managed to find a couple of dolphinfish and also hooked up a nice sized albacore where the birds were working.

He said when the water temperature suddenly went up to 24.2 degrees Celsius; he knew his plan had come to fruition.

Looking back across the pattern from the tower, Sultan said he saw 'this monster' sitting there.

“It came in really black, really really big and really black,' he said.

“It was just shadowing the lure - watching, watching. Then it came inside, laying alongside, just slipped across and slammed it. The fish went nuts, absolutely nuts.”

“It took a huge fantastic run which ended up with a big belly of line about 80 metres in front of Matador. It was just spinning in circles.”

Ross Smith was on the rod and he had hooked a good solid fish. Working hard on stand-up, Ross wrestled the rod for nearly two hours. By the end, he was cramped up and just could not lift the rod any more.

He said he knew he had a big fish on but did not really know how big until it came up next to the boat. In a team effort, Matt Renneberg and Steve Marshall worked quickly on wire to get the tag in.

“We always tag and release but unfortunately after it was tagged, there was a hitch and we had to bring the fish on the boat,” Ross said later.

The marlin was later weighed at the International Marina Gantry in order to complete documentation for the Department of Primary Industries pelaegic fish monitoring program. It has taken out the Coffs Harbour Game Fishing club's Blue Marlin 37kg Male record as well as the Blue Marlin All Tackle record.

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