Quintin van Jaarsveld
Shelly Beach Ski-Boat Club was once again a stellar host for the South African Junior Game Fish National Championships last week.
Hot on the heels of the senior nationals at the same venue, this year’s South African Deep Sea Angling Association (SADSAA) junior competition took place from Monday to Friday in decent conditions.
A total of 21 teams – 13 Under-19 and eight Under-16 sides – vied for national bragging rights. Yellowfin tuna was plentiful throughout, with a few jobfish, bonnies and skipjack also weighed over five full days of fishing.
In the Under-19 category, Mpumalanga shot into a big lead after two terrific days before their fortunes changed.
The single best day belonged to SADSAA, who netted a major haul on Wednesday that moved them into the lead.
This talented team, consisting of KwaZulu-Natal trio Seth van den Berg (captain), Tristan Schreiber and local angler Bevan Taljaard, were the most consistent side and went on to take top honours in commanding fashion.
Taljaard had a dream tournament that culminated in not only victory for his team, but individual honour as well as the Top Under-19 Angler of the Tournament.
The South Coast star’s top catches weighed 21.6kg – the third heaviest of the competition – 20kg, 19.40kg, 18.30kg and 17.90kg, all yellowfin tuna.
Eastern Province were the runners-up with fast-starting Mpumalanga ended up taking bronze.
They were followed by Gauteng, Southern Cape, Natal White, Border Blue, Free State, Southern Gauteng White, Natal Black, Southern Gauteng Black, Border White and Zululand.
Southern Gauteng Blue won the Under-16 competition, with Zululand and Free State securing second and third respectively.
They were followed by Natal, Eastern Province, Gauteng, Southern Gauteng Yellow and Southern Gauteng Red
Photos by Justin Klusener Photography