The Connacht Shore Committee of the Provincial Council hosted the IFSA World Championship Qualifiers over the weekend at various venues in the Mayo area, with anglers and stewards based at the Helm in Westport and very well looked after by owner Vinnie Keogh and his excellent staff. The beaches selected were Whitestrand on Saturday morning, Enniscrone on Saturday evening, and Keel on Achill Island on Sunday. 36 anglers of the country’s top shore anglers qualified for this event, having either remained in the panel from last year’s qualifier, or having finished in the top 10 in the Master Angler competition held late last year.
After 3 gruelling 4-hour sessions, interspersed with much driving, rain showers, and much appreciated food and refreshments in the Helm, the winning anglers were announced on Sunday evening back in Westport. Joining team captain Martin Howlin, who had already made the team by winning the Master Angler event, were John O’Brien, Eugene Farrelly, Dave Roe, Joe Duggan and Derek Hendrick, who is first reserve. The team will compete in the World Championships later this year in Holland, and will hope to emulate the team of 2010, who won the overall gold medal in South Africa.
Hearty congratulations to the successful group, and well done to the organisers, particularly Peter Atkins and Mike Curtin from the Connacht Shore Committee who put in Trojan work, and to the many stewards from various clubs around Connacht who gave up their free time to help out.