From: Melkbosstrand, Western Cape
Biggest catch: 20,15kg common and a ±16kg mirror
"Apart from my wife and son, I have two overwhelming passions in my life: big carp fishing and cooking! I have been lucky enough to interconnect these two whenever I am next to the water.
As an enthusiastic angler since childhood, I have always dreamt of catching big carp – and converting to specimen has opened those doors for me. I am always willing to try new things, whether it's a different rig or a new sauce on my steak. Which brings me to my love for cooking – there's just nothing like a well prepared, wholesome meal next to the water's edge with your friends and a blazing fire keeping you warm!"
How many years have you been actively pursuing specimen angling?
My journey started in 2007, so I have been pursuing specimen angling for almost 8 years.
How often do you fish?
I don't nearly fish as often as I wish, but I try to pack at least two sessions a month. I target two dams locally and two extraordinary river systems, one of which is the Breede River.
What would you say is your niche in angling and what can you contribute that is new and fresh to South Africa's carp scene?
To this day, big and wild waters remain my passion when it comes to carp angling. I like to think of myself as a big water angler – that is where I've had most of my success. As a professional chef, I enjoy preparing mouth-watering meals, fit for any king, and I have many recipes up my sleeve waiting to become your next campfire meal.
Biggest rewards achieved in angling?
I have always fished for no one else except myself, and to this day, I believe that my fishing is for my own pleasure, not the catch report. I have gained a lot of knowledge over the years, and I enjoy sharing info with other anglers. I have a love for teaching and showing newbies the ropes of our sport, and seeing a smile on the face of someone you have helped land a proper fish. The feeling is unbeatable and a great reward in itself.
ARTICLES BY WIJAN PRETORIUS