SIX of the country’s best female anglers have been named to represent England Ladies at the World Championships this year following an assessment day at Makins Fishery last weekend.

Team manager Dave Brooks has opted to keep the core of last year’s squad together for the contest in Serbia on August 26 & 27 with experienced internationals Helen Dagnall, Kayleigh Dowd, Leanne Knott, and Samantha Sim all earning caps again for their country in 2023.

There will also be a return for Abbi Kendall, who made her England debut in Portugal in 2014, and a new cap being awarded to May Potter.

The assessment day saw 15 ladies, including three junior anglers who took part in the England Talent Pathway, tackle Makins’ Lake 2 where Dave and assistant manager Jason Kirk set them a silverfish challenge on the pole.

“We’d like to thank all the ladies who took part in the assessment day this year,” said Dave. “The standard was very high once again.

“The squad that has been selected is packed with anglers who have silverfish experience on natural waters – the same requirements which are needed for international competitions.

“I’d urge all anglers who have ambitions to fish for England to incorporate regular natural water matches into their calendar each year as the more they can focus on float fishing for silverfish helps us to compete with the rest of the World at this level.”

There was sadness from within the camp too as England’s highest-ranked Ladies International, Julie Abbott, has opted to step down from duty this year.

“Julie has been part of the England Ladies set up for over a decade and will be missed this year,” admitted Dave. “I’m sure she will come back stronger, and we all thank her for all the commitment and quality she’s shown to the England Ladies for such a long period.”

Dave also praised the three young anglers who took part in the assessment, adding: “We we’re blown away by the quality and skills of the youngsters who had come through the England Under 15 Talent Pathway scheme to be honest and it would point to the future is looking bright for England Ladies.”

Team England Ladies are currently looking for a sponsor to help them in their quest for gold in August, where they’ll be facing around a dozen other nations on the Dunavac Canal at Apatin, in the north of Serbia.

The competition venue varies from 1.5m to 4m in depth and the flow is dependent on the water levels of the connecting Danube. Target species will be bream, roach, and bleak with odd crucians and carp also in residence. Average catches range from 2kg up to 8kg.

* Thanks to Andy Pell and the team at Makins for donating the pegs and supporting the assessment day.

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