SKI-BOAT January 2023

Page 32

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CONTENTS January/February 2023 Volume 39 Number 1 COVER:REFLECTEDGLORY A rampant Kenyan sailfish fights to rid itself of the hook. Photo by Erwin Bursik. FEATURES DEPARTMENTS 6Editorial — by Erwin Bursik 7Postbox 40SADSAA News 53Kingfisher Awards 54Bell Reel Kids 61Mercury Junior Anglers 62Marketplace 62Ad Index 63Business Classifieds & Directory 64Rapala Lip Last Word from the Ladies DOYOUPREFERANEZINE? FINDUSFORFREEONWWW.ISSUU.COM 9Doubling Down Catching dorado in KZN — by Justin Paynter 17Where to Fish Part 7:Dassen Island and surrounds —by Vic Warrington 24Fishaholics Take the Cake 2022 OET Bill- and Gamefish Tournament —by Bryan Jooste 31Rocking Some Cod Targeting KZN’s reef dwellers —by Craig Stubbs 38Onwards and Upwards 2023 DSBC Festival update — by Mark Wilson 452023 Fishing Calendar Start planning your fishing for the year ahead 46Rocking and Rolling Across the Waves 2022 Queens of the Ocean Competition — by Sheena Carnie 56Wild and Wonderful Exploring the mighty rivers of Namibia — by Erwin Bursik The official magazine of the South African Deep Sea Angling Association 4 4 6 6 9 9 2 2 4 4

Publisher: Erwin Bursik

Editor: Sheena Carnie

Advertising Executive: Mark Wilson

Editorial Assistant: Lynette Oakley

Contributors: Erwin Bursik, Sheena Carnie, Bryan Jooste, Justin Paynter, Craig Stubbs and Vic Warrington.

ADVERTISING – National Sales: Mark Wilson, Manager — 073 748 6107 Lyn Oakley, Sales — 082 907 7733

ADVERTISING – Gauteng & Mpumalanga: Lyn Adams — 083 588 0217

Publishers: Angler Publications cc POBox 20545, Durban North 4016

Telephone: (031) 572-2289 e-mail:

Subscriptions to SKI-BOAT: R220 per annum (six issues). New subscriptions and renewals: SKI-BOAT Subscriptions Department, PO Box 20545, Durban North 4016. Telephone: (031) 572-2280/89/97/98 Fax: (031) 572-7891

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Printing: Novus Print, Cape Town Distribution: On The Dot <>

Full production is done in-house by Angler Publications & Promotions on Apple Macintosh software and hardware.

SKI-BOAT Magazine, ISSN 0258-7297, is published six times a year by Angler Publications & Promotions cc, Reg. No. CK 88/05863/23, and is distributed by On the Dot, as well as directly by the publishers to retail stores throughout South Africa.

• Copyright of all material is expressly reserved and nothing may be reproduced in part or whole without the permission of the publishers.

• While every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the contents of this magazine, the publishers do not accept responsibility for omissions or errors or their consequences.

Views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of the publishers, the managing editor, editor, editorial staff or the South African Deep Sea Angling Association.


THISsubject seems like a cliché because it’s so often written and talked about, but all too often very little is actually done about it. Until fairly recently, that is, or at least so it seems.

With the advent of social media the exposure of those actually putting this concept into practice has started a huge movement of highlighting the younger generation’s exploits as they take to the ocean in ever increasing numbers. Even more encouraging is the impetus not only at a personal level but also at club and inter-provincial level to get more kids on the water far away from the evils of social media.

No longer is it a case of an over eager parent taking their son and/or daughter out to sea on their boat for a joyride, but there’s a definite drive and determination from parents and a wider group to encourage children to learn how to fish and to build on their skills.

Clubs and very encouraging sponsors within our sport are also coming to the party, supporting, promoting and effectively encouraging the younger generations by providing tangible rewards for active accomplishments during competitions.

Going back to the early days when ski-boating was a lot more dangerous — mostly because of the size of the craft and their low freeboard — taking a kid fishing was strictly controlled age-wise, but over the last 30-odd years this barrier has been lifted. The regulated minor age has virtually disappeared, and now that the craft are bigger and have higher gunnels and more protection, the practice of taking kids to sea has been encouraged.

We at SKI-BOAT started encouraging anglers to “Take a kid fishing” way back in 1998 when we started our Junior Anglers page. Thanks to ongoing support from Rutherford Marine/Mercury this feature has been inordinately successful. Not only do we receive countless photographs, but over this period I have also seen the “kids” of this era move on to represent their clubs and provinces in full interprovincial competitions.

This development and the enthusiasm shown is a great step forward in our sport. Not only does it give many youngsters the opportunity to experience the incredible challenge of hooking and landing a fish, but it also exposes them to the overall experience of going out to sea and experiencing the wonders and excitement of such an adventure.

Taking a kid fishing brings a new dimension to one’s own boating because you see everything through the eyes, expressions and excitement of the child on your boat. It’s a good reminder to those of us who can become a bit blasé about it all and forget what a true privilege it is to be able to venture out onto the sea.

If you have a child under 16 or know a child of that age whose parents don’t have the means to take them fishing, step in and offer them an outing this holiday. Yes, it often comes with a bit of extra hassle and you may have to fish a little less yourself while you help them, but that inconvenience is far outweighed by the excitement and appreciation you’ll see in the child. Make sure to take photos of the time out at sea, and when you return from your outing send us the photos and info for our Mercury Junior Angler page (see page 61 of this issue) or get the child to write a short story for our Bells Reel Kids page (see page 54 of this issue).

This issue will be on the shelves well before Christmas, and all of us at SKIBOAT magazine wish our readers a joyful and blessed Christmas and a very happy new year. We hope that 2023 will bring you much joy and excitement, with plenty of opportunities to spend time on the ocean fishing.

Till the next tide.

Erwin Bursik

6 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023


Onwards! Onwards! Onwards! The waves are forever calling Relentless,unyielding,forevermore The waves crashing on the shore

Mortals break on sands of time Splashes of light in deep dark Bright flashes then nothing more The waves crashing on the shore

Which holds the greater strength? One firm but always crumbling One always attacking with a roar The waves crashing on the shore

Against time,against reason,against logic

Forging forward,always wondering What it meant? What it was for? The waves crashing on the shore Poem by Steve Tarasev

Dear Editor, We don’t know the meaning of what happened on 5 November 2022 at the Queens of the Ocean comp,all we know is that it wasn’t supposed to happen.All we know is that we were not there to fish,we were part of something bigger than we could possibly understand.

So many people’s lives were changed,and if you were not there,you wouldn’t understand.There were so many things that happened,you can’t even imagine.Things that don’t make sense.

On that specific day,St Lucia become one.

Reckless,overwhelming,never ending waves chased the boats that launched that day,and one overturned. With that we all started praying on sea, and on land.Everyone became one.No one can describe that feeling.

At sea there was no wave big enough to scare us,because we had each other.Our reckless love became our strength.

We were surrounded by so many prayers.We kept on fighting.We are the men and women who wouldn’t give up.So many miracles happened that day.

Our fears were drowned.We went through hell and back.Our courage was unstoppable.Everything changed.What wanted to destroy us made us stronger, made us believers.

We are not built to be alone.Our souls needed friends.So we joined together.Again and again we faced the unstoppable.Promises covered any doubt we had.Everything passed.

We were faithful to each other.We anchored each other till the end.

The hope came and we were truly blessed.Hope never failed.Change came and the battles were over.All our prayers were answered.

We truly know prayers are more powerful than the waves.We were part of a miracle.We stood by our men.We became pirates of the sea.

Thank you to all the skippers that day,you are legends.Skipper of Dela ca Sea we don’t doubt you.We’ve got your back.

To all the women crew,you are truly amazing,never lose your spark.

Thank you to the gillies too,you were incredible helpers to all the women and the skippers.

Sea rescue,ground crew,Wiseman and Berno thank you!

Video man,think before you speak...stay true to all the skippers.

St Lucia,stand in your love!

Till next time.

To all the fish you’ve lost and all those still to come...keep on fishing Marlyn (pseudonym)


Miss Anissa Kotze is 11 years old and she is a keen aspiring angler.

Erwin Bursik and his wife Anne recently visited a lodge on the edges of Kruger National Park. Anissa was staying at the same property and diligently spent hours and hours fishing in the dam on the property.

Her perseverance paid off and she caught a few little fish which she eagerly showed Erwin.

Her excitement also earned her a copy of SKI-BOAT magazine which she couldn’t wait to read.

Happy fishing, Anissa, we hope to see you holding up some deep sea fish one day soon.


Dear Editor

I recently had a boat moved from Komatipoort to Jeffreys Bay.I used one of the companies advertising on Facebook,as they came with good references.I had photos taken of the boat before it left Komatipoort,but when the boat was delivered three days later in Jeffreys Bay,there was significant damage to the boat.

It seemed like they drove the boat under a low bridge or carport and broke the console completely off the boat.There were clear impact marks on the front of the console and the stainless canopy was also badly bent.

I lodged a claim with the company and after six months of fighting,the insurance company declined the claim. They say there was already damage to the boat before it was moved.

Here’s fair warning for you when moving a boat across the country...

Make sure you have hundreds of photos of the boat before it gets moved.Make sure the company has legitimate insurance to cover everything.Make sure you get them to sign a document,with photos attached of the condition of the boat when it’s handed over.

I learnt a very valuable lesson and had to pay VERY expensive school fees!

SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 7
TELLUSWHATYOU’RETHINKING We love hearing from our readers, and not just on social media either, so please feel free to write to us. Email your
letters to the editor to

Catching dorado in KZN

WITH the sun rising earlier each day as we head towards summer,anglers who drive on the M4 highway in Durban parallel to the sea eagerly scan the water.We also scout around to find out who has fished the last few days so we can ask what the water temp is doing on the outside.

Then we also watch social media with huge anticipation,waiting for the first pictures of the summer fish to be posted.KwaZulu-Natal offers an abundance of gamefish species to target,but this article is aimed at the green and gold acrobatic fish that we all love to catch — the mahi mahi,dolphin fish, popcorn bream or dorado.It is also known as the chicken of the sea,so you know it’s one of the best eating fish around.

This article is aimed at sharing info on how to target these fish,when to target them and what baits/lures are most effective.

WHEN Dorado are pelagic fish that move with the warm ocean currents,travelling in large shoals,hunting schools of baitfish. On the east coast of South Africa,we wait for that warm Moçambique current to start making its way down the coast before we start looking for dorado.When the water starts to change to that deep purple colour and our temperature readings start to go above the 24 degree mark,it’s game on.

Sodwana and Cape Vidal are very good indicators of when these fish have started to make their appearance.The odd picture is normally posted early in October from the above mentioned areas,and come December good catches are reported all the way along the coastline,right down to Shelley Beach and even the Wild Coast.

The dorado normally stay around until late April,or for as long as we have warm water of a decent quality.

SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 9
10 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023


Some of the spots where you should look for dorado are:

•Bait marks

•Along colour/current lines

•Wherever there are major changes in contour lines and drop offs

•Where there’s a change in water temperature

•Shipping lanes;dorado love a floating object,and ships are the perfect place for them to hide and surprise attack their prey.Please ensure that you adhere to marine regulations and that you stay a safe distance from the ships.

These fish can be caught in pretty much any area that has good water quality and reasonably warm water (24˚C and up).

In some parts of the world anglers are allowed to use fish aggregating devices (FADs) to catch these fish,but please note that this is illegal in South Africa,and FADs cause major damage to ships and ski-boats if they get caught in their propellers.Please refrain from this sort of fishing.


There is always much debate over what rods and reels to use,so I’m just going to give you my preference for trolling and pitching a bait.I like to use the Daiwa Saltist 40H multipliers,paired with the Daiwa Grand wave boat rod or Dorado Ski for trolling.

Line class is up to you.Socially most guys will use the Maxima Ultra green either 14- or 16kg line.If you are a competitive angler,use either 6- or 10kg line.Remember,these fish generally range in size between 4- and 10kg so

you don’t need heavy tackle to winch them out the water.

They are extremely enjoyable to catch and put on quite an acrobatic performance.

For pitching a bait or throwing stick baits for them,I like to use the BG 762MS rod and a BG 5000 grinder paired with 40-pound braid.


Trolling for these fish is extremely exciting because dorado normally hunt in large shoals and you will usually get multiple hook ups at once.

These fish like a fast-moving object, and at the end of the day you are trying force a reaction bite.A normal spread on my boat will be either two Rapala Magnum Dive Baits (Saltwater X-Rap) or two Williamson Speed-Pros.In the Rapala range,my two favourite colours are the Red Head UV and the Silver Blue Mackerel,and in the Williamson range my favourite is the bright pink.

I normally have these lures close to the boat (8-12m),and you will be surprised how often you get a pull on the close lures.

Many anglers believe that the engines scare off the fish,but some believe that the disturbance caused by the engines and the aeration of the water makes the dorado curious,and when they see what looks like a fish they see it as a great opportunity to attack.

I then have two lines further out (15–20m back) with small “softies/ konas”on.Purple and pink are your goto colours.

Then,in the middle,I have a “Hong Kong”(25m back) which is a bigger

Top view of the author’s usual spread.

kona.This rod is normally stood upright in the T-Top.I set this rod to pick up a sailie,marlin,wahoo or even a big tuna while targeting dorado.

Trolling speed differs from boat to boat and will also depend on sea conditions/current which also play a major part.There is no ideal speed;I just like to pull the lures as fast as I can,giving them the optimal performance in the water.If a lure starts to jump out the water or not track nicely,you must adjust your speed accordingly.

Three more good dorado destined for the dinner table.


As I mentioned earlier,dorado hunt in shoals,so when you are trolling and get a hook up,your crew needs to be awake and ready for what’s to come.

First things first — clear all the lines and put all the rods away.Then get your crew to take a spinning rod with a grinder and pitch a bait in the vicinity of where the hooked fish is.Your crew member must have the bail arm up. Nine times out of ten,another fish will pick up the live bait.

The way you strike is determined by the type of hook you use.If you are fishing with a circle hook,as soon as the fish attacks your bait,count to three and flip the bail arm closed.In theory, the fish should have hooked itself. Don’t strike it like you are sliding a bait from the beach or you will pull the circle hook right out the fish’s mouth.

If you are using a J hook,count to ten before fipping the bail arm over; this allows the fish to swallow the bait and then it’s game on.

Another crew member can then either throw another bait or a stick bait. A stick bait is a great way to get them to bite if the fishing is slow.

Once one fish has been boated, repeat the process as this ensures you keep the shoal of fish with you while you are drifting and fighting the fish.

Another good option is to keep a bucket of chopped up 5kg sardines and,while you are fighting the fish,get a crew member to throw over a few chunks as a time.This will help ensure that the shoal sticks with the boat and you are able to capitalise on the fish you have found.


Something that I am going to try more this season is to identify a specific drop off or area that has produced fish in the past.I am going to drift live baits on the surface and chum while doing so.It is not something that I have done much of,but I have heard of some great success stories using this method over the past few seasons.

My plan will be to fish four rods, one on the Scotty downrigger at around 15m,the next on a 3 ounce sinker,and two on the surface.On two of the rods I plan to use a Pulsator duster,either

the Pink HD65 or the Live Glow CD60.

I will use anything from a No 4- to 6 hook,and I guess only time will tell whether it works.


•Use five trolling rods.

•Set up four spinning rods (two with hooks for live bait and two with stick baits).

•Make sure you have two gaffs.

•Use lots of pink and purple lures;in my opinion these are the dorados’ favourite colours.

•There’s no need to go heavier than 40-pound leader.

•Carry a wet towel on the boat. These fish go crazy when they are brought onboard.If you throw a wet towel over their eyes,they calm down and it is much easier to remove the hook.

•Fish with a long leader if you are using a J hook.If you plan on keeping the fish you catch,it is much easier to cut the leader and retrieve your hook when you get back to the beach and fillet the fish.

12 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023
Some of the author’s favourite stickbaits. Tyler Dalton with a 6kg dorado off Durban Another green and gold beauty for Justin Paynter.


Part 7:Dassen Island and surrounds

Vic Warrington with a beautiful snoek caught off Dassen Island.
18 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023

LET me start by introducing you to the boat fishing gateway to the west coast of South Africa, and probably the best kept secret in the country...

Going up the Cape west coast,the first town past Melkbosstrand is Yzerfontein which is about 95km north of Cape Town along the R27.This little village was always known to be the capital of the west coast.

Back in the day it was a holiday haven for most of the Swartland farmers and commercial fishermen.They built holiday homes and boat sheds to take a break from their farming lifestyle and chill on the coast.The fishermen arrived in numbers around the same time that the snoek and yellowtail arrived for their annual spawning.Of course there were also vast amounts of baitfish.The town is also famous for crayfish,which are caught from the pier wall and at Skaap Eiland on the west side of the town.

One of the country’s most spectacular fishing spots,Dassen Island,is situated about 10km west of Yzerfontein and 55km north of Cape Town.

Dassen Island is an uninhabited South African island in the Atlantic Ocean.The flat,low lying island measures about 3km long northwest-southeast and 1km wide,with an area of 2.73km 2 .It is a proclaimed nature reserve which is managed by Cape Nature Conservation and entry is strictly forbidden.

In Dutch das (the plural being dassen ) means badger.In Dutch/Afrikaans the word dassie means “rock hyrax”or “rock badger”and the island is named after the colonies of hyraxes encountered there by the discoverers.Named Ilha Branca (white island) by the early Portuguese mariners,it was renamed Elizabeth Eiland by Joris Van Spilbergen in 1601. The name Dasseneiland (Afrikaans) is preferred for official purposes.It was also occasionally referred to as Penguin Island because at one stage it was home to the largest African penguin colony in the world.

The island is underpinned by a finegrained tourmaline granite,with a few zones of biotite granite.The intrusive rocks are partly covered by sand,and along much of the shoreline large, rounded boulders protrude from the sand to heights just above the high water mark.Although temporary pans form during the wet season (winter) in the interior,there is generally little fresh water on the island.

Dassen Island is surrounded by reefs — except along its eastern side — and many ships have been shipwrecked here.

The yellowtail and snoek season normally starts at the beginning of July and lasts until the south easterly wind

SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 19
A happy charter client with a fantastic 87kg yellowfin tuna caught out deep off Dassen Island. The author with a decent yellowtail caught off Dassen Island. The yellowtail and snoek season normally starts at the beginning of July.

starts,then all the pelagic fish swim into the wind and eventually end up at Cape Point.

The snoek which used to be regular visitors,vanished from Dassen about 13 years ago but made a surprise comeback in 2021.What was strange about their presence at the north west side of the island was that there were no tell tale signs like diving malgas (Cape gannets) or frantic terns.The fish simply appeared deep down on the 25-03 of Boompunt.

I accidently found them while jigging for yellowtail at about 23m.After catching our quota,I notified the commercial boats,and in a matter of 24 hours there were more than 120 boats all chumming and working their dollies. It was an extremely festive time for the dorpie as the boats returned very heavy laden and the langanas (fish sellers) started bartering in their rather crude and foul language,but that is how it rolls on the west coast — rof en onbeskof when the snoek manne are in town.

The slipway at Yzerfontein is not a harbour as one might expect;it is a “day light slipway”,so called as it does not have port or starboard lights at its entrance.That slip is a nightmare for launching in any swell larger than 3 metres.It has a reputation for swallowing launching cars and trailer,so your man at the wheel of your vehicle really needs to know what he’s doing.A quick release system on the trailer is highly recommended.

The eastern side of Dassen Island — stretching from the “Dop”in the north east to the Kalkoond on the south east corner — is the most popular area for fishing.It’s common to find recreational fishermen there pulling back lines in search of resident yellowtail or snoek that decide to stay and not move with the rest of the shoal.These fish are normally massive over the summer period and do really put up a good fight.

Huisbaai (House Bay) is the most beautiful part of the island.It is situated on the northern side and is also a shelter for yachts and trawlers seeking a bit of rest or netting for crayfish.The bay is on the leeward side of the island and hence is very protected from the prevailing summer south easter.

The western side is where all the action takes place during winter.It features a famous granite rock with a huge square chunk that fell out,that is commonly known as Spuitklip (Pike Rock). The surge of upward spray can often be seen in Yzerfontein and from as far as the R27.It is commonly believed that if Pike Rock is working,it’s best to stay away from the island.

On the south side of the island are the Three Sisters,also known as The Roaring Sisters.These are three blinders that break periodically and without

SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 21
A regular route used by the author heading from Yzerfontein to visit his favourite hot spots around Dassen Island. Kurt Santer caught this katonkel off Dassen Island. Archive photo by Ryan Nienaber. The author believes these are a highly underrated eating fish.

warning.If you’re in the wrong place at the wrong time it’s tickets for you,as those girls are vicious and a little skiboat has no chance.

Right out on the west side of the island about 3.5NM from the shore is a reef called South West Reef.It is always worth a visit if the westerly has been blowing for a few days because the fish are always attracted to the reef.Vertical jigging is always the best option on that reef if the fish are visible on the fishfinder,but are not surfacing.

If the snoek or yellowtail are there, then you can also expect to find some katonkel (Cape bonito) and slender tuna,normally under the bait balls.

Protea Reef is about 5.4NM SSW of Dassen and is very popular for quite a variety of fish including hotties which are now named Cape bream.This reef is much bigger than the South West Reef and has a southern extension that is also good for pelagic fish moving into the south easter en route to Cape Point and Robben Island.It is always a good idea to visit the two reefs if nothing is happening at the island.

You may wonder why the wind influences the movement of pelagic fish.Small baitfish,as we call them,are pelagic and they tend to swim into the wind to remain grouped.They migrate from way up the west coast,in fact from the Namibian coast.The westerly draws the small fish towards Lamberts Bay and then to St Helena Bay and on to Dassen Island,where they hang out for most of the time until the south easter arrives.

Another good snoek spot from years gone by is found north east of Dassen Island along the 16 Mile Beach,about 6 miles north of Yzerfontein in an area called bont duine (grey dunes).In the past when the snoek started appearing in the Yzerfontein area they always

started here.They would always appear right behind the breakers in a very sandy area.The sardines seem to lead them there for no apparent reason. That was about 15 years ago,but then they departed and have never returned.

Under normal conditions,most of the fishermen along the West Coast would scan the horizon for malgas and sterretjies diving with comorants on the surface,also getting in on the feeding frenzy,but lately these birds no longer behave in this manner and it’s all about electronic fishfinders now.

The fish have also changed their habits and have found a new delicacy, namely mantis shrimp,that is literally on the bottom of the ocean or between the kelp forests where they feed.It takes chumming and jigging to entice the fish up to the surface.The snoek boats use dollies and pike bait to lure them and then all the boats huddle close together to keep the shoal in the area.

The West Coast snoek are believed to be one of the heathiest eating fish in our waters because they have a very low mercury content and of course contain a large amount of omega 3 oils.

The other fish that is scientifically known to be the healthiest fish in our West Coast waters is the slender tuna. It has the highest count of omega 3 and almost no mercury in its flesh.It is not a nice fish to braai or eat raw,but is a brilliant fish to deep fry in a beer batter and serve with chips or on a bed of rice.

The most underrated eating fish along our coast is the katonkel (Cape bonito).These fish were commonly called kat kos (cat food) by commercial fishermen as there is simply no market for them.They are,however,very nice to eat raw,pickled or pan fried. Nowadays we are finding more and

more people asking for these feisty fighters instead of snoek or yellowtail.

The west coast is also well known for big game fishing at Dassen Gat which is about 36NM west of Yzerfontein.This hole is a massive crevice in the ocean bed where the depth suddenly drops to 1200m and then almost 2000 metres in “the ear” (an area shaped like an ear).

The Gat is well known for big eye and bluefin tuna which are normally quite large as you move further north towards the pinnacle off Saldahana Bay. I have personally pulled in a 91kg big eye in this region and recently a bluefin of 88.7kg.We normally launch at about 5.30am in the summer — as soon as the sun produces enough light that we can avoid running into the many whales that frequent the waters around the island.

In good conditions it takes about two hours to get to the Gat and scan the area using a reliable AIS (Automatic Identification System) to spot stern trawlers or long liners.If there are ships in the area we normally ask the skipper on channel 10 what time his nets will come up,and if it’s only a few minutes time,we hang around pulling a few deep divers,a flippy floppy or a spreader bar or two.If we do pick up good marks on the fishfinder (normally as the net bag becomes visible),then we up our back lines and start stripping and chumming the water.

Perfect conditions at Dassen Gat are when the water is clear and turquoise coloured,and the water temperature is between 18- and 22°C.Also look out for swooping tuna ducks — Cape gannetts and the massive albatross.More importantly,keep an eye on the surface for breaching longfin or yellowfin tuna. That behaviour is quite common when they are in a feeding frenzy,and you can be guaranteed a strike under those conditions.

When you’re out in the deep it’s extra important that you are well prepared.Be positive and make sure your drags are set correctly in advance,put on your Black Magic harness and have all your tools ready.Make sure this includes a long knife to cut a wedge in the tuna’s head to expose the spinal cord cavity.Also make sure your reamer is at hand to slide down the spine of the fish to settle it and improve the quality of the flesh.Once the tuna is prepared and bled,place the carcass in the fish box with plenty of ice.That will ensure that the warm-blooded fish is rapidly cooled down and will also maintains the good texture and quality of the much sought after loin flesh.

In an upcoming edition of SKI-BOAT I will look at the area north of Yzerfontein towards Saldanha Bay, Langebaan lagoon and up to Lamberts Bay.

22 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023
An archive photo of Ryan Nienaber with a lovely yellowtail caught off Dassen Island.
SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 23
24 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 COMPETITION
Story by Bryan Jooste Photos by Kappie, OET participants and Ryan Hansen

BIGGER,better and greener — that was the long and short of the 2022 OET Bill- & Gamefish Tournament held at Sodwana Bay from 6 to 11 November.

The OET Committee were particularly pleased with the first prize they managed to secure — a 2006 series Boat from Blue Mile with two 115hp 4-stroke motors from Mercury,electronics and auto pilot from Garmin,outriggers from Shagstix and many more sponsors.This brought the value of the first prize to a staggering R1.1 million.They were also thrilled with the detailing Sunset Boats did on the prize boat before it went down to Sodwana Bay.

This wasn’t the end of the booty up for grabs — all the boats in the top ten received their fair share of fantastic prizes courtesy of the awesome OET sponsors who really put their hands deep into their pockets,helping the committee to garner prizes worth over R1.8 million.

Preparations for the 2022 OET started in March with many late night planning sessions by the OET committee.Entries came in fast and furious thanks to the fantastic first prize on offer.Online entries actually had to be closed earlier than expected due to a cap on the number of entries permitted by

iSimangaliso Wetland Parks,and boats had to be placed on a waiting list.

Another curve ball thrown the way of the committee was that Sodwana Bay Lodge has built new boat lockers on the grounds where the marquee is normally set up.We were moved to a new site that looked like a piece of the Sahara desert — there was no grass,no water,no electricity and no toilets,plus it was only accessible by four-wheel drive vehicles.

This was exactly where the spirit of the offshore anglers came into play,and plans were made to get the site habitable for the upcoming OET event.LOO- 4-U sponsored mobile toilets,but the best thing to come out of this predicament was the sponsorship from Victron South Africa.They installed a solar power system to power up the whole event which meant that for the first time ever in South Africa,a competition of this magnitude was completely run on power from the sun.This,combined with the fact that 99% of the craft at the 2022 OET were using 4-stroke motors and not the traditional 2-strokes,will make any bunny-hugger’s day.

Conditions in the bay were not the best because there had been some heavy rains and the lagoon opened up to the bay four days prior to the start of the OET.

Team Fishaholic takes the cake and the boat.

This meant we had a very small beach area to launch from,resulting in a bit of organised chaos on the first morning where only six boats could launch at any given time.The rest of the week the skippers,crew and beach control worked together like a well-oiled machine and boats were dropped and launched in record-breaking time.

We have to commend all the OET skippers for their top class work during launching and beaching,with no incidents reported for the entire week.Some boats had to wait longer than expected behind the backline before they could beach, but thankfully a few of the bigger boats had sound systems on board which you would normally find at a music festival and they were happy to entertain the waiting boats.Then there was also the Indian character taunting the anglers on the VHF radio and the stowaway cat,all of which kept the participants laughing.

A big thanks must go to Karl Bentley and everyone at Ezemvelo and iSimangaliso for their strict management of the marine protected area as well as the beach area.You guys made a world of difference.

Entertainment in the marquee during the daily weigh-in and prize giving was top notch thanks to Henk and his sister on the saxophone.Their entertainment and the daily videos, pictures,sponsor ads and scoring which were shown on the big LED screen really brought the tent to life.

Once again we had the Vodacom,Rooibaard and Ratel clothing photo competitions and the anglers blew us away with their beautiful pictures and one or two naught pics too. Mercury also had a photo competition this year with a mystery 60k prize.Another feature of the week that went down well was Rooibaard’s traditional prego braai on the Wednesday.All the anglers were spoiled with prego’s,chicken livers and pap,and we saw some guys literally wiping the pots clean with pieces of bread.

Considering the huge first place prize on offer,we decided to only have one prize structure,compared to the 2021 OET where 10kg and 37kg line class prize structures were used.This was done to give all the anglers an equal opportunity to compete for the boat.

During the week some stunning dorado and wahoo were brought to the scale.Dawie Saaiman on Go Fish caught a beautiful 22.8kg wahoo,and Abie Pansergrouw on Jorrie caught a 16.9kg dorado,but they were no match for the 27.4kg Calcutta wahoo caught by Reynard Roberts fishing on Online.Well done on your beautiful wahoo and your R60k winnings,Reynard.

All protected species were safely released during the week and only 81 gamefish were brought to the scale.

Billfish were in plentiful supply,with hook ups being called almost continuously,but getting these beauties to the boats turned out to be very frustrating.

In the end nine black marlin,21 blue marlin,three shortbill spearfish,14 striped marlin and three sailfish were safely released by the anglers during the OET tournament.Thursday was declared a blowout,and in the remaining four fishing days a total of 50 billfish were safely released,even though the sea was trying its best to keep the anglers from doing so.

It was clear from day one that the team on The Rebel were in it to win it,and they led the OET from the get go to. They managed to keep their lead up until Friday morning when things started to heat up between them and the team on Fishaholic. It was a tense day and the two teams were neck and neck all the way to lines up...

There was even more at stake than the beautiful prize boat ...At the opening night’s skippers’briefing,all the boats were put on auction,with all the money from the winning

• Albatros • Anonymous • Bite Me • • B.O.L.S Hengelklub • Buco Hardware • Centre Engineering • • Close Up Mining • Cross Country Insurance Consultants • Daga Boat Angling Club DBA • Eventus Sitrus • • Eversure • Fishing Pro Shop • Garmin • Gearbox & Diff King • Grimbeek Taxidermy • Heyshope Hengelklub • • Hoedspruit Diepsee Hengelklub • Hoedspruit Spares • Isuzu Trucks • Jack Daniels • Jean Meintjies Metal Sculptures • • Leatherbacks Restaurant & Magnum Charters • Mafuta Angling Supplies • Mapa Professional • Mass Hire • WITH THANKSFOR SPONSORSHIP

bids going into a kitty.Whoever “bought”the winning boat at the auction would take home close to half a million in winnings,thanks to Chris Rothman’s brilliant organisation of the auction.

It turned out that between the two teams that were in contention for overall victory,one of them did not buy their boat at the auction and the other did.Both teams gave it their best on the last day,but one of them managed to release three billfish that day to secure the victory.Even better for them was the fact that they also bought their own boat at the auction!

Congratulations to Team Fishaholic on winning the 44th OET Bill- & Gamefish Tournament.The win secured them ownership of that beautiful Blue Mile 2006 series boat with more than enough power from the 115hp Mercury motors. You guys had an awesome comeback during the week,taking the victory when it counted the most,and you got the spoils from the auction on top of that! Well done to The Rebel on fighting to the last and securing second place.

An enormous vote of thanks goes to all the OET sponsors — without you it would not be possible to host these competitions.

Some of the prizes handed out to the top ten boats were Pulsator and Tropical Dream lure packs,Jack Daniels Hampers,Nguni skins,fishing gear from Fishing Pro Shop,a National Luna fridge from McGee Ford,boat insurance for a year from Cross Country,accommodation from Camp Ross Ramos in

Mozambique,Barra Lodge,Certainty Charters and Phumlani Lodge,chargers from Hoedspruit Spares,and then other prizes from the big boys like Garmin,Blue Mile,Rutherford Marine/Mercury,Cross Country,Shagstix Outriggers and many more.A very big thank you to all the cash sponsors too.We cannot hand out cash prizes and pay for expenses without your contributions!

Well done and thank you to all the teams — big and small — that took part in the 2022 OET Bill- & Gamefish Tournament.All the teams played the game to the best of their ability,and the camaraderie we saw was incredible. There were a lot of smaller gamefish boats this time around, and we will look at increasing our prizes for the gamefish at the 2023 tournament.

One would have to look very far to get better,more skilled and more disciplined skippers than what we had at the 2022 OET.Well done to all of you;the OET committee would be honoured to have all of you back in 2023.

We must also thank the dignitaries for taking the time and going to sea with us, competing against us and applauding the winners with us:Chris Schorn (SADSAA President),Nick Nel (SADSAA Tournaments Officer) and Phillip Marx (SASACC Vice President).We appreciate you joining us and we won’t take no for an answer in 2023.

See you all in Sodwana from 5 to 10 November 2023 at the 45th OET Bill- & Gamefish Tournament!

• McGee & Co Lydenburg • MCON Construction •Mega Lube • Mercury • Mojo & Squidnation Teazers • Na-Na’s • • Pencox Auto-Air • ProFit Safety Footwear • Pulsator Lures • Rooibaard • Rooikat Wholesale Liquor • • Ross Ramos Camp • Rothman Motors Ermelo • Safari & Outdoor • Sea Pike Hengelklub • Shagstix • Ski-Boat magazine • • Sodwana Hengelklub • Specialised Security Services • Sunset Boats & Accessories • Taratibo • Tropical Dream Tackle • • Van Dyk Pharmaceuticals • Victron Energy • Vodacom • Whitaker & Sons • Willem Pretorius • Zizwe • WITH THANKSFOR
TOPTENTEAMS — OVERALL 1. Fishaholic . . . . . . 1 219.8 points 2. The Rebel . . . . . . .889.0 points 3. Fish4Fun . . . . . . . .514.6 points 4. C-Cruiser . . . . . . . .456.1 points 5. Against All Odds . . .454.0 points 6. Goloza . . . . . . . . . .453.0 points 7. Little Joey . . . . . . . .451.0 points 8. Maestro . . . . . . . . .414.0 points 9. Sick Leave . . . . . . .335.7 points 10. Ripshore . . . . . . . .290.0 points
All the OET superheroes who successfully caught and released their billfish.
The Rebel Team congratulated by Chris Rothman. Third placed Team Fis4Fun, with Bill Harrison from Natal Caravans and Marine.


Targeting KZN’s reef dwellers

IF I had a rand for every person who asked if we could please try and catch a rockcod on a bottomfishing charter trip,I’d have quite a few rands stashed away! There is good reason for their popularity,and it mainly comes down to their delicious white flesh that can be turned into some of the yummiest dishes around.It is certainly one of my favourite eating fish and is extremely popular all over the world.

In our warmer KwaZulu-Natal coastal waters we are blessed with a healthy population of rockcod (many of which are endemic),both in terms of their numbers,as well as the variety of species we can catch.Given that some of these species grow rather large,there is always the added excitement of having a real giant of the deep grabbing your bait.

The most popular target species from a ski-boater’s point of view are yellowbelly rockcod,white edged rockcod (Captain Fine) and catface rockcod.These three are the most common ones encountered,but there are dozens of rockcod species that one can,and most likely will,encounter over the years if you spend time fishing for them.

All of them can be found from shallow to deep water reefs,although the catface rockcod is seldom caught deeper than around 50m of depth,and the Captain Fine is seldom caught deeper than in 100m of water,whereas the yellowbelly can be encountered slightly deeper.

They aren’t called rockcod for nothing — these guys really love rocks.By rocks,I mean jagged reef,caves and big structure where they spend the majority of the day skulking and resting.If your sinker is getting hung up and snagged on bottom reef,you are probably in the right place.

The other thing rockcod really like is a nice big juicy bait.Fishing for them is not finesse fishing,and although they will snack on smaller baits,the majority of fish will be caught when you are actively baiting for them.The good news is that you don’t need anything special to target them,as live bait,dead bait,chokka,cutlets and fillets are all very effective for them — provided they are big and bulky with a little inherent movement.

Big baits mean big hooks,so gear up accordingly.The rockcod species all have giant mouths relative to their size, enabling them to easily inhale big baits and hooks.My go-to hook when targeting rockcod is a Mustad Kendal Round 9/0 or 10/0 as this hook has a nice wide gape and long shank enabling me to build up a good sized bait without overcrowding the hook point.

If you are a fan of circle hooks (which I am),go big (16/0 minimum),but be careful when building your bait and keep as much of that hook point exposed as you possibly can,or you may end up just pulling the hooks straight back out of the fish’s mouth,with the hook unable to do what it is meant to do.

My favourite rocky baits are a flapped mackerel or a dead mozzie/chokka tentacle combo,or a fillet bait/chokka tentacle combo.All of these baits share two things in common:they are large,with plenty of bulk and “flavour”and have good movement to lure in a fish.

A bait that Captain Fine in particular really enjoy is a dead sand soldier with a few slices cut into its flanks revealing some flesh and scent.The good thing about this bait is that it is also very hardy and doesn’t easily get pecked apart by smaller fish or pulled off the hook,which allows sufficient time for that rockcod you are looking for to find your bait.

I very seldom only fish with a single hook when targeting rockcod,as they are very inquisitive fish,and you need to tempt them to leave cover.I usually have one or two smaller hooks/baits above my big hook.The commotion of other species attacking the baits may just be enough to get that rocky to come and take a look,and when he sees that delicious big bottom bait,he may not be able to resist.

A charter guest on board Stubb’Sea, Sias Meyer with a lovely Captain Fine rockcod.

SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 31

Regarding terminal tackle,don’t skimp on your mono hook snoot.Nothing less that .80,but 1mm mono is recommended.Not only do rockies have rows of sharp,sandpaperlike teeth which abrades light line,but they also often back into their holes and caves after being hooked,and you need some protection should your line be dragged over the reef.

Average size rockcod are not spectacular fighters.Yes,they give a decent encounter of themselves just after being

hooked,with a few attempted runs,but once you have them a few metres above the reef,they loose energy,and one simply needs to take one’s time and bring them up.

They have a very distinctive feeling on the line as they open their huge mouths,which provides quite a bit of resistance,but with very little head shaking which is common with most other bottom fish species.It’s akin to the feeling of reeling up a bucket full of water or sand.

Keep a rig like this onboard for releasing bottomfish.

Having said that,I’ve been lucky to catch a few large yellowbellies over the years,and when they get to 15kg-plus, they give a very decent account of themselves,stubbornly refusing to leave the reef and making you hold hard and gain a turn of line at a time until they begin to tire.

I have always battled to nail down specific rockcod feeding patterns and habits,as there appears to be no apparent pattern to me.There are days and even weeks where you go without catching any,and then there are days —particularly with Captain Fine rockcod — that they feed aggressively and in decent numbers.There is some scientifically monitored seasonal movement to these fish,mostly associated with spawning aggregations etc,but there are days when it’s as if someone pressed the “feed”button and they are present and aggressive,and then there are days not far apart when they have utter lockjaw.

Either way,don’t let that put you off.Keep at it,keep sending those big baits down into big structure,and I guarantee you will get some good rockies over time.

Rockcod are a critical part of our reef ecosystems,so let’s take a quick look at their status.Not only are some of our rockcod species endemic to our waters,meaning that we are solely responsible for their future wellbeing,but they are a slow growing and slow maturing fish and are mostly listed as Vulerable.

SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 33
The autor’s suggested trace. The author shows how to corectly hold a Captain Fine rockcod, by cutting a slit under the throat with your knife tip.

No guessing why they are called yellowbelly rockcod. Gerhard posing with a beautifully coloured specimen.

I mentioned at the start of this article that they are relatively plentiful at certain times and places,but the species biomass is estimated to be only a small fraction of what it once was,so don’t be reckless with your efforts.Ensure you’re aware of bag and size limits,and if you have your quota of rockcod,rather move away from that particular reef.

Releasing rockcod is not a simple task because they often blow their swim bladder and eyes when they’re brought up from the deep.If you are a serious bottomfisherman,you should always carry a deep drop release weight setup for releasing fish on the boat,and be familiar with how to quickly use it to get a fish back down safely.

Finally.two quick personal tips from me when it comes to rockies.Firstly,never put your fingers into their gills or mouths.Their gills have a few sets of extremely sharp inward

When a yellowbelly gets to this size you’ll definitely feel it properly on the end of your line.

facing rakers,and once your fingers have entered,you will battle to remove them without some extremely painful cuts and slices to your hand.It’s really important to brief kids about this,as often their first instinct is to reach for the mouth or gills to pick up the fish.

The best way to handle a rockcod that you intend to keep, is to either gaff it in the mouth and handle it on the gaff,or else cut a small slit with the tip of your knife through the soft skin under its throat.You can then insert a finger through that cut and use as it a grip to handle the fish.

Secondly,rockcod have large bones and rib cage structures,so meat yield is rather low compared to other species. Take your time with your knife work to maximise your meat yield because wasting meat as delicious as a rocky’s is sacrilege.

34 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023


2023 DBSC Festival update

HILTON Kidger co-convener of the Durban Ski-Boat Festival spoke to Mark Wilson about their plans for the 2023 Durban Ski Boat Festival and what anglers can look forward to.

MW: Following a very successful 2022 festival what’s up your sleeve for 2023?

HK: Firstly,the dates are from Friday 28 April to Sunday 30 April 2023 and please remember that Monday 1 May is Workers Day which we will use as an extra day if Saturday and Sunday are bad weather days.Also note that Thursday 27 April is another public holiday — Freedom Day — so it’s an ideal opportunity for “out of towners”to cross the river and come and enjoy some good old Durban Ski-Boat Club hospitality and the warmth of Durbs.

MW: Now that we are up to date on the dates, let’s look at what’s in store for the anglers and their families.

HK: To start with,Yamaha have upgraded the engines on the prize boat from 60hp 4-stroke motors to 70hp motors. That means that the first prize for the biggest ’cuda is valued at R690000. That is a massive offering.The Sea Cat 520 is beautifully balanced with the incredible thrust the Yamaha 70s are renowned for.The winner also receives a year’s insurance cover from Club Marine.

With Yamaha’s further expansion into the marine market,they have appointed SMG as a regional outlet.If you are a ski-boater you really must visit their new flagship shop at Cornubia where Steve Bailey,the GM, and his team will welcome you.Besides the incredible range of products,they also have an amazing workshop with the talent to look after all your boating needs.SMG is really a powerful compliment to the Yamaha brand.

Other prizes have also been upgraded to bring huge value for the other positions on the leader board.For

example,Lowrance are putting up their latest combo fishfinder and GPS with a value of R28000.Warn Winch who have been a supporter of this comp for 20 years will offer their 8000lb low profile winch which is part of their EVO range.This range has no equal and the 10000 pounder was voted best winch in the world.That really makes a statement!

There will be freezers from Defy and special outdoor-type National Lunar freezers supplied by Natal Caravans and Marine.

Natal Caravans and Marine,who have been in business for over 60 years, have also been a supporter of ours since the beginning over 20 years ago. They were instrumental in changing the first prize which was a 40hp motor, to a ski-boat with twin Yamaha engines.

It’s a fact that 84% of ski-boaters own some serious camping and caravan equipment,so you really must visit their outfit in Pinetown to see such their complete range of outdoor equipment. Make sure your credit card has capacity, because you’re going to be tempted on many fronts!

We’ll also have air conditioners from Gauche Air and tools from Adendorff Machinery Mart up for grabs,and there will be plenty of Windhoek Draught on tap to quench the anglers’thirst.

We are also going to ensure that all our juniors and ladies have a bigger bite at the cherry in that the first ten fish by weight in those categories will go into a lucky draw that will have four highvalue prizes in each division.This will add a lot more excitement for our juniors and ladies.As you well know, this festival is also about family as much as it is about experienced anglers,and anyone can win the main prize!

There will also be live entertainment all weekend and lucky draw prizes.

MW: How many boats and anglers did you have in 2022 and what are your

expectations for 2023?

HK: In 2022 we had 217 boats and 640 anglers.Given the circumstances after Covid we were delighted with such strong support.For 2023 we have held our entry fees at 2022 rates and expect even better support.We expect around 250 boats which equates to around 750 anglers.We can quite easily manage up to 300 boats.

MW How do you handle all these boats so efficiently?

HK: The short answer is,we don’t — the CMH Group handle this like pros with their Nissan Navaras fitted with Warn winches.Their drivers are beachtrained and provide a polished performance.Besides having great vehicles, their commitment to us over the years has been amazing.We are also well supported by Wesbank who offer great rates to our competitors and have put a lot of support into our festivals and angling across the board.

MW: What are the two things that really stand out for you about this event?

HK: Firstly the time commitment of many sponsors,staff and members who give up their family time over a long weekend to ensure our anglers have a great time on the water and their families an enjoyable long weekend at the DSBC Festival.Secondly,the camaraderie of the anglers who really enjoy their time together and bring a lot of fun and purpose to this event.Thank you to every participant — you are amazing! It is really your festival,and we are privileged to be your hosts.

Oh,I nearly forgot — we have sent a special invitation to the ’cuda in Moçambique to join us for an all expenses paid long weekend at the end of April.Their head honcho replied immediately that they can’t wait to taste our fresh maas banker,shad,and Natal sardines.

He also hoped we had enough freezer space to keep them cool!



MERRY Christmas and Happy New Year,depending on when you get to read this during your holidays! It is my sincere hope that you all get to spend some time with family and friends over this festive season and — it goes without saying — catch some fish.


This has been a particularly interesting season for safety,with a few issues being dealt with by our safety officers which have not always been well accepted by our fellow boating enthusiasts.

SADSAA is an Authorised Agency of the South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) which is the Department of Transport’s designated custodian and enforcer of all laws relating to our waterways and the use of such by boats big and small.Over the past year or two,SAMSA has been on a drive to ensure that the construction of our small vessels is in line with the standards that they set and which are enshrined in the Merchant Shipping Act of 1951 and,more specifically,the Merchant Shipping (National Small Vessel Safety) Regulations of 2007.

comply,then the safety officer must refuse to do the survey until this has been remedied.

This has led to some consternation amongst the small vessel boating fraternity.However,this is the law and we must adhere to it,so your patience and understanding is asked for.We thank those who have dealt with the matter already.

The other thing I wish to highlight is that SADSAA has many examiners offering skippers courses for COCs who are doing a great job teaching all who wish to add to their skills.However,as with many things,we’ve also had to deal with our fair share of those who do not go by the book.We have recently come across some “examiners”who purport to operate under the SADSAA banner,but who are not qualified or have had their qualifications withdrawn, and therefore may not offer these courses.

All our surveyors have been on Built-in-Buoyancy refresher courses,which our safety department has so ably conducted.My thanks to our National Safety Officer,Carl Krause,and his two deputies,Jan de Jonge and Riyazul Hussain,who have taken an enormous amount of personal time to travel around the country doing multiple courses.

The crucial part of these courses,and the part that has left a few of our members a little frustrated,is the Buoyancy Certificate (BC) that must accompany every vessel along with its Certificate of Fitness (COF),the radio operator’s licence and of course the skipper’s ticket or Certificate of Competency (COC).

This BC must include certain information,diagrams and photographs,without which it is invalid.Until now,many safety officers have used their discretion with regard to the BC,and most have been accepted,provided they were issued by a competent person.

This is no longer tolerated by SAMSA,and all safety officers MUST apply Marine Notice 8 of 2012.If a BC does not

On the opposite page we have included the names of all the safety officers operating under the SADSAA banner,as well as all the SAMSA-appointed SADSAA examiners.Should you be wishing to either survey your vessel or do a skipper’s course,please refer to this list to establish if the SO or examiner is in fact accredited by SADSAA.These names are also all published in Marine Notices issued by SAMSA which are continually being updated,the latest of which are MN 13 of 2021 and MN 14 of 2021.

If you have any further queries in this regard please feel to contact our Safety Office via email <>.Our Safety Secretary,Lynnette Adams,will be more than happy to assist.


Now,on a slightly different note,we wish our Protea team of Charles du Plessis (captain),George Breedt,Francois Bezuidenhout and Abed Khan,all the very best as they leave shortly to fish in the IGFA Light Tackle Open in Palm Beach Shore,Florida,USA.Do us proud gentlemen and have a great tournament.

As we go into this new year,we can still look forward to a few months of great fishing weather.We wish all well for 2023 - may your hooks always be sharp,and you knots strong.Happy boating and tight lines.

Keep up to date with all the SADSAA news by visiting our website or our facebook page @sadeepseaanglingassociation

40 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023



Stephen Bodill072 434 3340C - RChristmasvale SBC

Gary Lunt084 495 9891B - REast London

Dean Dustan082 651 1075B - RGonubie MC

Deon Kretschmer082 552 6752B - RXhora SBC

Michael Rooney082 376 3213B - RXhora SBC

Wayne Sparg073 155 7999B - REast London SBC

John Luef082 898 2316B - RKwelera SBC

Craig Rance082 323 4322C - RKei Mouth

Clint Gower082 771 9206C - RKei Mouth

Greg Kretzmann083 932 2159C - RKei Mouth

Gerhardus Hechter072 119 5591C - RTshani SBC

Clint Lentz043 683 7250C - RCintsa

Andre Eleftheriou043 642 2783B - RKei Mouth

Willie Basson078 953 0867B - RTshani SBC

John Rance082 321 6136B - RKei Mouth


Karel de Jaeger072 462 1729C - RPort Alfred River

Christopher Hattingh083 310 8120B - RSt Francis SBC

Neil Richardson082 804 7414B - RSt Francis

Keith Schmidt072 178 0806B - RPEDSAC

Hartley Timm084 451 0256B - RPort Alfred River

Bruce Thompson082 809 4303B - RDiaz

Rian Raubenheimer082 822 3202B - RJeffrey’s Bay

Barry du Plessis082 771 1668B - RSt Francis Bay

Timothy Christy082 569 3750B - RSt Francis SBC

Jan de Jonge082 456 5727B - RSt Francis SBC


Adam van Tonder082 775 4219B - RHarrismith

Jan Vermeulen082 676 8347B - R101 SBC Welkom

Andre Pawson082 564 8044C - RBloemfontein

Erwin Rohrbeck082 578 7831B - RBloemfontein

Timothy Leach082 805 2677C - R101 SBC Welkom

Meagan Leach079 898 9375C - R101 SBC Welkom

Robert Unwin082 930 2651RKroonstad Aquatic

Jaco van der Merwe084 771 3135C - RRiemland

Hennie de Waal083 391 8129B - RGariep Dam


Jacobus du Toit083 465 6440B - RKrugersdorp

Andrew Bowie082 330 6317B - RKrugersdorp

Johannes van Zyl073 267 6424B - RKrugersdorp

Vanadevi Shunmugam082 781 3885E - RKrugersdorp

George Parish083 292 2666C - RKrugersdorp

Pieter Theron082 565 9748C - RKrugersdorp

Markus Fourie083 225 6819B - RKrugersdorp

Johan le Roux083 302 6837B - RKrugersdorp

Johan Pumphrett083 429 3371B - RKrugersdorp

Ian Hurlimann082 855 1516B - RKrugersdorp


Christo Prinsloo078 803 7919RPretoria

Kevin Plath082 392 7985E - RVaal

Damon Cafetzoglou082 440 5959D - RSandton

Gert Coetzee082 805 5915C - RBloemhof

Gareth Westerdale083 325 4944RPretoria

Christian Jansen082 413 6407B - RNigel

Ester Jansen083 260 4617RNigel

Pieter Nel083 227 4269B-RPretoria

Linda Cafetzoglou082 440 5959RSandton


Mark Swart060 912 1093B - RNewcastle/Ultricht

Chez Thackwray083 324 7394B - RBallito

Robert Shepard082 312 7000B - RUmhlanga

Daniel Hattingh083 284 9104C - RUmkomaas

Leon Garbade071 682 6433B - RShelly Beach

Michael Davis076 052 4309B - RMarlin

John Saville082 920 4953B - RPennington

Angus Patterson082 875 5548B - RNambiti

Mohamed Khan084 737 5555C - RNeptune

Willem Venter083 723 8590C - RPoint Yacht Club

Robin Duvenhage083 785 3415C - RBobbies

Francois Beukes079 508 2510B - RNatal Rod & Reel

Wade Forrest061 019 2496B - RWarnadoone

Mohammed Hasham082 868 9862B - RBluff Yacht Club

Troy Crauvin083 301 4537B - RWarnadoone

Johannes de Jager 084 300 0971C - RNewcastle

Anthony Barth083 557 3177B - RDurban

Michael Fraser082 460 3424B - RInjambili

Johannes v Heerden082 573 7649B - RBallito SBC

Roger Laxson072 217 0915B - RDurban SBC

Raylene Griffiths084 768 1750C - RDurban Undersea

Jan Harm du Plessis084 549 8210B - RZinkwazi

Paul Forder082 727 8658B - RMidlands

Michael vd Westhuizen 0827706692C - RBlythedale Beach

John Boswarva082 568 7330C - RPompano Angling

Ronald Windsor060 520 1950B - RDurban SBC

Anthony Molgora082 895 5904B - RDurban SBC

Craig Grossett0724340360B - RUmdloti SBC

Hermanus Fourie 082 882 7540B - RAmanzimtoti

Aziz Khan083 273 9744B - R Park Rynie

Gregory Massey083 415 7806B - RIsipingo

Anton Rossouw082 255 4549B - RHibberdene

Cornelius van Zyl082 856 0304B - RHibberdene

William Cooper084 755 8521B - RBlythedale

Anthony Norman082 822 6427B - RGreytown

Graham vd Wath082 824 7427C - RUmdloti

Reinhart Kerkhof083 449 8337B - RMidlands

Gavin le Roux083 655 4776C - RPennington

Benjamin Mundel083 308 8448B - RPompano

Riyazul Hussain083 582 4418B - RUmkomaas

Graham Mealin083 278 6492B - RNatal Rod & Reel

Petrus Botes083 609 8399B - RZinkwazi

Lance Harrison082 774 7773B - RUmzimkulu

Johan Kuit083 776 7409B - RHibiscus

Julius Kun082 447 3240B - RBallito

Pieter van Niekerk083 788 0862B - RHibiscus

Anthony Shuttleworth 083 635 9119B - RUmzimkulu

John Weineck082 303 5718B - RMidlands

Trevor Puren072 231 6135RGreytown

Willem Fourie083 305 3096B - RGlenmore

Ryan Hansen083 225 6565C - RInjambili

Dudley Boswell 082 446 0018C - RDurban SBC

Michael Barnes082 650 0123B - RWestbrook

Derrick Ferreira082 651 0253B - RDurban SBC

Craig Hulbert082 454 1150B - RDurban SBC

Hilton Kidger083 625 1079B - RDurban SBC

John Roberts083 274 3035B - RDurban SBC

Edwin Seeley082 554 1502B - RDurban SBC


Stephanus Wassenaar083 272 0663B - RRichards Bay Mark Beyl082 610 0102B - RAssembly/R’Bay

Berno Phillipson0735968288B - RSt Lucia

Trevor Harvey082 822 6485B - RMeerensee

Grant Harrison083 424 9688B - RCape Vidal

Peter Nice083 339 0651B - RRichards Bay

Jan Harm du Plessis084 549 8210B - RLobotes

Bret Hume083 309 9206C - RMapelane

Louis Lombaard083 268 7090B - RRichards Bay

Phillipus Myburgh082 686 8053B - RMeerensee

Rodney Nicholson083 587 3990B - RUmlalazi

George v Schalkwyk078 286 3573B - RUmlalazi

Trevor Goddard082 434 9381B - RMeerensee

Gerhardus Delport073 312 3194B - RRichards Bay

Cornelius Kleinschmidt 084 456 7829B - RRichards Bay


Cornelius Pretorius083 336 9456B - RSoutpansberg SBC

Paul du Toit083 398 1456B - RLetaba

Sydney Swart082 829 5086C - RLetaba

Johan Scholtz083 268 3619B - RKoraal

Johan Scholtz082 467 2606B - RKoraal

SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 41

Marietjie Grater076 758 2381C - RYsterburg


Andre Pizer082 874 2352B - RSodwana

Pieter Jordaan083 227 8418B - RAlbatross

Willem Pretorius082 337 2852B - RAlbatross

Coenraad Meyer082 414 1192B - RHeyshope

Johannes Fourie082 455 3373B - RHoedspruit

Johan Schmidt060 900 5496B - RKoning Makriel

Gary Larkan083 631 2603B - RLaba Witrivier

Louis Strydom083 258 6736C - RKoning Makriel

Johannes Venter083 762 6930B - RTaritibo

Jan Strydom082 853 6758B - RTaratibo

Adriaan Ackerman0836252414B - RNelspruit District

Colin Tapson082 418 7660B - RNelspruit District

Johannes Kruger082 462 7851C - RBols Lydenburg

Johannes Hattingh083 441 7506C - RSea Pike SBC

Tertius Botha082 428 6592B - R Dagga Boat Springs


Frans van Niekerk082 807 2720C - RNortherns

Pieter Venter082 334 8190B - ROlifants Club


Gerhardus Engelbrecht 082 809 1253B - RNW Skiboat Club

Otto Lessing082 467 1944C - RPlatinum SBC

Marhtinus Alberts082 323 4210B - RKlerksdorp SBC


Christopher Schorn083 284 5969B - RPlettenberg Bay

Chantelle Kieser079 775 7070B - RPlettenberg Bay

Clinton Bamber082 729 6474B - RPlettenberg Bay

Niekie Liebenberg082 378 5255B - RGeorge

Johann Crouse073 301 9595B - RGeorge

Johanne Steyn072 408 6099C - RStilbaai

Johan de Lange072 201 3195C - RWitsand

Johan Mostert082 785 7687E - RMossel Bay

Waldo Oosthuizen083 380 1357B - RMossel Bay

Morney Kleinhans082 828 1766B - RMossel Bay


Carl Krause083 700 8593B - REast Rand

Clayton Krause083 235 1159B - REast Rand

Lynette Adams083 588 0217B - REast Rand

Andre v Helsdingen082 445 1543C - RMeyerton

Jason Hillcoat082 468 4747B - RPretoria

Neil Barker083 640 3667B - REast Rand

Bernardus van Zyl072 234 0633B - RSandton

Phillip Jones082 947 9821E - RMidrand

Frank de Oliviera083 377 6570C - REast Rand

Quentin Clark082 851 6790C - RKrugersdorp

Mandy Webster083 602 8254B - RFourways

Leon Orsmond083 658 9320B - REast Rand

Riaan Sullivan083 601 6663B - RKrugersdorp

Beatrix de Kok083 290 8940B - R East Rand

Ralph Jones071 418 2551B - RMidrand


Norman Kemm071 898 2470D - ROverberg

Andre Botha082 561 2705C - RDorado

Hermanus Botha082 561 0997B - RDorado

Brent Miller071 143 7454B - R

Pieter Welgemoed083 731 1146B - RGordons Bay

Wean Welgemoed073 066 0131B - RGordons Bay

Pieter Welgemoed083 731 1146B - RGordon’s Bay

Jason Lagan082 892 7883B - RCape Boat

Ryno Strydom082 418 4735B - RGBBAC

Adolf Arenhold 083 229 2374B - RCape Boat

Trevor Ashington082 953 4735B - RCape Boat



Gary Lunt084 495 9891Gonubie


Jannie de Jonge082 456 5727St Francis Bay

Barry du Plessis082 771 1668Umkomaas


Adam van Tonder082 775 4219Harrismith

Timothy Leach082 805 2677Welkom Megan Leach079 898 9375Welkom


Jacobus du Toit083 465 6440Wahoo

Andrew Bowie082 330 6317Wahoo George Parish083 292 2666Dorado


Abrie Coetzee082 805 5915Kimberley Christo Prinsloo078 803 7919Griquas Piet Nel083 227 4269Griquas


Leon Garbade060 912 1093Shelly Beach

Michael Davis083 324 7394Marlin

John Saville082 920 4953Pennington Angus Patterson082 875 5548Nambiti

Paul Forder082 727 8658Midlands

Ronnie Windsor082 895 5904Durban

Herman Fourie083 273 9744Park Rynie Johan Kuit082 447 3240Ballito Anthony Shuttleworth 082 303 5718Midlands Riaz Hussain083 278 6492Durban Jan Harm du Plessis084 549 8210Zinkwazi Troy Cauvin083 301 4537Warnadoone Wade Forrest061 019 2496Neptune Johannes v Heerden082 573 7649Umlalazi


Fanie Wassenaar083 272 0663Richards Bay Marius Vermaak082 897 6458Mapelane Gerry Delport073 312 3194Richards Bay


Johan Scholtz (Jnr)083 268 3619Polokwane Johan Scholtz (Snr)082 467 2606Polokwane Marietjie Grater076 758 2381Polokwane


Andre Pizer082 874 2352Pongola Johannes Fourie082 455 3373Hoedspruit Johan Schmidt060 900 5496Witbank Gary Larkin083 631 2603White River


Gerhardus Engelbrecht 082 809 1253North West


Christopher Schorn083 284 5969Plettenberg Bay Clinton Bamber082 729 6474Plettenberg Bay


Carl Krause083 700 8593East Rand Lynette Adams083 588 0217East Rand


Pieter Welgemoed (Snr) 083 731 1146Cape Town Wean Welgemoed073 066 0131Cape Town Pieter Welgemoed (Jnr) 083 731 1146Cape Town

42 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023




11 - 17 February 2023Two Oceans Marlin TournamentStruisbaaiSuidpunt


2 - 5 March 2023SADSAA Gamefish InterprovincialPenningtonPSBC 2 - 5 March 2023SADSAA Billfish InterprovincialRichards BayRBSBC 8 - 12 March 2023Cape to RioCape VidalAmatikulu SBC 17 - 20 March 2023Ratel Ladies Deep Sea Fishing CompSt LuciaSt Lucia 20 - 25 March 2023SADSAA Bottomfish NationalsKenton-on-SeaDiaz 27 - 31 March 2023 Assembly Gamefish Classic & InterclubXai Xai,MoçambiqueAssembly DSAC 29 - 31 March 2023IGFA Light Tackle TournamentMiamiProtea


3 - 5 April 2023Sodwana Gamefish CompetitionSodwana BaySSK 5 - 8 April 2023SADSAA Junior Gamefish InterprovincialUmhlangaUSBC 22 - 29 April 2023Gordon’s Bay Offshore ClassicGordon’s BayGBBAC 25 - 28 April 2023SADSAA Tuna InterprovincialMillers PointCape Boat 25 - 30 April 2023Tuna Challenge 2023St FrancisPSFSB 29 April -1 May 2023Durban Ski-Boat Club FestivalDurbanDSBC


1 - 5 May 2023Sodwana Marlin InvitationalSodwana BaySSK 5 - 7 May 2023SADSAA All StarsDurbanDSBC 8 - 12 May 2023SADSAA All InlandSodwana BayMDSAA 15 - 20 May 2023SADSAA Tuna NationalsHout BayABC


4 - 9 June 2023SADSAA Gamefish NationalsMapelaneMapelane 12 - 17 June 202371st Ernest Hemingway International Billfish CubaProtea 13 - 16 June 2023SADSAA 4kg Light Tackle InterprovincialWPDSAA 17 - 23 June 2023ILTTAPanamaProtea 27 June - 2 July 2023SADSAA Junior Gamefish NationalsShelly BeachSBSBC

JULY 4 - 8 July 2023SADSAA Bottomfish InterprovincialKleinbaaiOBC 4 - 8 July 2023Shelly Beach Tuna BonanzaShelly BeachSBSBC 7 - 8 July 2023EFSA European Species ChampionshipWeymouthProtea 12 - 15 July 2023Tuna InterprovincialShelly BeachSBSBC

AUGUST 2 - 5 August 2023SADSAA All Coastal InterprovincialRichards BayRBSBC 10 - 13 July 2023SADSAA Junior Bottomfish InterprovincialDurbanDSBC

SEPTEMBER 1 - 2 September 2023Queens of the Ocean Ladies BonanzaSt LuciaSt Lucia 16 - 23 September 2023EFSA Boat and Line Championship IrelandProtea

OCTOBER 2 - 6 October 2023SADSAA Junior Bottomfish NationalsDurbanDSBC 9 - 13 October 2023SADSAA Light Tackle Billfish InterprovincialSodwana BayNGDSAA

NOVEMBER 5 - 10 November 2023OET Bill- & Gamefish TournamentSodwanaMDSAA 13 - 18 November 2023Billfish 15000SodwanaDSBC 20 - 24 November 2023SADSAA Light Tackle Billfish NationalsSodwanaMDSAA 20 - 24 November 2023SADSAA Heavy Tackle Billfish NationalsSodwanaMDSAA

To get your competition added to our calendar email details to

SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 45
COMPETITION 2. 3. 1. 1. Lecia Steele with her 9.9kg wahoo. 2. Maretha van den Heever with a small fat tuna. 3.Olga Boschoff with a 5.76kg bonito. 4. Rachelle Botha with her sailfish ready for release. 5. Elra Lotz with the queenfish she caught and released. 4.5.

2022 Queens of the Ocean Competition

ROCK ’n roll was the theme of the 2022 Queens of the Ocean competition at St Lucia in early November,and King Neptune certainly stuck to the brief, with the 19 participating boats being rocked and rolled all over the ocean.

As one very experienced Durban skipper later said,“Ignorance is bliss!” He was fishing the Mapelane comp and

their boats didn’t even launch on the Friday due to the rough conditions.For many of the women fishing the Queens of the Ocean,this was their first time at sea or else their first surf launch,and they just assumed this was what the men dealt with regularly,so they pulled up their big girl panties and dealt with the boneshaking launches and rough fishing conditions.

The women were determined not to let King Neptune have the last say,and

set off merrily at sunrise on the overcast Friday morning.

Our crew onboard Free Spirit 2 was whooping with laughter as we rode out the rodeo of the launch — until a huge wave crashed over our open boat.Time to hold on a little tighter.

Once we were safely behind the backline,the gees started flowing,with ditties like “Vissie,vissie,byt vir my,ek will jou in my hatchie kry,” being sung by Natasha Herbst on Free Spirit 2

1. Claire Burger with a beaut of a tuna. 2. Fransien Myburg with a beautifully coloured dorado. 3.Fiona Hofman prepares to release a slinger. 4. Lindie Janse van Rensburg with her 11.5kg dorado. 5.The ladies on Pac Man were happy with their tuna. 2. 3. 1. 4.5.
48 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023

The skippers set off to their various hotspots,doing what they and their gillies could to get their team to win. After quickly sending down the yozuris for some livebait,our team set off to troll the ledge out at the 50m contour.

With the sounds of Modern Talking’s Atlantis is Calling playing loudly on the boat,a reel started singing and Larraine Powell soon landed a lovely 10.3kg yellowfin tuna and the lines went out again.Melandie Koekemoer was happy with her skipjack landed not long thereafter,but only until she realised it was another type of tuna and would not garner any extra points for the team. Natasha Herbst also suffered severe disappointment when the wahoo she was fighting bit off the line next to the boat, but we set off trolling again focused on landing another species.

At the 9am call up it was clear that some decent fish had been landed,but fishing was tough for everyone.A little later Reel McCoy announced they had a hookup with a sailfish.Cheers and congratulations rang out when they duly announced the safe release of the sailie — a first for angler Rachelle Botha.

With fish hard to come by even when we could see them on our sounder,our skipper Mike Leibrandt decided to head shallower and troll along the colour line in 25m of water. Even that didn’t produce anything more for us,and with the wind picking up and conditions deteriorating further,we called it a day at 12.30pm.

An influx of cold water had badly affected the fishing overall,and although they put in numerous hours trying all the tricks their skippers and gillies suggested,most of the 63 women fishing had a tough time finding fish that would

bite.Just 13 boats landed the 31 fish of nine species weighed on day one.

The star of the day was Lindie van Rensburg with an 11.5kg dorado — her first fish ever landed.Vanessa Saayman put in a good showing for her team on Vyfster,weighing an 8.18g dorado and a decent queen mackerel to add to the points they earned for the giant kingfish she released.

Lecia Steele’s 9.9kg wahoo raised more cheers,as did Larraine Powell’s yellowfin.

That night the rock ’n roll theme was truly on show as all the teams dressed up like the hard rockers they’d proved to be that day,and took to the dance floor to shake off any disappointment they’d felt out on the ocean.

On the Saturday morning the weather conditions started off a little better than Friday with sunshine gracing the tops of the waves,but predictions were that the wind would pick up and it would get rough later on.The women were not to be deterred — viskoors had set in and they were determined to try their best to catch the winning fish.

This time I was out on Ocean Commotion with skipper Jan Hofmeyer and the women in his care.Having launched through the morning mist as the sun was breaking through the clouds,we stopped just behind backline to hook livebait,and soon had a few maasbanker in the livewell and redeyes in the bucket.

Despite the big swell the crew was chirpy and ready to fine tune their fish luring songs.There was much talk of what secret fishing tactics had been overheard the night before and where the leading teams had been fishing,so we started fishing on the drift off

Mapelane Kop looking for snoek or queen mackerel.Fiona Hofmeyer soon landed a beautiful slinger which was released as it wouldn’t count,but at least the ice had been broken.

Drifting along the beautiful Zululand coastline featuring high dunes covered in indigenous forest,with clean turquoise waters breaking onto white sands,you could be forgiving for thinking you were in paradise where no evil could venture in.But that wasn’t true…

Just after 6am on Saturday our pumping music was harshly interrupted by a radio call that a boat had struck a sandbank while launching and was then flipped by a big wave.One of the women anglers was missing.All the boats in the area raced to help search.

Fortunately the NSRI had a team on the beach for the morning,and while their jetrib was patrolling the surf zone looking for the missing woman,other boats drove up and down the area with silent prayers going up for her to be found safe.A little while later cheers went up and tears flowed on all the boats when we heard she had been located under the boat and safely rescued after being there for 20 minutes.

The reality struck that sometimes we become complacent about heading out on the ocean,but that’s not an option, especially in such rough conditions.

Relieved that the emergency was over and a near tragedy averted,the boats went back to fishing with new vigour and a fresh appreciation for the fragility of life.

But the peace was not to last …

The NSRI duty team had just recovered from dealing with the first emergency when another call came in that a man who worked for one of the charter

Below: Maverick (left) took home the prize for best dressed rock ’n rollers while Ocean Commotion put in a great effort too. Still more catches from the determined women anglers working hard to put their teams in front.

operators had waded into the surf to help retrieve some rods from the capsized boat.He got caught in a rip current and was dragged under the waves.

The NSRI jetrib was dispatched to search for him and again all the nearby boats raced to help.This time there were only tears of sadness;despite an extensive search there was no sign of the man.

While the search for the missing swimmer was still underway another call came in … a boat that had joined in the search had lost power to one of its motors.The NSRI jetrib went out to collect the four anglers from the impaired boat and drop them on shore before standing by to ensure the skipper beached safely.

The morning had been a crystal clear depiction of why the NSRI is so desperately needed in South Africa.

The subdued anglers decided to continue fishing,taking every opportunity to live life to the max.However the fish too were subdued,and at the 11am callup very few boats had any weighable units to report.Still the women persevered,but when storm clouds started rolling in around noon and the wind picked up to 16 knots,fishing was called off.

A couple of hours later the crews gathered at the scales to eye out the competition.Just seven fish of four species were brought to the scales.Kayla Meiring’s 20.6kg yellowfin tuna was the clear winner of the day,but would the points from that and her big queenfish on day one be enough to clinch it for her?

At the prizegiving St Lucia Ski-Boat Club Chairman Mike Leibrandt offered condolences to the family and friends of the lost man and again thanked the NSRI for their incredible service.

St Lucia NSRI Station Commander Jan Hofmeyer took the opportunity to remind anglers of the importance of wearing life jackets properly,including using the strap that goes between the legs which will ensure the jacket does not get pulled off over your head in rough seas.

Vanessa Saayman’s great showing was overshadowed by Kayla Meiring’s two big fish and Kayla was crowned Queen of the Ocean for 2022.However,Vanessa’s catches helped TeamVyfster,secure the spot as top boat.Top junior angler was Lana Leibrandt who brought in four lovely fish.

Once Velia Tonkin and her organising committee did a sterling job with all the arrangements,and the closing festivities continued until the early hours,with all the women vowing to return next year with new tricks for enticing the sea to give up her treasures.

Next year’s Queens of the Ocean competition will take place on 1 and 2 September.For further information contact Velia Tonkin on <velianorman@>

• For more information on how to donate to NSRI visit support-us/donate

50 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023
Kayla Meiring’s 20.6kg yellowfin tuna helped her clinch the prize for top angler. Vyfster’s consistency paid off and they were the winning team at the 2022 Queens of the Ocean competition.

Kingfisher Award Application Form

I hereby apply for the Kingfisher Award in the category:

YOUR favourite offshore angling magazine, SKI-BOAT , in conjunction with The Kingfisher and the South African Deep Sea Angling Association, is proud to offer all South African ski-boaters the unique opportunity to win awards for excellence in angling.

All deep sea anglers who achieve laid down standards of excellence will be entitled to apply for the KINGFISHER AWARD.Upon ratification by a panel of adjudicators,the angler will receive a handsome digital certificate,suitably inscribed.

The Kingfisher Award will be made for fish caught in two sections:

1) Meritorious Fish

This award is for a fish that’s a memorable achievement for the angler,if not


There is no restriction on the number of awards which can be applied for. Award applicants must submit a photograph of the relevant fish with the application form and a photograph of the angler with the fish.

SKI-BOAT reserves the right to use the photograph as it sees fit.

Entries must be on the official form which is included in all issues of the magazine.

Entires must be received within 45 days of capture.

No witnesses of the catch are required. The award is made in the true spirit of sportsmanship and relies on the integrity of the angler to make a just claim. Aselection of award winners’names will be announced in future issues of SKIBOAT, along with relevant photographs. Award applicants should allow 30-45 days for processing of applications. There is no charge for Kingfisher Awards.

a personal best,and is not confined to the species listed below.

Tackle used is of no consideration here, the fish's weight being the main criterion.

2) Outstanding Catch

To satisfy the requirements for this award,anglers can catch any recognised fish species.As a guideline,the weight of that fish must equal or exceed the suggested weights below,or certain laid down fish weight:line class ratios.

Awards will be made in the following ratio categories:

3:1 – Bronze Award

5:1 – Silver Award

7:1 – Silver Award

10:1 – Gold Award.

Applies to IGFA line class 1kg ,2kg,4kg, 6kg,10kg,15kg,24kg,37kg and 60kg.


Barracuda 15kg

Dorado 12kg

Kingfish (Ignobilis) 20kg

Garrick (Leervis) 12kg

King Mackerel (’Cuda) 15kg

Black Marlin 100kg

Blue Marlin 100kg

Striped Marlin 60kg

Prodigal Son 15kg

Sailfish (Pacific) 25kg

Spearfish (Longbill) 20kg

Spearfish (Shortbill) 20kg

Tarpon 45kg

Tuna (Big Eye) 50kg

Tuna (Longfin) 25kg

Tuna (Yellowfin) 50kg Wahoo 15kg Yellowtail 15kg


With the strong trend towards releasing these and other fish, we have decided to amend the Kingfisher Award rules to provide for acknowledgement of all released fish. All we need is a photo of the fish being released or prior to release (e.g. GT held next to the boat) and the approximate weight of the fish which should fall in line with the stipulated weights set out above.

In line with this trend we will not be carrying photographs on the Kingfisher Awards page of any billfish or GTs aside from those that are released.

Digital emailed photographs should be high-resolution. Meritorious Fish Outstanding Catch Outstanding catch Category applied for (tick appropriate box): Species: ................................................ Weight: .................................................. Line class: ............................................. Date of Capture: .................................... Where Caught: ...................................... Skipper’s Name: .................................... Meritorious Fish Species: ................................................ Weight: .................................................. Date of Capture: .................................... Where Caught: ...................................... Skipper's Name: .................................... Tick the appropriate box and supply us with the following information. Please remember to print clearly. 3:15:1 7:1 10:1 Applicant’s Details: Name: ................................................... Address: ............................................... Code: .................................................... Tel No: ................................................... E-mail: Club (if member): .................................. I, the undersigned, agree to abide by the rules of this award.
.............................................. Email applications to:
1) 2) 3) 4) 5) 6) 7) 8) 9)
52 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023


IRECENTLY had the opportunity to participate in the Queens of the Ocean ladies-only fishing competition hosted by St Lucia Ski-Boat Club in St Lucia.I fished on the boat Tella III skippered by its owner,my uncle,Fanie Leibrandt.

On the first day of the competition the weather was relatively unpleasant.The surf was not too big,but with a big sandbank behind the channel it was challenging.The weather committee gave the go ahead and we went.Unfortunately our boat’s windshield shattered during the launch.

We fished at different depths,but had no successful strikes.When the wind picked up we went back to shore and so did the other boats.

The next day the launch proceeded with much more ease,and we started fishing with newfound energy and eagerness.

We went out to the ledge,48m depth,and drifted our bait.We got a strike and brought out a skipjack tuna.It was too small to count for the competition and we decided to fish deeper.

The deeper we went,the bigger the swells got.It was becoming tough to fish in these conditions but then suddenly I was on with a dorado.I landed the dorado which weighed 8.3kg.

There out in the depths it started to rain,and the downpour was so powerful that my uncle had to anchor me to the boat while I was bringing in the fish.

In a short time,I caught another two skipjacks that weighed for the competition.

My excitement was cut short,though.The weather became bad with lightning near the coastline.The weather committee called lines up and we all had to get back to the shore.Our boat was the last to beach after a long and difficult trip from the deep.

At the prizegiving I was awarded the prize for Top Junior Angler.I am extremely proud and grateful to my fellow crew members and skipper for all the hard work and determination that was shown throughout this amazing journey.

I hope to fish in this competition again in the future.

SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 55


56 • SKI-BOAT January/February
Andre van Vuuren and his 8kg tigerfish caught right here in front of the lodge.

THE longest east-flowing river in Africa,the Zambezi has been renowned internationally for its power ever since 1855 when David Livingstone first laid eyes on Victoria Falls.However,it’s only really in the last half century that the interconnected river systems of this area have been fully appreciated as an amazing destination to visit and absorb the wonders of the greater Zambezi River system,the game on its banks and the fish that inhabit the region’s waters.

In the northernmost parts of Namibia,where that country adjoins Angola,Zambia and Botswana,an arterial network of river systems feed into the otherwise dry district and the pan ecosystem,creating an immense area that boasts fertile floodplains which are covered in millions of litres of water each year during the annual floods.

Dick Pratt and Erwin Bursik sporting some great catches from the Zambezi River.

The Kavango,Kwando,Zambezi and Chobe rivers offer up stunning vistas for tourists to drink in,and arguably the most picturesque sunsets Africa has to offer.But that’s not the only reason to go out of your way to visit this part of the continent.The tigerfishing in these mighty rivers is some of the best in Africa,and as a result,a number of top class lodges have been developed to cater for the tourists who want to try their hand at catching these fierce fish while taking in the spectacular wildlife viewing the area is renowned for.

Gondwana Collection,Namibia’s premier tourist accommodation provider, boasts five lodges in this region,some with adjoining camping facilities. Hukasembe River Lodge in the west sits on the banks of the Kavango River, Namushasha River Lodge is situated on the Kwando River as it enters the Okavango Delta,Mubala Camp is found just east of Katima Mulilo on the mighty Zambezi,Mubala Lodge is a luxury establishment a 20-minute boat ride downriver of Mubala Camp,and the Chobe River Camp is on the border between Namibia and Botswana overlooking the river and the abundance of wild animals that visit this world-renowned watering area of the Chobe National Park.

On the edges of these magnificent river systems,millions upon millions of fish fry hatch on the floodplains during the annual high water season.As the water recedes they enter the rivers and provide food for the predatory gamefish such as tigerfish and nembwe.These in turn attract sport anglers from all over the world who are eager to experience the excitement of catching the feisty species resident in these wild river systems.

Boating,fishing and bird watching — and in some areas gameviewing — throughout the region demand the availability of river craft suitable for these pursuits.It also requires skippers trained to make the most of the scenic wonders of such a big river system,and who are able to get visitors safely within reach of the creatures that live there.

Over the past six years,Dick Pratt and I have undertaken advanced boat skippers’training courses for Gondwana’s skippers,incorporating not only a large theoretical component,but also intense on-water individual practical boat handling and safety training.We have both noted a vastly improved degree of boat handing and safety experience among the skippers and also a tremendously increased level of client interaction, which bodes well for visitors to these camps.

When you know you’re in safe hands on the river you’re free to relax and focus on spotting the resident wildlife or on getting one of the toothy critters below the waterline to take your bait,and there’s surely no more beautiful place in Africa to do it than Namibia!

58 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023
Dick Pratt congratulates the Hukasembe River Lodge skippers on passing the skippers training course. Namushasha River Lodge skippers proud to have passed. Chobe River Camp skippers show off their certificates. Mubala Camp and Lodge skippers who completed the course.
SKI-BOAT January/February 2023 • 59


MERCURY Marine recently introduced the industry’s first V10 outboard with the official launch of its all-new 5.7L 350hp and 400hp Verado® outboard engines.

Consistent with the award-winning Verado brand,the new V10 engines are the quietest and smoothest in their class running 45% quieter than a leading competitor at cruise.The new Verado motors are not only compatible with the latest Mercury SmartCraft® technologies,but will also be offered with an optional dual-mode 48V/12V alternator to seamlessly pair with Navico Group’s Fathom® ePower System.This integrated lithium-ion auxiliary power management system gives boaters the opportunity to eliminate an onboard generator system.

“The all-new Mercury V10 Verado outboards are exactly what boaters have been asking for in a 350 and 400hp platform,”said Chris Drees,Mercury Marine president.“They are powerful, smooth and quiet.They have many of the same fuel efficiency-enhancing features that are synonymous with our high-horsepower lineup. They also deliver the same kind of premium boating experience that has made Verado outboards legendary. The V10 Verado outboards solidify Mercury’s leadership position in the high-horsepower outboard market.”

The V10 Verado outboards leverage many of the same market-leading features and technologies boaters love about the company’s popular V12,V8 and V6 platforms.The new V10 includes premium refinements and versatility for a wide range of applications.

Weighing only 316kg and with the same industry-leading 26-inch mount spacing as the V8 outboards,the V10 engines maximise compatibility with current boat designs.This lightweight, compact design provides the performance boaters are looking for and makes them perfect for multi-engine applications or repowering vessels.

The new platform features the outboard industry’s first V10 naturally aspirated powerhead.It leverages class-lead-

ing 5.7L displacement and a performance-inspired quad-cam design to propel boats with exceptional speed and acceleration.A class-leading 150-amp alternator swiftly charges onboard batteries and intelligently supports the boat’s electrical system.

The platform’s all-new hydrodynamic gearcase is engineered to improve performance and durability across multiple applications while also maximising fuel efficiency.Mercury engineers went back to first principles engineering and designed the all-new Revolution X propeller to perfectly match the V10 Verado in every way.A larger diameter and wider blades combined with the deep ratio of the new gearcase provide excellent handling,thrilling acceleration and high efficiency from low speed all the way to wideopen throttle.

Calibrated to deliver full performance on standard (95 RON) fuel,these outboards also feature efficiency-enhancing technologies,a closed-loop lean burn fuel system and Advanced Range Optimization.Adaptive Speed Control maintains engine rpm despite changes in load or conditions,making climbing large swells easier and cruising at low speeds smoother.Transient Spark Technology electronically adjusts spark timing to optimise

The V10 Verado engines will also be compatible with a new Mercury electric steering system for multi-outboard vessels slated to start shipping in February 2023.The new system will offer enhanced steering responsiveness, dramatically simplified rigging and a more than 50% reduction in energy consumption.

“We challenged our engineers to improve acceleration and overall performance with the new V10 Verado outboards,while also making them quieter and lighter than competitors’outboards in this horsepower range,”said Tim Reid,Mercury Marine vice president of product development and engineering. “Once again they exceeded expectations while also incorporating technologies that make boat operation and maintenance intuitively simple.”

Advanced Skippers Training . . . . . . .55

Adventure Tropicale . . . . . . . . . . . . .13

Ballistic Sunglasses . . . . . . . . . . . . . .48

Bazaruto Encounters . . . . . . . . . . . . .30

Bazaruto Encounters . . . . . . . . . . . . .44

Boat and vehicle for sale . . . . . . . . . .44

Boats for sale . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .39

Club Marine Insurance . . . . . . . . . . . .2

Dassen Island Charters . . . . . . . . . . .18

Durban Marine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14

Durban SB Club Festival . . . . . . . . . .36

Garmin . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .35

Gondwana Collection . . . . . . . . . . . .59

Jacita Tackle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .23

Lowrance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1

Lowrance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10

MDM Services — Raymarine . . . . . . . .4

Mercury — Rutherford Marine . . . . .26

Mercury — Rutherford Marine . . . . .30

Mr Winch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .48

Natal Caravans & Marine . . . . . . . . .IBC

Natal Caravans & Marine . . . . . . . . .IFC

OET Sponsors Thanks . . . . . . . . . . . .29

Pelagic Gear — Formalito . . . . . . . . .32

Queens of the Ocean Thank You . . .51

Ratel fishing clothing . . . . . . . . . . . .51

Riverside Cottages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .59

Safari Outdoor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .43

Seaport Supply . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3

Solly’s Angler’s Corner . . . . . . . . . . .10

Stubb’sea Charters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .44

Supercat . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .34

The Kingfisher . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8

Turtle Bay Lodge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .48

Two Oceans Marlin Tournament . . .16

Vanguard Insurance . . . . . . . . . . . .OBC

Yamaha . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18

Yzerfontein Accommodation . . . . . .23

62 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023

Last word from the ladies!


AFEW friends and Ihad signed up for a girls-only fishing comp in St Lucia,KwaZulu-Natal,and we were all ready and excited to win.Even waking up at 3.30am to pack the boat lunches for our deep sea fishing trip did not produce any Ralapa Lips.Fun,fishing and laughter were just some of the ingredients on our menu for the day.

Day one was interesting ...

We had a good morning landing a couple of good fish between those that were dropped,and when the first call up for the day was made we heard about the fish that had been caught on the other boats.We’d done better than most of the teams and knew we had a good chance of being the top boat of the day — all we needed was one more species.

We were having a jol and listing to good music — just then A Beautiful Noise by Neil Diamond was playing. The next moment we heard another beautiful noise — the sound of a screaming reel.It was game on with a double hook-up!

Dorados were jumping behind the boat,and as it was my turn on the rod, I jumped at the opportunity to land us the winning fish.I concentrated all my effort and a few minutes later the green

and gold beauty was gaffed,on the boat,and dispatched into the hatch.Yes!

We had a quick high five,but two of the girls were still busy fighting dorries. Keeping the male in the water and not landing it,gave us a chance to pitch some livebait to the other fish in the school that were circling in the water.

In all the chaos,the hatch had been left open so that it was ready to receive the other dorados,but my dorado was not giving up on life.It thrashed around and decided to jump out of the open hatch and onto the deck.

Us girls were doing our best to catch more of the remaining dorados, and Walter was already moving to the hatch,so all was good.

Ihad been focusing on my friend Bianca,encouraging her in her fight with the dorado on her line,and felt her disappointment when she lost it. However,I was surprised at what seemed like a complete overreaction from our skipper,Walter,who was suddenly very upset because of the lost fish.

With much pride,trying to play down the loss and lift his spirits,I said, “Well,we still have my one.”

Silence and big eyes was all the reply I got.

Eventually Bianca broke the awkward silence:“Walter dropped it.”


Apparently,while we were trying to catch more dorado,Walter tried putting the escapee back in the hatch.The fish was still so green that it jumped right out of his hands back into the sea to swim for another day!

What a disappointment when you realise the fish you landed and saw going into the hatch is no longer on the boat! There were Rapala Lips all round, but those wouldn’t win anything.We knew that we had to carry on fishing to make up those points that were lost.

Try as we might,we were not able to get any more fish IDB before linesup.That dropped fish would have put us in the leading position for day one, but shooting deathly looks at Walter wouldn’t change anything.

When we got to weigh in we were sure we would be in second place for the day,but the boat that should have been in first place was two minutes late for weigh-in and was disqualified.We were top of the leaderboard and our Rapala Lips started to disappear!

On day two our luck turned properly,with me landing a billfish and all of us bagging some nice samples of other species.In the end we won the competition,but knew that we would probably have been second if the other boat was on time for weigh in.

All is fair in love and fishing long as no one drops the fish!


LADIES — are you an angling widow? Are you a frustrated crew member? Do you outfish the men on the boat and have to deal with their Rapala Lips? Do you bite your lip at the comments coming from chauvinistic male anglers? Or has that all really changed?

64 • SKI-BOAT January/February 2023
We’re looking for new writers for our Rapala Lip column. All contributions are gladly accepted and they will appear anonymously to protect the writers from divorce suits, cold shoulders, banishments, cut up credit cards etc. Come on ladies, share your stories (about 900 words) with us — you know you want to. Email them to <>. RAPALALIP
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