The Browning Youth team recently became the first youth squad to compete in the National Commercial Fishery Championships, and despite being up against some of the strongest anglers in commercial fishing, came away with a brilliant result!

Team Manager, Paul Etherington, gives us an insight into how the match unfolded.


We entered this event as the first ever Youth only team to compete at this level, no other youth or junior squad has ever attempted this event. We wanted as a team to compete at the highest level and against the best anglers in the UK as a team. 

Our team has a mixture of experience, youth, and determination to succeed. The other differing factor with our team compared to others is that we are split across the North and South of the UK. So, unlike other teams, who have more time to practice, we are more limited by school, college and for a few now, work getting in the way.

The draw was made live on the Angling Trust competitions page the day before the event. A random draw for the teams, and then a second draw for our peg set, which is a defined set of pegs across all lakes being used. 

We were handed peg set 8. Fortunately, our manager Carl Shepherdson knows the venue, and we also have two Lindholme regulars within the main Browning UK Team in Jim Hall and Rich Kerridge so they both gave us valuable information on how to approach each lake. 

We had a chat amongst our group and we all agreed mid-table would be a fantastic achievement and a good target to aim for, especially knowing the calibre and company we were in.

As it usually does, the weather wasn’t too kind to us with a hard frost overnight. It looked to change the mood slightly among many when turning up in the morning, but we didn’t let that bother us as we were focussed on getting the job done for each other. 

In our peg set we didn’t have any pegs that were deemed to be ‘run as fast as you can’, like-wise, none that wanted to send you ‘wheel spinning out of the car park home’, it was a good steady set of pegs. 

The plan was to just fish a steady match and keep the bites coming from whatever species was happy to feed at that point – it’s valuable to think of the team points rather than individual glory in events like this.

Come 4 o’clock the nerves started to increase as we all started to message each other to try and work out how we had done. Both our managers Carl and Paul Etherington were keeping up-to-date and posting via the Angling Trusts scoring website live online. 

The first lot of results to come through left several of the team towards the top half of their sections, which was good and the team were placed 7th. We then started to think it wasn’t going to be, as a couple of lads had a really hard day. What we thought were bad results turned out to be, over a couple of sections, decent results, it’s just unfortunate only your 11 or 12 peg section counted for points.

Ninety minutes after the all-out the weigh-in was complete. As with all National events the top three in each section and top 10 overall are not announced to allow the staff to check and ensure any points and monies to be paid out are correct. 

We had Matt Mollart, Will Marchant, Charlie Sibley and Tommy Clark each in the top three of their sections, and we knew by this point that 7th was the lowest we could come, but had to wait nervously to find out the final result.

Come 6.30pm and the final results were in. We had done it, coming 7th overall as a team out of 23 on our first attempt against some of the best teams in commercial match fishing. We were only one point away from 6th, something we felt we could have achieved, a couple of lads ruing some lost fish, but every team could say the same. 

We couldn’t believe that we had made the top 10 in the Commercial National, and not only that had Matt, Charlie and Tommy finishing 3rd in their sections and Will coming 2nd in his. Overall, from 230 anglers, Matt Mollart who had only turned 16 a few days prior to the event came 20th, Charlie Sibley 24th and Will Marchant 40th. One of our other team anglers Josh Derry fished for his adult team on the day and also came 2nd in his section and 25th overall. We couldn’t believe we had beaten our main Browning UK Team as well, who had one of the strongest line-ups in the field, so we feel privileged.

Each of us played a huge part and for our first event as a Browning backed team, we hope this is the start of many more to come. 

We would like to thank Simon Henton for giving us this opportunity, George Kenrick for the product support we have received, Jim Hall and Rich Kerridge for the info to help us to this result and each other for coming together and ensuring we work as a team.

The Browning Youth Commercial National Team are:

Ethan Etherington

Josh Paling

Charlie Sibley

Matt Mollart

Adam Tollitt

Owen Newman

Tommy Clark

Will Marchant

Tyler Bird

Joe Peake


Team Managers

Carl Shepherdson

Paul Etherington

"we hope this is the start of many more to come."