Shakespeare MTI Bass Rod

Another top of the range rod from Mike Thrussell. Lovely to hold and cast, great bite indication, soft tip for casting soft baits but loads of power when needed, that just about sums this rod up, do I need to say any more about it?

OK, I suppose you want to know a bit about the technical side. The rod is 11ft 9ins (3.58m) long in 2 equal lengths, it has 11 quality Fuji gunmetal rings and a shrink tube grip and comes in a smart black velvet bag. It’s designed to cast 3 to 4 oz but I did cast a 5oz Breakaway when the tide started running and it wasn’t a problem. I didn’t like the plastic coasters supplied. They worked fine and blended well with the rest of the rod but it was like buying a Ferrari and finding it had steel wheels with silver plastic wheel trims, not quite what you’d expect for a rod of this pedigree or price. RRP £150.

I’ve had this rod for ages but just haven’t had the conditions or fish to try it out. My chance came with the arrival of the bream and hounds at Pagham. I managed to get out on a calm, warm night with some top peelers from Allan’s Marine.

mti_bass_rod_164384270.jpgIt was all coming together, just the tide was later than I’d like so it meant a very late night. I arrived at about 2130, expecting to fight my way onto the beach but was surprised to find somewhere to park and then the beach was nearly empty. Had I blown it? Was my information duff? I set up away from the group of anglers in front of the sailing club as I thought they might be fishing a match.

I cast out two small peelers on a 4/0 Sakuma Manta hook and watched the bream rattles on my Daiwa AWB 126 tip. No smoothhound bites so I wound in to find a bare hook, just the elastic remained.

I rigged up the MTI Bass rod with a 2 hook rig comprising of 2 x size 2 Sakuma Stingers baited with ragworm and squid and cast it about 80 yards. I’d just put the rod in the rest when it pulled right down and stayed down. I picked it up to find line running off the Daiwa 7 HT Turbo reel at a great rate of knots against the drag. "Oh no!" I thought, 12lb line to size 2 hooks on 12lb snoods and I hook a big smut, this will be interesting.  I had great fun playing the fish, which I landed after about 5-10 minutes. It was an 11lb hound, hooked in the top lip. The rod handled it perfectly, from the bite to beaching. Any rod that can handle an 11lb smut will handle any bass you are likely to hook.

I carried on fishing with the rod and caught some bream and big pout. All the bites were positive on the rod tip, although they didn’t fight quite as well as the smoothhound. I also had 5 hounds between 5lb and 8lb on my other rod, so all in all a successful night.

Norman Berry, Editor, Sea Angling News

The MTI Bass rod is available direct from Mike Thrussell's World Sea Fishing Website. Click here for details.