Words Liam Berghan
What a turnout! The first ever Fiji Spearfishing Competition was hosted in the Yasawa Islands at Mantaray Island Resort in Fiji. Competitors were so eager to take advantage of the unique opportunity to spear in Fiji that they arrived more than a full week ahead of schedule. And who can blame them with the chance to explore this stunning tropical paradise?
Mantaray Island Resort
The competition spanned over three days and maps were handed out to competitors with 4 zones marked out. A list of permitted and not permitted fish were issued with different points per kg depending on the difficulty of the fish. Each competitor would only collect points on their heaviest fish of each species.
Joe Donne Spearing at Viwa
With the rules laid down they were off! Conditions for the competition were incredible. Visibility was at over 50m, and was swarming with Blue Fin Travelli, Giant Travelli, Spanish Mackerel, Coral Trout, Barracuda, Dogtooth Tuna and many more. Competitors strove to land the biggest fish all while being surrounded by pristine coral reefs and the shimmering colours of the tropical marine life.
Photo of Joe Donne Spearing at Viwa
The competition was fierce and the bar was set high from day one. Ben, a legendary local spearo, landed the biggest catch of the day with a 32kg Spanish mackerel.
Photo of Ben and his 32kg Spanish Mackerel
Some competitors focused on landing the biggest fish while others focussed on getting the most species. Both were viable tactics and it was an incredibly close race.
Photo of Jamie Wilson and his catch
All competitors had their own tactics and many managed to show off their incredible spearing skills, but two spearos clearly outshone everyone else. Jamie Wilson, a spearo from New Zealand and Ben, the local Fiji legend. They went toe to toe battling for the title. But in the end there could only be one winner and Ben proved that he was the king of Fiji waters taking out the award for 1st place and heaviest fish, walking away with $2000.00.
Ben and his prize
Jamie Wilson who placed second won himself a three day escape for two at Mantaray Island Resort in Fiji.
All in all it was an incredible success and everyone is looking forward to competing again next year!
Bring on Fiji Spearfishing 2018!
To check out Mantaray Island Resort go to – www.mantarayisland.com