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Last Updated: Friday, 22 August, 2003, 09:46 GMT 10:46 UK
Angler battles with shark at sea
Shark meat
Mr Bailey sold the shark to a fish merchant for 75p per pound.
An angler caught more than he bargained for when his boat was dragged more than two miles off the Dorset coast by a 240-pound shark.

David Bailey was out mackerel fishing with his father and brother, who were in a separate boat, when the giant fish took hold of his bait, almost snapping his fishing rod in half.

He then spent more than two hours using what he described as "Mickey Mouse" gear to reel in the 12-foot monster off the Bournemouth coast.

He described the thresher shark as being almost as big as his boat.

Even though I only had an 80lbs rod and Mickey Mouse gear there was no way I was going to let it go
David Bailey
The 34-year-old, from Poole, said: "We normally stay around Poole Harbour and catch cockles but decided to venture out a bit further to see if we could get something bigger.

"We hoped for a load of mackerel and were doing rather well when it happened.

"My reel made a clicking sound and my balloon float went under.

"The next thing I knew my rod was bent right over, so I knew I had something a bit bigger than a mackerel.

"After about ten seconds it jumped clean out of the water, it was obvious what it was and it was absolutely massive."

Divers injured

He added: "Even though I only had an 80-pound rod and Mickey Mouse gear there was no way I was going to let it go.

"We ended up being dragged for a mile or two by it."

After a hero's welcome back at shore, he said he sold the shark to a London fish merchant for 75p per pound.

Thresher sharks, which are normally found in warmer waters such as the Mediterranean, are not a danger to humans but divers have been known to get injured after getting in the way of their tail.



Minke whale 'facing death'
11 Aug 03  |  Wales
Man gutted over fishy tale
22 Jul 03  |  Hampshire/Dorset



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