Game-fishing competition in Misamis Oriental kicks off

SUGBONGCOGON, Misamis Oriental (MindaNews / 21 May) – Anglers from different parts of the country are now vying for the First Big Catch Game Fishing Tournament in this municipality.

Rodneil Simene, of Cagayan de Oro City, holds his 3.1-kilogram catch, a cutlassfish locally known as “diwit,” off Barangay Kiraging during the first day of the First Big Catch Game Fishing Tournament in the municipality of Sugbongcogon, Misamis Oriental Friday afternoon (21 May 2021). MindaNews photo by ROEL N. CATOTO

Jopep Ramientos, event director, told participants during the briefing session Thursday evening that despite the obstacles due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the event has pushed through.

The event started Friday morning (May 20) and will culminate the next day.

More than 50 participants are vying for the P30,000 top prize and other awards based on the weight of their catch. Second prize is P10,000 and the third, 5,000. There will also be prizes for the boatmen accompanying the anglers: P10,000 for the first, P4,000 and P2,000 for the second and third, respectively.

The tournament guidelines said participants can only use the “jigging” fishing method, with a rod, line and hook. They can fish anywhere they like, except in fish sanctuaries, as long as they can bring in their catch by 11 a.m. on Saturday at the latest.

Sugbongcogon Mayor Mildred Lagbas-Mondigo, the co-presenter of the event, said that they are grateful in hosting the anglers, most of whom coming from different parts of Mindanao.

Mondigo wishes this event will become an annual sports activity to boost the town’s tourism program.

Dr. Cynthia Corporal, municipal health officer, reminded participants to strictly follow health protocols to avoid getting infected with COVID-19.

Seasoned angler Clifford Gonzales, of Siargao Island, is gunning for his first come-back game-fishing tournament after the cancellation of various competitions around the country because of the pandemic.

Neophyte angler Rodneil Simene of Cagayan de Oro is excited: “I hope to catch bigger fish in this fish-rich place.” He and some friends come to this place often to fish.

He said he caught an 8.2-kilogram pomfret (locally known as “tabas”) here last week while a friend got an oilfish.

On the first day of the tournament, he caught a 3.1kg cutlassfish, locally known as “diwit.” (Roel N. Catoto / MindaNews)