"A BLOODY monster" is how former cattle farmer and campdrafter Kim Saddlier described the 270kg blue marlin she reeled in near Rooney's Point.
With her heart pounding and arms straining, the Hervey Bay angler spent a whopping two-and-a-half hours fighting the fish before finally the massive creature relinquished and came to the top.
"Little did I know at the time that the rod and tackle really weren't up to the task and nobody was expecting this to end well," Saddlier said.
"But I am a Taurus and a female, which makes me very stubborn and I wanted to see my fish."
The Hervey Bay Game Fishing Club member was competing in her club's annual Game Fishing Classic when the 46-year-old hauled in her first blue marlin since taking up the sport 12 months ago.
And while the blue marlin is undoubtedly her biggest catch, the fish was quickly tagged, photographed and released, but not before Saddlier gave it a pat and thanked it for a great fight.
"I knew it was big, but not that big," she said.
"When I hooked up I thought 'no way I could pull this in', but it's the challenge of getting this huge fish that doesn't want to come out of the water that makes you keep thinking 'don't let go'.
"Usually you get a few hits and you get excited but they fall off, so patience is a virtue."
After a lifetime of droughts, dust, cattle and horses living on cattle properties, Saddlier moved from Woodford to Hervey Bay in April 2013 for a seachange and a fresh start.
Saddlier said the lure of game fishing was too hard to resist, meeting Brad Green and his boat Pickle 1, a 36-foot Blackwatch that catches your eye and stacks of fish.
It was the second time Saddlier had contested the Game Fishing Classic, reeling in two 20kg black marlins, a cobia and dolphin fish in her tournament debut to be crowned champion female angler last year.
Having swapped her bridle and spurs for rods and lures, Saddlier said she hoped to see more people fishing competitively, especially more females.
"It's an awesome sport and so much fun," she said.
"The Hervey Bay Game Fishing Club is a great group of people and a great club."
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