Fishermen land monster yellow fin tunas in competition

Tuesday 23 February 2021 | Written by CI News Staff | Published in Local, National

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Fishermen land monster yellow fin tunas in competition
Peia Patai winner of the 2021 Gordon Murray memorial fishing tournament with his son and the 64.9kg yellowfin tuna. 21022213.

Peia Patai won the 2021 Gordon Murray Memorial Fishing Tournament with a 64.9 kilogram yellowfin tuna, taking home $1000 cash and a trophy sponsored by the Murray family, on Saturday night.

A seasoned fisherman and captain of the country’s vaka, Marumaru Atua, Patai hooked the tuna using an island lure out from Ngatangiia. It took him 20 minutes to reel in the impressive fish.

“I lost three and landed one, so it wasn’t a good day,” he said that afternoon, hoping his fish will stay in the lead - which it did.

It was well worth the wait for Jason Tuara and Joachim Tau who were the last to weigh-in before 6pm.

Tuara collected the heaviest aggregate prize with three large tuna, 13 mahimahi weighing an average of 14kg each and a wahoo.

The fishermen who weighed in revealed that the big sized yellowfin tunas were out in the Ngatangiia and Tikioki area. Those who ventured to the western side of the island were lucky to return with a fish, many returned to shore with “poro” – zero fish.


Joachim Tau (left) and Jason Tuara, winners of the heaviest aggregate - 346.2kg – in the 2021 Gordon Murray memorial fishing tournament. 21022216.

Twenty eight boats registered for the event, 40 fish were weighed, amassing 898.2kg.

The fish species weighed in on the day were: mahimahi - 18, yellowfin tuna - 15, skipjack –five and wahoo – two.

The annual fishing event was sponsored by the late Gordon Murray’s family and Vonnia’s in association with the Cook Islands Game Fishing Club. It was the first event for the year.


Gordon and Jennifer Murray’s children Tim Murray, Peia Patai (2021 winner), Yvonne Heather and Jane Wichman at the prize giving event held on Saturday. 21022217.

Gordon and Jennifer Murray’s children Yvonne, Jane and Tim were present to give out the prizes; two grandsons Kerry Murray and Gordon Heather also participated in the fishing contest.

The results are as follows: Heaviest fish Peia Patai - yellowfin tuna 64.9kg, 2nd Mara Tairi - yellowfin tuna 61.6kg, 3rd Paku Poila - yellowfin tuna 57.7kg.

Heaviest aggregate: Jason Tuara - 346.2kg, 2nd Gordon Heather - 136.2kg, 3rd Iro Maroroa - 53.3kg.


Eugene Kaina (left) and Paku Poila with their 57.7kg yellowfin tuna that placed third in the heaviest fish category. 21022215.

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