Matt Watson
The Hutchwilco New Zealand Boat Show 2024
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Matt Watson is a household name in New Zealand and a true Kiwi icon. He started fishing as most of us do with his father and grandfather as a three-year-old. The Manukau Harbour was Matt's first stomping ground where at just seven years old he became the skipper of his own dinghy and started to terrorise the local snapper, flounder, and mullet on the muddy flats around his hometown of Weymouth. As soon as he was old enough (or rather able to haul nets and gut fish) he began to work weekends and school holidays for his uncle as a commercial fisherman.
Being self-employed afforded Matt the ability to work hard and then get away when the fishing was good. Matt and his red Stabicraft, Stingray II, could be seen chasing tuna one weekend at Whakatane and chasing marlin at North Cape the next.Aged 25, Matt decided to have a go at making a career out of fishing. Having completed enough commercial sea hours, Matt sat his skipper’s exams and began seeking out a crewing job on a game fishing boat in the Bay of Islands and landed a job on Primetime, which had just been built by John Gregory.The Primetime operation made it to top gamefish boat in its first season.In the following years, Matt did two more seasons on Primetime and started crewing on the Ultimate Lady, where they pioneered sportfishing at the Wanganella banks.
In 2003 while Matt was still a crewman, The Fishing Show aired on TV with no naming rights sponsor, and season two screened in 2004 which was also the start of a 20-year relationship with ITM, and thus The ITM Fishing Show was born.
Matt will be on the Shimano Stand in the Shimano Fishing Pavilion for a majority of the show, and will be doing two Shimano Masterclass seminars each day. Matt will be covering off everything from strayling for Snapper with his trusty Baitrunners, live baiting and trolling for Marlin, as well as daytime sword fishing. You do not want to miss this!

See me at The Boat Show!

Snapper: Straylining / BTR

Calling all Snapper fanatics! Join Kiwi fishing legend Matt Watson for an unmissable Shimano Masterclass. Matt will share his decades of experience, unlock the secrets to Snapper success, with a special focus on his infamous straylining techniques using trusty Baitrunner reels. Unleash your inner Snapper slayer and learn Matt’s battle-tested straylining tactics for consistent Snapper catches, master the art of using Baitrunner reels to dominate the bite and uncover hidden tricks and finesse techniques to outsmart even the wiliest Snapper.

12:00 pm - 12:45 pm
Thu 16 May
1:45 pm - 2:30 pm
Fri 17 May
12:00 pm - 12:45 pm
Sat 18 May
11:30 am - 12:15 pm
Sun 19 May

Gamefishing: Trolling / Livebaiting / Swordfish

Join renowned angler Matt Watson for an exhilarating deep-dive into the world of gamefishing. In this exclusive seminar, Matt shares proven techniques for live baiting and trolling for Marlin, as well as daytime swordfishing. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a curious beginner, this seminar promises action-packed insights that will elevate your fishing game.

4:45 pm - 5:30 pm
Thu 16 May
5:45 pm - 6:30 pm
Fri 17 May
4:45 pm - 5:30 pm
Sat 18 May
3:00 pm - 3:45 pm
Sun 19 May
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