IN ERNEST Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea, a fisherman achieved the impossible catch by landing a monster marlin from a small skiff.

Channelling the classic story on the Coffs Coast, Tommie Strydom and his mate Paul Pallet landed a marlin from their kayaks after paddling out to sea from Diggers Beach on Friday afternoon.

"We went out yakking hoping to catch some mackerel or tuna," Tommie said.

"Using live bait I hooked onto a marlin."

Ask any game fisherman and they'll tell you the enormity of the task, given most people are strapped into a fishing chair and use a boat motor to help land marlin of that size.

Initially, Tommie said he thought he had hooked a shark as line spun furiously from the reel.

Then, after a concerted fight, the marlin in a spectacular leap breaches the surface and lets fly, as Tommie engages in the fishing fight of a lifetime.

Dragged for some distance, he finally wins against the fatigued monster.

"After approximately 90 minutes I landed the fish," Tommie said.

"With the help of my friend, Paul, we managed to revive it and released it.

"Correct me if I'm wrong but I do believe this is the first marlin caught from a kayak off the Coffs Coast."



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