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Big bass caught in Japan could tie 77-year-old world record

September 16, 2009 |  9:44 am


It's amazing that for 77 years bass anglers have been trying to beat the catch of a 22-pound, 4-ounce bass made by George Perry on June 2, 1932, in Georgia's Montgomery Lake--and then somebody comes along and ties the record.

Japan's Manabu Kurita is that angler. He made his catch on July 2 at ancient Lake Biwa northeast of Kyoto, and it has generated quite a buzz among the passionate bass-fishing community.

But Kurita waited until this week to submit documentation for the catch to the Florida-based International Game Fish Assn. The IGFA issued a press release Tuesday afternoon stating it had received documentation via the Japan Game Fish Assn., and that it is under review. A decision regarding the submission is due within a month.

Kurita's bass measured 27.20 inches in length and an almost equal 26.77 inches in girth. It was caught on a live bluegill as the angler was trolling through a canal. The IGFA will try to verify  whether all regulations were adhered to.

Beating Perry has and remains the premier aspiration among serious bass fishermen. Few thought a Japanese reservoir could produce so large a bass. Many believed and still believe the new record fish will come from a Southern California reservoir, such as Lake Dixon in Escondido or Lake Casitas near Ventura, to name just two.

For now, however, anglers will wait to see what the IGFA says about Kurita's impressive catch.

-- Pete Thomas

Photo: Manabu Kurita poses with 22-pound, 4-ounce largemouth bass he caught in July in Japan. That ties the all-tackle world record, set 77 years ago in Georgia, but the world record submission must be approved by the International Game Fish Assn.