Probably the luckiest grander in the whole Pacific to avoid capture happened off the Gold Coast. Captains Bobby "Jonesy" Jones and Ross McCubbin, both of Cairns fame, were out for a leisurely day of fishing, testing Jonesy's new 65-footer, Merlin. The vessel had never fished before, and outriggers, rod holders and a game chair had only just been fitted. All the other equipment — such as flying gaffs and tail ropes, required to secure a giant marlin — hadn't been transferred off the old boat.
The only items they had taken along were four 130-pound outfits and a bunch of their favorite lures. Jonesy's wife, Lorraine, was aboard and eager to test the new fighting chair with whatever they hooked. She has won the battle many times with big marlin, tagging scores of huge black marlin off Cairns, including two I photographed that were well over the grander mark.