If you hook a fish properly, and the line doesn't break, you should eventually catch it. Of course, the angler or crew can make a serious error that results in a lost fish, or the fish just may be too big for the tackle used and manage to break free. Most lost fish, however, take a bit of drag and then pull the hook. This leaves you wondering: Is there something that I, or the angler, could have done differently to keep that fish on? Hooking the fish, and keeping it hooked until it can be gaffed or tagged and released, is the most essential, and one of the most challenging, parts of fishing.
When targeting billfish using dead natural baits, there are several things that you need to do — and a few that you need to avoid — in order to be successful. First and foremost, giving a good drop-back with true free-spool, where the line falls off the rod tip, is an essential skill that must be learned by all anglers.