A Tauranga teen angler has blown the local competition out of the water with a pending world record catch.
The shortbilled spearfish, which clocked in at a hefty 34.5kg and is almost longer than the angler himself, was reeled in by 13-year-old Ezra Keenan in late March at the Tauranga Sport Fishing Club.
The keen young angler is hoping to take out a world record with his catch and has already sent off the paperwork, signed by a Justice of the Peace, for inspection.
The catch was up for the world record in two categories - the junior all tackle and the men's 24kg line weight.
Ezra has been fishing since he was three or four and the year 9 student at Otumoetai College remembers starting off by pitching a line off a wharf.
He began game fishing when he was 10 and hauled in his first marlin soon after.
He modestly said making the catch was "pretty cool" and he was surprised to catch the spearfish as it was unusual for this time of the year.
The fish wasn't just a pretty face either - it was later smoked and served up for dinner.
Ezra's uncle Zac Holmberg was on board when the mighty catch was reeled in.
The day had been underwhelming before the catch: they were about 40 nautical miles offshore, the conditions were rough and they had missed snagging a blue marlin.
But at around 3pm, Ezra's line got a bite and it was all on.
Ezra was "stoked" with the catch and it was the biggest catch of the day at the club, Holmberg said.
It was chucked in the chiller overnight and it was weighed up the next morning.
"The weighmaster said it was the biggest [spearfish] he'd ever seen," Holmberg said.
Tauranga Sport Fishing Club manager Roly Bagshaw said it was great for the club to see a young person coming up through the ranks.
"It's an amazing fish to catch for such a young angler."