Fisherman reels in world record 9ft monster catfish after 43-minute struggle

A fisherman battled with a 'monster' catfish for almost an hour, and eventually reeled in the 9ft beast, longer than the world's tallest ever human.

The huge specimen was 9 foot 4 1/4 inches, or just over 2.8 metres long, while American man Robert Wadlow, the tallest human ever, stood at 8 ft 11.1 in (2.72 m).

Italian angler Alessandro Biancardi caught the mega fish in the River Po in northern Italy, saying that he had 'hooked a monster'.

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"When it surfaced for the first time, I really realised that I had hooked a monster, adrenaline started pumping hard and the fear of losing it almost sent me into a panic," the Daily Mail reports.

"I was alone facing the biggest catfish I had ever seen in 23 years."

He described the catch as a 'complicated fight'.

"The fish stood still some seconds before starting a very complicated fight," Biancardi said.

"I tried gloving its mouth two-three times, but it was still too strong. [So] I decided to go in shallow water trying to land it from shore.

"After a few tries, I managed to land it," he said.

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The pro fisher said he didn't weigh the beast and let it go to give another angler 'the smae joy' he got.

"I was very curious about the weight but I feared [it would] stress the rare specimen too much, so I decided to safely release it," he said.

"[I was] hoping it could give another angler the same joy he gave to me."

Alessandro's fishing colleagues said his catch would break the International Game Fish Association all-tackle world record for length.

It beats the previous holder, also caught in the Po, by 40 centimetres but won't count because the angler released the fish.

However, it does qualify for the International Game Fish Association's catch-and-release length record, beating the previous record-holder by four centimetres. That fish was also caught in the Po.

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