This heat saw the return of Olav Bjortomt. Olav has a huge list of quiz credentials. Suffice it to say that he was the inaugural world quizzing champion. Dermot rather mischievously reminded Olav how he was beaten in the second round last year by eventual finalist Shaun Wallace, now of ITV’s The Chase.
I was delighted to see that Olav’s opponent was none other than Gill Woon. As Gill Doubleday, her maiden name, she reached the final of the 1989 series of Mastermind, where she was runner up to vet Mary –Elizabeth Raw.
Olav won the first three categories, which came as no surprise to anyone who watched last year’s series, I’m sure. This enabled him to add Kevin, Daphne and Chris to his team. Gill staged a fight back, and picked Judith, leaving Olav to secure CJ for himself by winning the last round.
In the final Gill was rather undergunned, and fell to the might of Olav and his almost full hand of Eggheads. I think she would probably have to concede that the writing had been on the wall from early on in the show. She put up a good performance though, and has nothing to be ashamed of. Olav won comfortably by 4 points to 2.
A rarity, this one. Jan Crompton, who reached the second round last year when she lost to Pat Gibson returned this year to take on none other than her own brother Alan Crompton. Jan is a researcher and question setter, while Alan has a certain amount of experience on TV before, having played in WWTBAM. He was a little coy about this, and didn’t mention how much he has won.
Before the start of the first round you might well have been forgiven for expecting Jan to do well, since she pushed Pat all the way last year. She only lost 6 – 5 in the final round. Mind you, having said that Pat did win all five Eggheads that day. Brother Alan took first blood, and had snaffled up both Kevin and Daphne before Jan made a real mark on the game. She bagged both Chris and Barry, leaving Alan to win CJ on the last round.
Jan earned a huge round of applause from the Clark sofa for having a go at Dermot for saying “Don’t put all your Eggheads in one basket “ yet again. Dermot, though, took it in good spirit. He comes across as such a nice guy when you meet him, and I kind of think that he’s exactly the same kind of nice guy off screen that he is on screen.
Neither sibling really showed themselves to be among the top performers in the first round up to the final, but then both siblings played this last round superbly, not using Eggheads where they didn’t have to. In the end, it came down to the last pair of questions. Alan didn’t trust Kevin – he should have. Jan did trust Chris, and was rewarded with a 5 – 4 win. Good show.
The 14th heat saw the return of the People’s Choice, David Rainford, who reached the semi finals of last year’s AYAE competition. His opposition was Isabel Morgan, who won a quarter of a million pounds on Millionaire. Interestingly she said that she and her son had used up all their lifelines by £2000 , so her success was all the more remarkable.
I can always listen to David Rainford, he’s a witty and amusing guy. He’s also a very clever one, and had a full set of all five Eggheads – Daphne, Chris, Barry, CJ and Judith by the time the final round started. That’s when the fireworks started. Isabel may have had no Egghead to help her out, but she matched David question for question. At 4 – all we went into sudden death. David correctly named the co founder of Google, while Isabel fell to a rather innocuous question – In which British city is the Soane Museum. No excuse really for a Londoner not to get it, and that’s the sort of mistake which can always cost you the game. Hard lines, but the people’s choice marches on into round two.
This week’s last heat , and the penultimate heat of the first round, matched two quizzers I’m afraid that I didn’t know. Not that this is any reflection on them.Amy Godell has done in her own words one or two TV quizzes. Says she knows a little about a lot. Rupy - and I’m really sorry , sir, but I didn’t catch your last name, has appeared on Eggheads. His team lost, but he beat Daphne on a head to head. He’s a quiz league player as well.
These were quite a well matched pair. Rupy had the better of the first five rounds, winning 3 to Amy’s 2. I was interested in his tactics of choosing Judith before Chris. No disrespect to Judith is intended, but I think that this is the first time that this has happened.
Rupy didn’t manage to use his Egghead advantage to best effect. He guessed one wrongly himself, and then had to use both Judith and Kevin to answer what rank Prince Harry was commissioned at in the Household Cavalry. Judith was right, Kevin was wrong, and poor Rupy zigged with Kevin when he should have zagged with Judith. In the end, Amy won by 4 points to 1.
Week Three Summary
Once again a good week for the recidivists. Olav, Jan and David R. from last year all won their heats to progress to the next round. I make no comment about my own match, but I really enjoyed David’s and Jan’s matches. One more first round match to go, and then we’ll be onto the second round.