Wednesday, 2 December 2009

TV Watch - University Challenge

University Challenge - Second Round Match 5 / 8 Imperial College London v. St. Hugh’s Oxford

Here we are in the second half of the second round. Before we know it the quarter finals will be upon us. Still, for the time being lets concern ourselves with Monday night’s match. Imperial beat Southampton in the first round, while St. Hugh’s won the most exciting match of the first round, having beaten Magdalene on a tie break. Looking back over previous posts about these two teams there didn’t seem to be a huge amount to choose between them. So could we be in for a nailbiter ?

It didn’t look like it at first. Imperial raced away to 100 points before the ten minute mark, in which period St. Hugh’s were restricted to just 25. You’d have expected Imperial to get the Science questions, but to be fair they were hitting a lot of the other subjects too. Captain Amit, for example, correctly recognised that Adam Bede was written by George Eliot, even if the team failed to answer any of the bonuses. Poor Miss Brown of St. Hugh’s slammed the buzzer through the desk almost to answer that the International refugee passport is named after Roald Amundsen. Sadly it is a Nansen passport, and St. Hugh’s lost 5 points they sorely needed.

Mr. Freeborn bought these back and then some more by identifying a music clip as having been written by Tchaikovsky. But in truth this was little more than a gesture of defiance, since Imperial had disappeared over the event horizon long before the 20 minute mark. Again, Mr. Freeborn’s musical knowledge bought back a little of the deficit, but by this time Imperial already had 235 points. At this point St. Hugh’s began to show some of the form that had got hem into the second round. Having said that, although they were picking up some starters, the bonuses were rather harder to come by. Not that I should think that Imperial’s conversion rate was all that high tonight either.

Imperial came to life again for the last couple of minutes, and by the time the gong was struck they had amassed a highly impressive score of 280 to St. Hugh’s 80. Contenders, then ? Absolutely. As we’ve already noted there are quite a number of teams still left in the competition who could go all the way, and I for one have no intention of sticking my neck out and making a prediction at this stage. For which favour I hope all of the teams still in the competition are duly thankful.

Jeremy Paxman Watch

Just a couple of moments worthy of note tonight. To Brown of St. Hugh’s – “Calm down ! Calm Down ! “ She was understandably excited about taking full points on St. Hugh’s first set of bonuses , on Greek Mythology.Perhaps he was remembering her virtuoso desk slamming performance in the first round.
To St. Hugh’s, JP offered these few words of comfort after the contest – “You were an entertaining team to watch when you finally did buzz in, but you were slaughtered, I’m afraid. “

Interesting Fact I Didn’t Already Know Of The Week

Marie Curie is the only woman not born in France whose achievements entitled her to be buried in the Pantheon in Paris.

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