Elimination match - Festival Fans v. General Practitioners
Last week we saw the Corpuscles become the first team eliminated from the tournament this year. On Monday we saw another elimination match between the Festival Fans and the General Practitioners. The Fans - Ed Dovey, Stewart McCartney and captain Marianne Fairthorne, lost to the Francophiles in the last round of their first match. Their opposition, the GPs - Jo Durrant, Chris David and the skipper, Mike Crowe, were beaten by the Fell Walkers. They too had been well in contention, but were seen off in the last round. Form guide no help? Well, the Fans had looked better all rounders in their first match, but there’s a limit to how much you can tell just from the one match.
Round One – What’s the Connection?
GPs elected to go first. Two Reeds revealed some pictures – the late Francis Bacon, the artist – a pork pie hat. Obviously pig meat products. If you got Francis Bacon, then you were away, which is exactly what the GPs did. Twisted Flax for the Fans revealed Hank Morgan – Henry De Tamble , who was the Time Traveller’s Wife’s Husband– Gary Sparrow – which was Nicholas Lyndhurt’s character in “Goodnight Sweetheart” and Marty McFly. So all were Time Travellers. Water showed the GPs Freda Fry – “Metropolis” – Gromit – 4’33”. I didn’t get it until the last – which is John Cage’s silent piece of music. The GPs didn’t get it then. The Fans were happy to take the bonus on that one. Lion gave the Fans a go at the music set. They didn’t get it, but the GPs knew that the Partridge Family – Taylor Swift – Counting Crows and The Eagles were all birds. I had it from the first and last, but didn’t know the other two. Good game, with both teams picking up the other’s leftpvers. Eye of Horus showed Birmingham – Paris – Roubaix Cycle Race. Now – that race is famously partly run over murderously cobbled streets. Could it have anything to do with that, I wondered. No, I thought when Glinda in The Wizard of Oz appeared. Then it struck me that I think the race is also nicknamed the Hell of the North. Could Glinda be the good witch of the North? Anthony Gormley’s statue confirmed this. Nice set. The GPs had it at the death. The fans were not, I was sorry to see, given the chance to stress the second syllable of Horned Viper when Victoria said it leaving the syllable unvoiced. Shame. Harrogate=Mercury. kicked off. Marion of the Fans was absolutely brilliant on this. She said , of course, that Hg is the symbol for Mercury and made the intuitive connection that it is also the postcode for Harrogate. Wonderful set, wonderful shout, which brought the Fans a deserved lead of 7 to 5.
Round Two – what Comes Fourth?
GPs kicked off with an unvoiced second syllable of horned viper. We saw 14: Fra Mauro. Well, I think I’ve told you of my great fascination with the Apollo Space Programme before, haven’t I. “11: Sea of tranquility!” I shouted, annoying the hell out of Mary, who was asleep in her chair. 13: Nowhere and 12: Ocean of Storms confirmed it. The GPs didn’t have a Scooby. The Fans knew it. Lion gave the Fans some pictures, filled in different coloured silhouettes of the Angry birds characters. I didn’t get it till the blue, but then neither did the Fans. Didn’t matter to either of us, it was still points in the bank when we both said the red bird. The GPs took on the might of the Twisted Flax and got Quarterly – Biannual – Annual . It seemed fairly obvious to all concerned that this was biennial, and so it was. Two Reeds gave more pictures – a tumbler of an ambler fluid – a cocktail glass with a vodka drink – and here the Fans again had a great shout. He takes a whisky drink – he takes a vodka drink – he takes a lager drink – they worked it out and I was nowhere near it. Cider is next in the song Tubthumping. Brilliant shout. Water showed the GPs Private Secretary – Under Secretary of State – Minister of State – so of course, the next would be Secretary of State. Eye of Horus finished the round. We saw Ease – Eyes – and I had it at the same time as Marion did, suggesting ewes – being phonetic renditions of the vowels. The GPs were playing well, but blimey, the Fans were playing a blinder, leading by 15 – 9.
Round Three – The Connecting Walls
The Fans kicked off with the Lion Wall, A good performance would certainly give them the whip hand going into the missing vowels. They soon sorted Washboard – Airer – Mangle and Dolly Stick – all used in laundry. Then Barnet – Do – Coiffure and Mop are all terms for hair. They knew what the last two sets were, and after a clever process of elimination they separated them on the first attempt. We saw Doubtfire – Malaprop – Robinson and Grundy – all fictional Mrs. Finally Porterhouse – Flat Iron – T-Bone and Strip are cuts of meat often used in steaks. A full house of 10 was very much what the doctor – if not the GPs – ordered.
The Water wall then needed to see the GPs take a full set to have any realistic chance of coming back in the last round. They were certainly quick separating the first two sets. Blade – Hulk – Iron Man and Daredevil were all Marvel superheroes. Jif – Dime – Immac and Oil of Ulay have all switched to their international name. A beautiful set of Decade – Prime Minister – Bo Derek and Fly Half – which are all linked by the Number 10 was unraveled, which also unraveled the last set of Hurdles – Marathon – Sprint and Relay – which are all types of running race. So this kept the gap down to large if manageable proportions.
Round Four – Missing Vowels
The first set, all had UK number 1 hits in the 1950s fell 3 – 0 to the GPs and the Fans lost a point as well. Gap down to 2 and squeaky bum time for the Fans. Triangular things fell 2 – 1 to the GPs. Gap down to 1, and even squeakier bum time. Fictional Johns fell two apiece, and the music still hadn’t started winding up. Quick walls buy a lot of time for the last round, you see. Types of tea, again, 2 apiece. Now one word winners of the Best Picture Oscar. Marion took the first – Unforgiven, and there was no need for forgiveness from her team, since it was enough to provide a two point win. Very bad luck GPs , who lost by 28 to 30, but the Fans, I think, were the better overall team on the night. Well played, and good luck in the semis.