Friday 3 March 2017

Mastermind Finalist Mohan Mudigonda on his Mastermind Experience

Mohan, one of the stars of the 2017 series, originally left this comment in response to the review of the Grand Final. I found it searingly honest, interesting and inspirational as I read it, and I'm sure other LAM readers will too, which is why I've taken the liberty of reposting it here: -

"I’ll not go through the feelings I experienced in the first round and semis; David summed things up beautifully in his posts and I suspect my feelings of getting through would mirror the hundreds of other contenders who came before and who will come after.

I’m not overtly religious but I do believe in a higher power and I did pray to whoever was Upstairs the night before the final. I didn’t pray to win. That is somewhat facile and besides, I’m not six and there were five other supremely talented contenders who wanted the same thing. I simply prayed that whatever the outcome, that I could be proud of my performance and feel good about how I acquitted myself.

I must confess that nearly four months on, that feeling of pride has not quite found its way to the forefront. The human mind is an incredible thing. It allows us to rationalise so many things, and yet at the same time, our emotions conflict with our rationale.

I had reached the last six of one of the most difficult and most coveted quizzes in existence. Though it meant so much, there would be no negative repercussions for not winning the trophy. I would not be jobless, nor would I lose my family or home as a result. However, as a wise man once said (I wonder who David…  ) “just because something isn’t important, doesn’t mean it does not matter”.
By the same token, just because I was disappointed with myself, does not remotely mean that I was not in absolute awe of my fellow contenders and in particular Isabelle.

Having seen the performances of all my fellow finalists throughout the series, I have been blown away. Steven’s 31 in his opening round, John’s superb SS rounds, Frances’ and Lynne’s calm and collected semi- final performances and of course, Isabelle’s outstanding performance in the final.
Afterwards, I congratulated Isabelle, who magnanimously said that she got lucky with her questions. Not a bit of it. She would have won no matter what questions came up. In addition, I felt truly inspired by the fact that she had appeared on the show three times previously. She clearly wanted this so much and it was written in the stars. Many congratulations Isabelle if you are reading this. I could not be happier for you.

In closing, I will always be grateful for this incredible experience. The final was bittersweet, I cannot deny, and I can’t help thinking that I did a bit of a Leicester City in getting to the final. I fully intend to reapply and keep doing so until I win, but somehow, I wonder whether this year is as good as it is going to get.

Whatever may happen, I’ll always remember the feeling of sitting in ‘that chair’; the total feeling of surprise when told that I’d be going to New York for my final insert and being in sheer awe of how hard working, talented and kind the production crew were during the whole process.
Truly, this has been an experience I will cherish always. Despite being put through the emotional wringer, I’ll be doing it again first chance I get.  "

We'll be watching out for you, Mohan, and will be wishing you all the best.

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