Written by Ellis Ian Fields

Monday, 13 September 2010

image for University Challenge: Magnificent Magdalen

Magdalen, Oxford vs Durham.

"Maudlin." It was an elderly chum who put me right. The same chum who, while showing Mrs Fields, the Brunette Scot and I around Cambridge, was asked (very politely) at one of the colleges whether he was an alumnus.

"Oh no. I went to the other place," he replied, confidently.

"Oh, fair enough - please have a look around." And so we got to see some of the loveliest architecture Cambridge has to offer.

Magdalen walked this with what Paxo described as a "terrific score." He was right. Magdalen have to be among the favourites to win the series.

They were in control after an early exchange of nip-and-tuck. After the mid-point they were always at least 100 points ahead. Very sharp.

There was much to enjoy about this particular bout: Magdalen's skipper, Chan, had a floppy barnet and plummy accent - both super; on the same team, McComish (doing a D Phil, by the way) expressed a happy dismissiveness that such a question should be considered worthy when he answered any "starter" - particularly when identifying the prophet Jeremiah. "Are you really asking this?" he seemed to say.

Durham, on another day, would, no doubt, have fared better. Kudos to their Griffiths who was well up on his modern movie characters - Star Trek, Star Wars, Batman, Hannibal Lecter.

There were some impressive displays of knowledge in this game, and that was one of them.

Down sides: only one female (Durham's McGough) and, once again, too many post-grads.

(Col Juan is away).

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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