Honour and glory in Athlone

December 2, 2013 in Quizzes

Guest blog! Yes, I know you’re probably waiting for the answers to the questions posted on Friday. However, this is more news-worthy. My partner from the Pairs at the European Quizzing Championships, Mark Henry, took part in the massive St Brigid’s International Sports Quiz on Friday night and here is his report. Tomorrow, I will post a special, bumper, double post of sports answers!

eaglesOn Friday night all the girly cousins and their mammies were coming over to my house to watch the Late Late Toy Show with my two very excited daughters. So I had a very difficult choice: to stay in with Ryan Tubridy or attend the St. Brigids GAA club International Sports Quiz in the Hodson Bay Hotel, Athlone. Anyhow, my loyalty to my teammates in The New Eagles (made up of Peter, Lorcan Sr., Michael and myself) finally won out.

Normally, when I go to table quizzes my local team’s policy is to give the prize back to the charity. However, with prizes of €3,000, €2,000 and €1,000 per team for 1st, 2nd and 3rd, this wasn’t going to happen tonight! This was not withstanding the two well-deserving charities, Mayo-Roscommon Hospice and Pieta House, that were benefiting.

It promised to be a night full of craic with a couple of the lads that were on Off the Ball (Newstalk) until recently compering. There were 80 tables competing. In other words, 319 testosterone- and probably Guinness-filled Jimmy McGees. I say 319 as I think I spotted one brave lady among them all.

Before the quiz, I was hoping the questions were going to be more international than national but was reassured that we had Irish soccer and GAA experts in Lorcan Sr. and Peter respectively. In the bar, Michael was listing of all the Gold Cup/Grand National winners of the last 40 years (my specialist subject) so I was saying these lads don’t need me at all.

There were due to be 10 rounds of 10 question with double points for the last round. It was going to be a three hour sports quiz marathon – right up my street. We kicked off round one with a solid 9 out of 10. Questions were based on events of 2013. We thought this would be average given the sharks that were probably there. Our lost point was caused by the fact that we didn’t know who Wigan beat in Rugby League Challenge Cup.*

After three rounds, a noticable trend was emerging with The Middlesborouey Maulers out in front on 26 points, our team in second on 24pts, St Pat’s on 23 and The Kingdom on 21 points.  As a Rebel, I would be happy if we just beat the Kingdom!

Then disaster, as we thought, loomed in the next round – a picture round of sporting trophies. We thought we were sure of the Claret Jug (British Open). In fact, it turned out to be The America’s Cup (very similar).  We couldn’t believe it. We were pleasantly satisfied to get 6 out of 10 and were gobsmacked when we saw The Maulers only had 4 out of 10. We were still in the mix. Indeed, at the halfway stage we were one ahead on 48, The Maulers on 47 and St Pat’s on 43.

In rounds seven and eight, we slipped back with two rounds of 7/10.  Not shabby, as there were some tricky questions (examples at the end). However, The Middlesborouey Maulers had got a very impressive 9 and 10 and were powering ahead. We thought we still had a chance going into the last round. We were three behind with 20 points on offer.

First question: Pep Guardiola and which two other managers have led their teams to two European Super Cups? We got the answer wrong and were up against it.**

However, when the final result was called out we were thrilled as were called out in second place with 84 pts. The Middlesborouey Maulers had lied up to their name and mauled the opposition with a very impressive 92/100.  In the words of Jimmy McGee they were “different class”.

Congrats to Shane Curran and St Brigid’s GAA Club on a brilliant night. There were strict rules on cheating, with mobile phones in plastic bags provided on the table. Anyone leaving on a mid-quiz loo break was barred from re-entering until the end of the round. I hope they raised loads for their charities and would love to do it again.

On coming home my other half said “Isn’t that better than winning the World Quizzing Championship?” (where there were no prizes). All I could say is “It’s all about the honour and glory”.

A few sample questions from the night:

  1. Who is the oldest player to play Senior Rugby for Ireland?
  2. Ospreys Rugby is made up of which two clubs?
  3. Ken Doherty lost in two world Champonship Snooker finals. To whom?
  4. How many GP wins have Jordan won in F1 racing?
  5. Who is the only non-Welsh player to touch the ball in the famous Gareth Edwards try for the Ba-Ba’s in 1973?
  6. Who has been Ireland’s only World Showjuming Champion?
  7. From which club did Liverpool sign Philippe Coutinho in 2013?
  8. Who is the capt of the Ulster Rugby team?
  9. On which racecourse did AP Mc Coy recently achieve 4,000 career wins? ***
  10. Who the the player who scored the last goal in one FIFA World Cup and the first in the next?

Thanks Mark and congratulations on your great achievement!  As I said above, we’ll have the answers to these questions here on the blog tomorrow.

Update: answers here.

Footnotes:
* Answer Hull
** Alex Ferguson and Louis Van Gaal
*** Coincidentally, this exact question was asked in the Claremorris Sports Quiz as well!

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