EQC: Best fifth place ever

November 8, 2015 in EQC

Not for the first time on this site, I will proceed to pen a blog about that most often ignored of finishing positions: fifth place.

After the morning’s exertions in the individual quiz (FYI England’s Olav Bjortomt comfortably retained the title) and an afternoon stroll around downtown Rotterdam (thanks to the world’s speediest tour guide, Lorcan Duff) we reconvened in the venue for the awaited fifth/sixth place playoff between Ireland and the Netherlands.

It was a joy to watch, from an Irish point of view, as initial nerves were steadied by the team getting out in to an early lead and remaining there. It wasn’t the most comfortable game to watch (and indeed live tweet) as the room wasn’t much bigger than the miniumum needed to house the two teams and the officials. Indeed, yours truly had to stand for the duration!


We’ve had close run things before. Here, the boys faced in to the final question set with a 54-48 lead, knowing they only needed one correct answer to secure the win. Personally, I’ve been involved in three matches which were lost on the final set of three. Thus, there was a joy, more beautiful for its rarity, when it turned out that they knew all three of the answers! Suddenly it was over, and fifth place was secured on a comfortable looking final scoreline of 63 to 48.

Congratulations to Lorcan Duff, Mark Henry, Kevin Jones and David Lea for achieving Ireland’s best-ever finish at the European Quizzing Championships! Next year: the semi-finals? No pressure.


After dinner, I joined with Kevin, Mark and Scottish quizzer Galen Chung for the club quiz. This is another table quiz (just like the Nations Cup qualifier) but with no proscription on the makeup of teams. Thus there can be some incredibly powerful groupings in action. Our team, the Celtic Warriors, were in the middle of the pack throughout the night, and that’s pretty much where we finished, in 15th place. Still, we had a lot of fun. It’s nice to have a quiz like the Nations Cup but without the pressure.

Finally, those of us who wanted to, sat the Hot 100 world ranking quiz. That’s EQC for you – a group of quizzers sitting down to do a quite hard paper quiz at 11.30pm. 🙂

The pairs event takes place this morning and I intend doing that. Albeit, I don’t yet have a partner. So, excuse me now whilst I head off to the ‘lonely hearts’ club at the front of the main hall, where I will hopefully meet someone else in the same boat…

EQC: Individual quiz morning

November 7, 2015 in EQC

Lunchtime on day 2 of the 2015 European Quizzing Championships and I’m sitting in the main hall, waiting for the finalists in the individual quiz to take to the stage.

Our own Lorcan Duff was almost one of them. The top 10 finishers in the morning’s paper quiz (think: Leaving Certificate) qualify for the final. As you can see here on the official results page, Lorcan’s 68 points was good enough for 12th place – just two points away from the final. So close!

Our results were: J-12th Lorcan Duff (68), J-20th Kevin Jones (64), J-29th David Lea (63), J-45th Mark Henry (59), J-49th John Nolan (58). Just a 10 point gap there between the five of us and I almost caught Mark Henry!

I take solace where I can find it…

Anyway, more to come later, including some questions for you to try.

EQC: A good day 1 for Ireland

November 7, 2015 in EQC

Day one at the 2015 European Quizzing Championships was an undeniable success for Ireland.  At its end, the Irish team stand guaranteed of their highest finish yet in the weekend’s main event, the Nations Cup.

Their 58 points in the opening event, the Nations Cup table quiz, saw Team Ireland finish in sixth place. This qualified them for a playoff against the auld enemy (that’d be Scotland) for the right to take part in tomorrow’s 5th/6th place final.  In a tight match, they emerged victorious by 40 points to 38!

Ireland now faces the host nation tomorrow, knowing that they are guaranteed a record finish for an Irish team – the previous best was 8th.  The Netherlands themselves finished 8th in the table quiz but then went on to surprise 5th place France in their semi-final.

Team Ireland: Kevin Jones, Lorcan Duff, David Lea and Mark Henry.

Team Ireland: Kevin Jones, Lorcan Duff, David Lea and Mark Henry.

Yours truly also took part in the opening table quiz, on a hastily-formed Aspirational Cup team alongside two Scots and a Latvian (the only one here this weekend, alas). Our team, Erasmusbrugh, was in a different league altogether – we scored a pretty disapointing 38, for a 20th place finish. However, under a new system introduced last year in Bucharest, the top 24 teams now get to face the knockout question set. Rather than finding separate rooms (and indeed hosts) for all these quizzes, this new system sees all teams back in the main hall, facing the questions in a table quiz fashion.

Once again, we were way back on what Team Ireland achieved. However, our 24 points was enough to defeat our head-to-head competitors, Levon and the Stokers, in the much-coveted 19th/20th playoff. 🙂

Erasmusbrugh: Mark Rae, Uldis Adsalons, Neil McCaskill and myself.

Erasmusbrugh: Mark Rae, Uldis Adsalons, Neil McCaskill and myself.

The night then concluded with a fun quiz hosted by a very funny Dutch lady, from the hosting committee. I’m sorry to say I have forgotten her name but, if I find it out today sometime, I will amend the article.

She presented the quiz in the ‘Dutch’ style, which reminded me nothing so much as school excercise books! One round featured answers where we were already provided with the initial letter and also told how many letters the word included. For another, she provided a list of colours in advance of the questions, telling us that each answer would involve at least one of these. I subbed in for David Lea on the Irish table for this one. We had a good bit of craic but finished down the running, somewhere around 8th place.

This morning sees the day kick off with the Individual quiz qualifier at 9.30am. I’ll report back on how we all got on if I get a free moment around lunchtime. If you’re impatient, keep an eye on the IQO Facebook page, as it will also be getting updates throughout the day. Finally, stats fans can check out the official EQC results page.

This could be Rotterdam…

November 6, 2015 in EQC

dutch-windmillThis year’s European Quizzing Championships will kick off this afternoon in Rotterdam.  You can find out more about it via the following link: www.europeanquizzingchampionships.com.

After taking a year off last year, I am currently en route to this year’s event.  (Aside: thank you Dublin Airport and your free wifi.)  Ireland are sending a five-person team this year: David Lea, Kevin Jones, Lorcan Duff, Mark Henry and myself.

Guess who’s fifth-ranked out of the group? Yes, ’tis me.  That means I obviously won’t be a member of the Nations Cup team (aside: #coybig!) but I will still get to take part in all the events.

Here’s the weekend’s quizzing schedule:

16:15 National Teams and Aspirational Cup qualifying
20:30 National Teams and Aspirational Cup semi-finals, and placings matches
22:45 Fun Dutch Quiz

9:30 Individual Quiz (part 1)
13:30 Individual Quiz final
15:00 Aspirational Cup final and final round of placing matches
19:30 Club Team championship
23:00 Hot 100

10:00 Pairs Championship
14:00 National Teams final

Stay tuned to the blog here for my reports on each of the events and how the Irish team got on.

Answer from Delighted with a fifth place

September 7, 2015 in Quizzes


Meet Sophie Tucker

Here are the answers to the post I put up way back last week sometime.

Thanks to my dad, my aunt Louise and my cousin Michelle for making it such an enjoyable 80% of a quiz.  If only we’d been there for (crazy idea!) the start of round one…

Weren’t the dingbats quite difficult? When you do a lot of quizzes, you tend to see this type of round a lot and, as with cryptic crosswords, you learn how to do them. In this case though, we struggled badly and, if I recall, only scored 4/10. I met a man ‘up the town’ a day or two later who’d also done the quiz. The dingbats were the first thing he wanted to talk about. “We were sure we had four,” he said. “Turned out we only got one of them.”

Also, can’t say I’d ever heard of Sophie Tucker. Even when the answer was announced, I was none the wiser. It’s an answer I’ll remember for ever more though!

We did much better in the cars and cities round, scoring 9/10 in both. Car 7 and city 8 got us – even though we tried several cities with that particlar ending!

Answers after the click…

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How to be delighted with a fifth place finish

August 28, 2015 in Quizzes

fifth-placeThis site is almost dormant, I know.  However, this state of blogging hibernation isn’t due to me failing to transcribe quizzes and turn them in to articles.  No, I haven’t been selfishly holding on to quiz info and experiences and not sharing them with you.

Instead, I must admit, the blog is a faithful representation of the amount of quizzes I have done in the last year.  To summarise: not very many.

I was roused out of my quizzing apathy last weekend by my father, who had noticed that the golf club of which he is a member was going to be a venue for a charity table quiz on Saturday night.  “Sure, you say you’ll come along and I’ll have no trouble finding some others,” he assured me.  In the end, at about 8.30pm on Saturday night, we ‘volunteered’ his visiting sister Louise and her daughter, my cousin Michelle.

Anyway, off we headed for the golf club.  The quiz was down for 9.30pm but himself was certain that ‘Irish time’ would be in play and that our arrival time, 9.50, would be “grand”.   Cue us arriving in to the club bar, to hear the quizmistress recapping the questions from round two.  Doh!

Since we’d come this far (and the quiz was for charity) we decided unanimously to stay and take part regardless.

Thus, you can now see where the post title comes from.  We had a great quiz, finishing on 60/80.  It was good enough for fifth place!  Prior to the last round, we even got a shoutout from the quizmistress who’d noticed that, despite completing two less rounds than everyone else, we were by then in joint-fourth.  Alas, our form slightly deserted us in that last round, and we scored just 6/10.

Still, it wasn’t anywhere near being disappointing enough to take the happy feeling away from our group of Nolans.  For the record, the winning table scored 74/100.

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2015 World Quizzing Champs

June 2, 2015 in Quizzes

2015_world_quizFor more info: www.facebook.com/events/582452458524054/

Celtic Nations 2015 photos

April 28, 2015 in Celtics