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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.

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After the ball

June 3, 2012 in IQO, Quizzes

The 2012 World Quizzing Championship is over for another year.  Or rather, the questions in the World Quizzing Championship are over but, like last Thursday’s referendum, the counting is still going on one day later.

The counting at our Irish heat, which took place in Buccaneers Rugby Club in Athlone yesterday morning, took significantly less time.  Admittedly, we did only have 19 competitors as opposed to the 1,600-odd (in 13 languages) that the International Quiz Association have to deal with.

On the day, the plaudits went to well-known Dublin quizzer, Lorcan Duff who scored best in Athlone with 120 points.  Yours truly was second on 114, a slight improvement on the 111 I scored in last year’s event.  As this rate, I’ll be in contention for the World Title in about 24 years!

Getting back to this year, David Fay (Dublin) finished third whilst Paddy Duffy (Belfast) was the best-placed* quizzer in the 30-and-under category and Senan Murphy (Ballina) was victorius in the 60-and-over division.  Alas we had no competitors in the 20-and-under and 70-and-over sections.

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World Quiz day timetable

May 5, 2012 in IQO

As announced on Facebook last evening, the Irish heat of the World Quizzing Championship now has a home. It will take place in The Bounty, which is the clubhouse at Buccaneers Rugby Club, Ahtlone, Co. Westmeath, on Saturday, June 2nd.

This is a solo quizzing event and is run along the lines of a day during the Junior or Leaving Certificates. Albeit, a short day at the Leaving Cert, as the two papers are only one hour long each.

Here’s the timetable for the day’s events:

  • 11am: Paper 1
  • 12 noon: Correction of paper 1
  • 12.30pm: Lunch
  • 1.30pm: Paper 2
  • 2.30pm: Correction of paper 2
  • 3pm: Results and presentation of local awards*
  • 3.30pm: Innaugural meeting of the Irish Quiz Organisation

For more information on how the event is run, please read my report on last year’s event or visit the International Quizzing Association’s site

It costs €5 per person to enter and all are welcome.  Please book your place in advance though as we have to print out a copy of the two papers for each competitor.  You can do so via email at


* We will have small awards for the best result in the venue in the various categories.  For more info, check out the worldquizzing site.

They don’t do a medal for fourth, answers

November 23, 2010 in Quizzes, Rehab

Jackie Tyrell - as most of us would recognise himFollowing on from yesterday’s photographic treat, here are the answers to those questions from last Friday’s Rehab All-Ireland Quiz final.

As Mike mentioned in Sunday’s post, Mícheál Ó Muircheartaigh is a host par excellance. He supervised the giving out of a spot prize at every gap between the rounds.  Nothing novel about that you’ll say but, in this case, prizes could only be claimed by knowing the answer to a question dreamt up by the man himself. He does have a talent for coming up with tiny links between questions and GAA trivia and most of the questions followed this template.  On one occasion however, he outdid himself and pretty much gave away the answer to one of the actual questions from the previous round, well before the collectors had completed their duty.

The question  (in the round) had been “In which sport does a team have to travel 2.5 metres to win?”

At the end of the round, Mícheál then offered a spot prize to the first person who could tell him who was the first man to have an All-Ireland winner’s medal and an Olympic gold medal.  “And I think it was actually for tug-of-war, funnily enough.” Cue groans from the teams that had already written said answer down. 🙂

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They don’t do a medal for fourth, pictures

November 22, 2010 in Quizzes, Rehab

Thanks very much to my team-mate Mike for taking care of yesterday’s blog post.  His blog was entertaining and told the tale perfectly. Curse you, ‘Name the Year‘ round!

I’ll be posting the answers to the featured questions later. In the meantime, I’ve included a rarity on a gallery of photos!

Click ‘Continue…’ to check them out.

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They don’t do a medal for fourth, do they?

November 21, 2010 in Quizzes, Rehab

John’s away this week, so Mike here to give a brief account of Friday’s All-Ireland Table Quiz final.

I’m sure Eamonn Coghlan could tell it in an interviewer’s face when the question approaches: “Tell us about when you finished fourth in the Olympics”. Gentleman that he is, he no doubt responds with a smile and a query: “Are you referring to the 1500 meters in 1976 or the 5000 meters in 1980?” Fourth place stings. Fifth? Sound. “You were off the pace. It wasn’t your day.” Sixth? “Ah, sure you tried your best?” This gentle intro has no doubt informed you that John, Dave, Shelly and I finished fourth on Friday night. Chronological order be damned: stick the important fact up front. If the scoreboard is to be believed, we’re the best quiz team in Galway (West of the Shannon, even), but we were pipped to the cash prizes. More about that in a while.

First up, it was an enjoyable quiz, with Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh pretty much an ideal quizmaster. How he managed to connect a question about the Indian Ocean (and many more besides) to a random bit of GAA trivia was quite an achievement. Such tangents have not been seen since Bugs Bunny missed that left turn at Albuquerque and ended up in ancient Rome. It was a fairly brisk ten rounds of six questions, all posted up on the big screen: a presentation tool that we’d recommend for every big quiz, especially when hosting duties are delegated to Mumblor the Magnificient. The standard of questions was pretty high, as the few we missed should suggest, as were the contestants. I don’t recall at what stage I looked at the scoreboard – again, very professionally done and often updated – but there were 23 teams within three points of the leaders!

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