Good evening friends, and here we go again! My reviews of the first two matches were a bit on the long side; I usually try and keep my reviews shorter in the early rounds and then gradually and subtly increase as the series goes on. So, I'll try and keep things a bit conciser this week, though don't hold me to that.
The London Business School is appearing in only its second ever UC series; its first, back in 2005-06, saw it impressively reach the semi-finals, where they were soundly beaten by eventual winners Manchester. The second L.B.S. team in the show's history were:
John Butterworth, from Bristol, studying Business Administration
Frederick Ruess, from Germany and Switzerland, studying for an MBA
Captain: Fraser Maddox, from Dunbar, studying for an MBA
Malia Valenzuela, from Lima, Peru, studying for an MBA
Hertford College Oxford has appeared twice before on the BBC series, firstly a first round exit in 2010-11; its second team, in 2018-19, reached the second round, and on it was Chris Page, who has since won £250,000 on WWTBAM?. This year's Hertford team was:
Matt Hitchens, from South London, studyign Philosophy
Bridget Donaldson, from Morpeth in Northumberland, studying Engineering
Captain: Matthew Lloyd, from Barnes in London, studying Physiology
Lucy Oswald, from Central London, studying Astrophysics
So off we set for the third time this series, and it was Mr Hitchens who identified JF Kennedy for the first starter; the bonuses saw the Oxonians guess correctly twice in a matter not that unreminiscent of the Warwick team that won last series, a full house. L.B.S. followed off the mark with Mr Butterworth doing their honours, but they only took one bonus from their first set. The sides then swapped starters again, Hertford taking a starter and two bonuses, before L.B.S. took the first picture round, on national emblems in the Soviet style; another sole correct cut the gap to 45-30.
The lead was increased again when Mr Lloyd (whom I wonder whether he is related to Jacob Lloyd of the winning Balliol Oxford team from a few series back) took two successive starters, and both occasions saw the Oxonians add two correct bonuses to their score. Mr Hitchens gave them a third in a row, giving them a bonus set on leprosy, which they got the same two correct of as I did. The music starter saw Mr Butterworth first to identify Fatboy Slim; the bonuses, on 90s pop songs that sample film dialogue, gave the Londoners two correct starters, to reduce their arrears to 105-50.
They increased again though when Mr Hitchens was first to identify the metaphysical poets, and, once again, two bonuses were taken (I knew the one they didn't get). Another starter and pair of bonuses pretty much put the game beyond L.B.S.'s realistic reach, but Mr Ruess did take the next starter for them; the bonuses, on Australian birds, saw them take one and give Paxo a scoffing opportunity with another with a suggestion of 'ostrich'! The second picture round, on paintings depicting women and snakes, went to Hertford, who took yet another pair of bonuses, which took their lead to 165-65.
The game was over as a contest, but L.B.S. did at least manage a late rally to respectability, with Mr Ruess taking two successive starters; one bonus from the first set, and two from the second, on poisons used in Agatha Christie novels, saw them deservedly reach three figures. Mr Lloyd took the final starter, identifying Rovers as the suffix shared by the football teams from the places listed; their bonus run ended when they only took one from the resulting set, but it mattered not. At the gong, Hertford won 180-100.
A nice match, with two pleasant and watchable teams, well played both! Thanks to L.B.S. for playing, and giving a respectable account of themselves. And well done to Hertford, a good team on the buzzer and the bonuses, could be one to watch in the next round; best of luck to them there!
The stats: Mr Lloyd was, narrowly, the best buzzer of the night with four starters, while Messrs Butterworth and Ruess both got two each for L.B.S.. On the bonuses, L.B.S. managed 8 out of 18, and Hertford a solid 18 out of 27, and there were no penalties all night.
Next week's match: Emmanuel College Cambridge vs St Andrews
Only Connect continued its first round with its third heat, with the Apollos, Tim Robinson, Rob Butlin and captain Terry Prett, and the Jukebozers, Bhagwan Manky, Laura Myles and captain Paul Mackely. The former led 6-2 after the first round, and an evenly scoring second round saw them maintain the lead at 10-6 (I claim 3 points on the Xbox question). Two perfect walls maintained the gap again, 20-16, but the Jukeboxers fared much better on Missing Vowels and came from behind to win 27-22.
Brain of Britain was won by Toby Cox, who I believe was on UC in 1998-99 as part of the second placed Oriel Oxford team captained by David Stainer; he scored a full six on his first round of questions and was never overtaken, though was run close. He finished on 14 points; Rachel Pagan and Michael McPartland, both OC alumni, finished second and third with 11 and 10 respectively, and fourth participant Joyce Fulbrook finished with 4.