• Home
  • Fixtures
  • Tours
  • Gallery
  • History
  • Records
  • Statistics
  • Contact Us
  • About Us

    Sou’Westers Get Scrambled On Eggheads

    The Sou’Westers’ first ever appearance on television took place in December and no, we were not filmed playing in India or Australia, but appearing on BBC Television’s Eggheads programme. In a moment of madness late 2011, after canvassing various members on their possible interest, I had made the fateful application. Our experience started with an audition at a London hotel in February and our potential team of Pip George, Sam George, Tony Leek, Philip Oliver and I battled with five other potential teams in an informal session of communal and individual questions on a variety of the usual subjects. We felt we had done OK but were still surprised to receive the invitation to participate in the programme. Unfortunately, when our date in March for the recording was announced, in true Sou’Wester fashion we found ourselves one short, as Philip was committed to working in Abu Dhabi, on the pre-season MCC v County Champions match. Our reluctant, nominated reserve was Marion, but she had made it clear she would only score not bat, so a last minute ringer was recruited – a friend of Pip’s widely known for his general knowledge.

    The recording was to take place in the studios of BBC Scotland in Glasgow and our visit involved a flight from Stansted, an overnight stay and a 10am arrival at the studios. We were met by a couple of friendly production assistants who explained the procedure to us, starting with an inspection and approval of our selected shirt wear – club colours noticeable for their absence I’m afraid –  and a smothering of make-up by a delightful lady. After a tense half-hour wait we were escorted to the studio, passing the outcoming previous losers on the way, where the floor manager explained the studio protocol and ensured we were looking our best before asking us to take our seats. Shortly afterwards umpire, Jeremy Vine, and the five Eggheads entered, introduced themselves to us in a most friendly manner and took up their positions. The introductory music blared out and we were off!

    Pip opened the batting on History but unfortunately, despite getting all three questions right and being complimented by Jeremy Vine for both his quizzing ability and his youthfulness, he was yorked by Pat, who had, by his own admission, successfully guessed at least two of his answers, on the sudden death play-off. Each round was followed by a short break in recording to enable ‘make-up’ to ensure we were still looking our best. When Music appeared as the next subject, our music teacher Sam was pushed up the batting order, but was disappointed to receive three questions all relating to pre-1980 and he was caught out by his lack of knowledge of Englebert Humperdinck. Next in was Tony who, in true Leek fashion, invited the attractive Daphne to join him in the question room on Arts & Books and then made the fateful decision to go second. Getting stumped on American horror fiction before he had played himself in and two correct answers from Daphne then denied him a third question and his chance to hit her for six. Ringer John Battersby and I were now left to wag the tail, with John ready to take on Science, Geography or Food & Drink, but up came Sport and so I quickly used the Captain’s prerogative to challenge Judith on her least favourite subject. My luck continued and questions on cricket, the Olympics and horse-racing were longhops to me, and the Eggheads’ only mistake of the day by Judith was enough to see me into the final General Knowledge round with John. Unfortunately there was to be no successful last-wicket partnership and our knowledge of German playwrights let us down and we were all out!

    A brief photo session with the hosts completed our day and we caught the earliest flight back to Stansted, having lost by one run, but having enjoyed a most exciting match.