By Lydia Blundell and Anna Tatham
Durham University has been defeated by the University of Edinburgh by a score of 180-110 in the University Challenge semi-final.
Representing Durham were Matthew Toynbee, Cameron Yule, Siân Round and Ben Murray, whilst Edinburgh was represented by Fitz-James, Campbell Hewson, Malusà and Booth.
Durham’s team started strongly, but an archaeological bonus question saw Edinburgh reclaim their hold on the competition.
Niche knowledge, typical of University Challenge, was demonstrated by Edinburgh’s success in a round on swans.
At various times, both teams were at a loss for answers as they were faced with very difficult questions.
Edinburgh twice lost five points on opening questions.
The episode begun close-fought but Edinburgh became increasingly dominant. Ten minutes into the competition, Durham was on 40 and Edinburgh on 35.
Toynbee’s usual prowess and knowledge in a round of eponymous rules in electrostatics could not regain Durham’s grip on the competition.
A set of questions on 100 years of US financial trends puzzled Durham as they sought to fight back.
The team had previously been victorious in their other quarter-final matches, beating Edinburgh 165-110 and Glasgow 170-110.
With ten minutes to go, Edinburgh had 95 points and Durham 60. However, Edinburgh put in a strong performance to widen their margin of victory to 70 points.
Competitors in the semi-finals of University Challenge this year were Durham, University of Edinburgh, Darwin College Cambridge and St. Edmund Hall Oxford.
Back in August, Durham beat the University of Strathclyde by 360 points to 55, which secured their place in the second round.
Durham then made it to the quarter-finals after triumphing over Keble College Oxford 200-100 in the second round of this year’s competition.
Durham University has won University Challenge twice in its history, in 1977 and 2000.
The show aired on BBC2 at 20:00 this evening. You can catch up on the episode on BBC iPlayer.
Photograph: University Challenge via BBC