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Manchester go for glory in Challenge final

Manchester have the opportunity to retain their University Challenge title in the final of the popular TV quiz on Monday evening.

Having smashed Bangor University in last week’s semi-final, Manchester will take on University College, London in a rematch of one of their three quarter-final matches, which Manchester lost by 230 points to 150. Team members David Brice, Adam Barr, Richard Gilbert and Debbie Brown will face Jeremy Paxman – and some of the toughest quiz questions on television – as they seek to defend Manchester’s title.

“Let’s just say, it’s pretty exciting!” team captain Richard Gilbert told The Mancunion ahead of tonight’s contest. “Hopefully, our run will do some good towards maintaining the uni’s reputation – some prospective students see University Challenge as something of a gauge, so maybe we’ve inspired some applications!”

The road to the final has been anything but smooth, with an unlikely comeback required to pip Lincoln College, Oxford by just five points in their first round match.

Nonetheless, a win would see Manchester become only the second university to win back-to-back championships in the show’s 51-year history, and would see the 39,000-strong institution draw level with Magdalen College, Oxford at the top of the all-time leaderboard, with four University Challenge victories.

The Mancunion will be joining the team at The Ducie Arms pub and live-blogging the final from 7pm at We’ll be bringing you minute-by-minute coverage and exclusive reaction from the quizzing quartet, as well as the views of some past winners.

The final will be shown on BBC Two on Monday night at 8pm.

Tags: Manchester, richard gilbert, Stephen Pearson, university challenge

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Andrew Williams

Andrew Williams is The Mancunion's Features Editor, having previously edited the Politics section of the paper. A PPE graduate, he is studying for an International Relations MA in a last ditch bid to cling on to his student days. For rants about football, obscure pop culture references and wine-induced streams of consciousness, you can follow him on Twitter @andyonpaper
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