After a 2-year delay due to the pandemic, in April 2022 Dublin played host to the eighth Celtic Nations quizzing championships, featuring the cream of quizzing talent from Scotland, Wales and Ireland doing battle in a weekend-long quizzing tournament.
And what a tournament it was! Not only was it a welcome return to in-person quiz events for many people, it was a particularly memorable weekend for the Irish: for only the second time in the history of the tournament, Ireland were crowned Celtic Nations champions!
For a detailed account of the weekend, here’s a writeup courtesy of Mark Lynch from the IQO committee:
The Celtic Nations Quizzing Championships made a welcome return to the quizzing calendar on the weekend of the 23rd, 24th and 25th of April this year. Originally due to be played in April of 2020 before COVID called a halt to those plans, players from Ireland, Wales and Scotland arrived at the Carnegie Court Hotel in Swords for a thrilling and enjoyable weekend of quizzing.
After a few drinks at the eve of quizzing social on Friday night, the competition kicked off in earnest at 10am on Saturday the 24th of April with the first meeting of the weekend between Ireland and Wales. Ireland got off to the best possible start, winning all three matches at A, B and C level. The A’s had a 16 point margin in their 53-37 point victory. The Ireland B team were involved in a much tighter game but came through in the end with a 9 point victory winning 36-27 while the C Team put in a phenomenal display, cruising home on a scoreline of 54-21.
Next up came the Individual written quiz which was won by Scotland’s Jonathan Gibson with a superb score of 82, securing his country the 60 points for victory. However the top five was rounded out by three Irish players with Patrick Carthy, Brian Craythorne and Dave McBryan taking up the next 3 positions on the leaderboard with scores of 80, 79 and 77 respectively. Mark Grant of Wales closed out the top 5 on 76 points, a score that was also achieved by 3 other players but Mark edged them out by virtue of having correctly answered one question more on the tie-breakers. However, with a further 3 Irish players also finishing in the top 10 overall, it was already shaping up to be a great weekend for the Irish team.
Next up came the written pairs section of the competition. This was won by Ireland’s Mark Henry and Lorcan Duff with a score of 76 securing a huge 116 points to the Irish total with Scotland’s Jonathan Gibson and Jack Pollock edging out Ireland’s Dan O’Malley and Eva Barrett for 2nd place on tiebreaker questions having both scored 67. It was what was happening below the top 3 however that well and truly turned the tide Ireland’s way, with the next 3 positions in the leaderboard all adding a distinctly green hue at the top of the table, and meaning that a good performance against Scotland in their upcoming match would give Ireland an unassailable lead by the end of day one.
The above situation became a reality as Ireland’s A and B teams secured the relevant points to secure the competition a day early. Ireland A won by 63 pts to 36 while the B Team narrowly edged out their Scottish Opponents on a score of 50 to 46. Meanwhile, Scotland took the C game on a score of 44-37 – the damage however had been done and for the 1st time since 2016 Ireland were the Celtic Nations Quizzing Champions. The last formal event of the day was was the first round of Scotland vs Wales team matches, followed by an Only Connect-style fun quiz written and compered by Dan O’Malley. After a long day of quizzing, it was time to eat: hungry quizzers had a choice of Chinese or Indian restaurants, both located a short walk away in Swords village. After dinner, Karen Crofton and John Nolan held a Fifteen To One-style “last quizzer standing” competition – appropriately enough, this was won by Ireland’s Dave McBryan, who had been the first series champion of the revived Fifteen To One in 2014. Some informal buzzer quizzing until the wee small hours rounded off the evening.
On Sunday morning, the 3 return international fixtures were played, and as expected the Scottish team as defending champions came out fighting – securing victories at A and C levels winning 63-46 in the A match and 26-72 in the C match. Ireland however avoided a clean sweep by winning the B match by the narrowest of margins (53-52). Next up was the return Wales matches and Ireland again put in a strong showing, winning the A and C matches and drawing the B match 37 all. The Ireland A team closed out their competition with a 53-41 victory while the C team had a comfortable 39-16 victory. In the final matches of the weekend Wales A secured a double over Scotland A while Scotland’s B and C teams had comfortable victories over the Welsh counterparts.
This left the final points total for the weekend at Ireland on 1,249 points, Scotland on 889 points with Wales scoring 365 points. For a second time, Ireland are the Celtic Nations Quizzing Champions – a great result for the quizzers in green, who will look forward to attempting to defend their titles in Wales in 2023.
Individual top 20
- Jonathan Gibson (Scotland) 82
- Patrick Carthy (Ireland) 80
- Brian Craythorne (Ireland) 79
- Dave McBryan (Ireland) 77
- Mark Grant (Wales) 76
- Mark Henry (Ireland) 76
- Jack Pollock (Scotland) 76
- Tim Hall (Ireland) 76
- Lorcan Duff (Ireland) 74
- Stanley Wang (Scotland) 74
- Rob Sutherland (Scotland) 71
- Eva Barrett (Ireland) 70
- Ian Volante (Scotland) 70
- Kevin Leetion (Scotland) 68
- Innis Carson (Scotland) 67
- Dan O’Malley (Ireland) 67
- Andrew Frazer (Scotland) 66
- Ailsa Watson (Scotland) 65
- Kevin Jones (Ireland) 65
- Barry Simmons (Scotland) 63
Pairs top 10
- Lorcan Duff / Mark Henry (Ireland) 76
- Jonathan Gibson / Jack Pollock (Scotland) 67
- Dan O’Malley / Eva Barrett (Ireland) 67
- Paddy Duffy / Kevin Jones (Ireland) 63
- Patrick Carthy / Dave McBryan (Ireland) 61
- Brian Craythorne / Tom Mead (Ireland) 61
- Gareth Aubrey / Lawrence Cook (Wales) 59
- Rob Sutherland / Galen Chung (Scotland) 58
- Carol Cronin / Tim Hall (Ireland) 57
- Ailsa Watson / Andrew Frazer (Scotland) 57
|Wales A||56||–||41||Scotland A|
|Wales B||52||–||32||Scotland B|
|Wales C||27||–||47||Scotland C|
|Scotland A||36||–||63||Ireland A|
|Scotland B||46||–||50||Ireland B|
|Scotland C||44||–||37||Ireland C|
|Ireland A||53||–||37||Wales A|
|Ireland B||36||–||27||Wales B|
|Ireland C||54||–||21||Wales C|
|Wales A||51||–||50||Scotland A|
|Wales B||38||–||58||Scotland B|
|Wales C||24||–||64||Scotland C|
|Scotland A||63||–||46||Ireland A|
|Scotland B||52||–||53||Ireland B|
|Scotland C||72||–||26||Ireland C|
|Ireland A||55||–||43||Wales A|
|Ireland B||37||–||37||Wales B|
|Ireland C||39||–||16||Wales C|
- Individual quiz (questions only)
- Individual quiz (questions & answers)
- Pairs quiz (questions only)
- Pairs quiz (questions & answers)
- Fun quiz
- Team quizzes:
A wide array of photos were taken during the weekend and posted on the IQO Facebook page: