A Question of Sport fans nostalgic as clip of Paul O’Connell giving the ‘greatest answer in quiz history’ resurfaces after BBC axed the show


BBC bosses on Friday night dramatically axed A Question of Sport after running for more than 50 years.

And that evening, one fan took to X, formerly known as Twitter, where they got nostalgic as they shared a short video from the long-running show.

The user penned: ‘A Question of Sport has been axed after 53 years. We’ll always have this moment, when Paul O’Connell gave one of the greatest answers in quiz show history. So good.’

The clip showed Sue Barker hosting a quick-fire question and answer round when AP McCoy’s correct answer meant Phil Tufnell’s team was awarded with two missing letters from a hangman style two-word puzzle. 

Sue clarified that the words they were trying to guess were ‘anything to do with sport… before asking: ‘Do you want to move on?’

A Question Of Sport fan took to X, formerly known as Twitter, on Friday where they got nostalgic as they shared a short video from the long-running show

A Question Of Sport fan took to X, formerly known as Twitter, on Friday where they got nostalgic as they shared a short video from the long-running show

The user penned: 'A Question of Sport has been axed after 53 years. We¿ll always have this moment, when Paul O¿Connell gave one of the greatest answers in quiz show history. So good'

The user penned: ‘A Question of Sport has been axed after 53 years. We’ll always have this moment, when Paul O’Connell gave one of the greatest answers in quiz show history. So good’

The clip showed Sue Barker hosting a Q&A when AP McCoy's correct answer meant Phil Tufnell's team was awarded with two missing letters from a hangman style two-word puzzle

The clip showed Sue Barker hosting a Q&A when AP McCoy’s correct answer meant Phil Tufnell’s team was awarded with two missing letters from a hangman style two-word puzzle

After Phil asked his team mates: ‘Shall we move on?’ Paul O’Connell, who had been intensely studying the board nudged the team caption, to indicate he wanted to have a guess.

With just two out of the 23 spaces filled, Phil continued: ‘Have you got it? Are you sure? It’s a really long second word!’

Paul then stated: ‘Borussia Mönchengladbach, no?’ the name of a football team in Germany‘s Bundesliga

‘Let’s see if your right…’ responded Sue, before the letters lit up to reveal he’d guessed the correct answer, with the audience left shocked while his teammates erupted into celebrations.

Even the opposing team’s captain, Matt Dawson, took to his feet to give a standing ovation as cheers rang out the television studio. 

It comes after the BBC announced it had decided to axe A Question of Sport.

Making the shock announcement, the Corporation blamed inflation and dwindling ratings as the long-running sports quiz show that spanned more than 1,300 episodes was cancelled.

The decision to halt production comes after long-running host Sue Barker was sacked, sparking fury among viewers.

With just two out of the 23 spaces filled Paul correctly guessed 'Borussia Mönchengladbach' the name of a football team in Germany 's Bundesliga

With just two out of the 23 spaces filled Paul correctly guessed ‘Borussia Mönchengladbach’ the name of a football team in Germany ‘s Bundesliga

His teammates erupted into celebrations while the opposing team's captain, Matt Dawson, took to his feet to give a standing ovation as cheers rang out the television studio

His teammates erupted into celebrations while the opposing team’s captain, Matt Dawson, took to his feet to give a standing ovation as cheers rang out the television studio

It comes after A Question of Sport was axed by the BBC on Friday night

It comes after A Question of Sport was axed by the BBC on Friday night

Numbers have been dwindling on the sports show since popular host Sue Barker left in 2020

Numbers have been dwindling on the sports show since popular host Sue Barker left in 2020

Paddy McGuinness was brought in to replace Barker in 2021, joined by two new team captains

Paddy McGuinness was brought in to replace Barker in 2021, joined by two new team captains

The show first debuted in 1970, and initially fronted by former Match of the Day reporter David Vine, but is best known for being presented by Barker, who captained the programme for 24 years.

The Wimbledon semi-finalist joined the programme in 1997 quickly progressing to become the face of the show.

The former tennis star was removed from the programme with captains Matt Dawson and Phil Tufnell, so that bosses could draft in fresh talent to revamp the long-running sports quiz.

Ex-tennis player Barker as a BBC host in 1996

Ex-tennis player Barker as a BBC host in 1996

Paddy McGuinness was brought into to replace Barker in 2021. Olympian Sam Quek and retired rugby star Ugo Monye replaced Dawson and Tufnell as team captains.

A BBC spokesperson told MailOnline tonight: ‘Due to inflation and funding challenges difficult decisions have to be made, therefore Question of Sport is currently not in production at the moment.’

When McGuiness was drafted into replace Barker, he said: ‘I love the fiercely competitive nature of sports stars coupled with having a laugh. 

‘That’s why ‘A Question of Sport’ has always been one of my favourite shows and having been weaned on it from an early age, this is an honour and opportunity I’m certainly not taking lightly.’

McGuiness said that he will attempt to put his own mark on the show, which was previously hosted by David Coleman and David Vine.

He added: ‘I grew up with both Davids hosting but it’s Sue who made this show her own. She will always be A Question of Sport icon, but I’ll try my best to stamp my own mark on it.’ 

The show, which was first broadcast in 1970, has always had a loyal viewership of around three to four million per episode but has failed to attract young viewers. Ms Barker is pictured here in 1998 with the then team captains - footballer Ally McCoist, left, and snooker star John Parrott

 The show, which was first broadcast in 1970, has always had a loyal viewership of around three to four million per episode but has failed to attract young viewers. Ms Barker is pictured here in 1998 with the then team captains – footballer Ally McCoist, left, and snooker star John Parrott

Barker, 64, (centre) were ousted as host of BBC's A Question Of Sport, alongside team captains Matt Dawson (left) and Phil Tufnell (right), to allow bosses to draft in fresh faces

Barker, 64, (centre) were ousted as host of BBC’s A Question Of Sport, alongside team captains Matt Dawson (left) and Phil Tufnell (right), to allow bosses to draft in fresh faces

Barker admitted she was left 'slightly damaged' after being axed from the show after 24 years

Barker admitted she was left ‘slightly damaged’ after being axed from the show after 24 years

But earlier this year, he revealed his Top-Gear co-star and pal Freddie Flintoff warned him ahead of hosting BBC’s panel show A Question Of Sport. 

‘For me personally, the pressure I felt, I felt it more for ‘A Question of Sport’ than Top Gear,’ he said.

 ‘I remember Freddie [Flintoff] when I got the job, and he rang me up and said ‘Oh God, be careful because it can be talked about online and stuff,’ he added.

The show’s heyday was in the 1980s, breaking records in 1987when 19million tuned in to watch Princess Anne take part. 

At the time, David Coleman was running the show along with team captains Bill Beaumont, Gareth Edwards and Emlyn Hughes. 

Beaumont was the one of the longest serving captain making 319 appearances, being beaten by footballer Ally McCoist who starred in 363 episodes. 

The BBC quiz show was fronted by Barker from 1997 until she was replaced by McGuinness

The BBC quiz show was fronted by Barker from 1997 until she was replaced by McGuinness

Audience numbers dropped to an average of 850,000 this series (Paddy (centre) pictured with new team captains Sam Quek (left) and Ugo Monye (right))

Audience numbers dropped to an average of 850,000 this series (Paddy (centre) pictured with new team captains Sam Quek (left) and Ugo Monye (right))

While Barker was still presenting, 4million people were still tuning in to watch the show, with the number almost halving to 2.2million when Mr McGuiness took over. Soon under a million viewers were tuning in. 

In 2022 ratings for Question of Sport slumped to an all time low dropping to an average of 850,000.

One episode on August 19 peaked at 750,000, with the programme being beaten by a Channel 5 show about Britain’s Poshest Farm Shops.

Between four and five million viewers regularly tuned in when Sue was host before she was given the boot in 2020 when bosses decided to refresh the programme.

Insiders working on the show said the presenters and captains have been informed of the show’s demise and were ‘gutted’, the Mirror reported. 

It is a particular blow for McGuiness, 50, who lost his presenting show on Top Gear earlier this year when the BBC announced it would scrapped for the ‘foreseeable future’. 

Princess Anne starred on A Question of Sport in 1987 with a whopping 19m viewers tuning in

Princess Anne starred on A Question of Sport in 1987 with a whopping 19m viewers tuning in

David Coleman, Emlyn Hughes, Princess Anne and Bill Beaumont

David Coleman, Emlyn Hughes, Princess Anne and Bill Beaumont

Last week BBC bosses complained that the recently announced £10.50 licence fee increase is not enough and will result in programmes ‘that audiences love’ being axed.

Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer revealed that the household payment would jump to a total of £169.50 as she announced a review into the broadcaster’s funding model. 

The broadcaster’s governing body, however, has said the below-inflation rise, will have an impact on its content budgets and as a result ‘have a significant impact on the wider creative sector across the UK’.

In a statement the board said the increase will mean ‘further changes on top of the major savings that we are already delivering’.



Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *