Results (43 questions):
1st: Harish Kumar, Ramanand, Manish (draft) [D]: 70 pts
2nd: Meghashyam, Maitreyi, Nandan Gokhale(draft) [E]: 60 pts
Jt. 3rd: Suvajit C, Aniket, Rohan Chokkar (draft) [A]: 45 pts
Jt. 3rd: Yash M, Vinay, C V R Sastry (draft) [B]: 45 pts
Jt. 3rd: Suraj, Yasho T, (draft), Abhinav [C]: 45 pts
Jt. 3rd: Aditya, Kaustubh, Samit [F] (draft): 45 pts
Elims: highest: Aniket+Suvajit (21/35); cutoff: 11
Participating Teams: about 35
Conducted with customary elan by Niranjan, this was however the most restrained set of questions I've seen from him. Earlier efforts have been full of maze-like framing & intricate connects, but clearly, recent trends have been towards simpler presentation (most notably seen in last year's visuals quiz) and less cognitive overload.
The elims were good, though some questions perhaps needed some more information to crack. The set was undeniably tough, but workable. Over the years, Niranjan's prelims have usually been superlative, combining interest & creativity in equal measure, but this one was a couple of carats short of his usual top tier.
In comparison, the finals were much better: he opened with a couple of very nicely made questions. There were fewer questions this time, and a lot more time to think, which was very much appreciated by this reviewer. There were the usual questions bordering on "eh?" but there was a conscious effort to steer clear of the usual areas. Consequently, there were more questions on unexplored Indian topics & even mutilated fauna, and very few on pet topics such as films & sport.
As the scores show, there seemed to be something for every team. Going into the last 13 questions, any of the teams could have taken top spot. We were lucky for a couple of things to go in our favour. We had managed only 3 out of the first 30, and managed to get 4 in the last 13. Even at the end, we didn't know we had won, but it was clear it had been very tight.
Played in excellent spirit by all teams and with great interest from the audience, this was a fine quiz.
Thanks to Landmark (Pune) and Blaft Publications for co-sponsoring prizes, and Persistent Systems for allowing use of their splendid auditorium