Monday, November 29, 2021

BC Cup 2021 - Report

 Set by Aditya Gadre, Aniket Khasgiwale and Yash Marathe

Format: After no tournament last year on account of the pandemic, this year we decided to the take the BC Cup online. Hence the format was sligtly modified for this year. 

For starters we had a 40 question elim to determine the 8 quarter finalists. The elim was specially designed to deter googling - with automatic transitions every 40 seconds and significant efforts put to ensure questions are not google-able. For the first time ever, we used guinea pigs for a BC Cup set - from the point of view of google stress testing. (On that note, many thanks to Sumant, Rajiv, Abhinav and Yasho). 

The rest of the quiz was the same format - 60 question quarter to determine the top 4 for the semi finals. 40 question semi-final to determine the top 2. A 28 question final to determine the winner. The only difference was that we also shared the question in the chat window so that people could read the question (another BC cup first) which was necessary for time management. 


The 12th edition of the BC Cup saw the strongest field ever with 60 stalwarts from all over the country taking part. The elims were intentionally on the tougher side and in our opinion did a great job to identifying the best quizzers to go ahead to the Quarter Finals. Prithwish Datta and Kinshuk Biswas joint top scored with 18 points. We has a bit of a snafu with 1 question which impacted 2 individuals - hence we took 10 quarter finalists for this year. The cut off was 12 points with 2 stars.  Venky Srinivasan actually qualified with 13.5 pts but unfortunately had another engagements and had to pull out of the quarters. 

The Quarter Finals

The top 10 in the quarter finals were:

Prithwish Datta, Kinshuk Biswas, Gokul S, Arnold D'Souza, Suraj Menon, Anannya Deb, Deepanjan Deb, Venkatraghavan S (Ingit Sir), Samrat Sengupta, and Ranajeet Soman. 

The quarters as expected were a very close affair - with at least 5 different people in the lead at various points of time. Most of the time all 10 people were separated by 1-2 points across the 60 questions. Over time Prithwish, Deepanjan and Ingit sir pulled away and had secured qualification spots, with all 7 other individuals in contention with 3 questions to go. Suraj and Samrat both pulled out clutch answers to stick their nose ahead (6 pts) leaving 4 others tied on 5 going into the last question. Ranajeet - routinely called BFQI (Best Football Quizzer in India) - got the last question on direct - and somehow missed a question around his pet topic and favourite club in football - to ensure that only Suraj and Samrat go into the tie breaker to decide the last semi final slot. 

Suraj won the 3 question tie breaker 2.5 - 1 and booked his spot in the Semi. 

The Semi Finals: 

The top 4 were: Suraj, Ingit sir, Deepanjan and Prithwish

All participants started well and everyone was close by with one third of the semis gone. But then Deepanjan and Prithwish both started pulling brilliant answers out of nowhere to build a lead over the other two. Deepanjan took it to another level all but booking his slot in the final with a few questions to spare. Suraj then made a good comeback with a few great answers and was just 1 point behind Prithwish with about 5 questions to go. But then Prithwish got 2 of the last 5 and comfortably booked his slot in the final. 

The Finals:

Prithwish and Deepanjan faced off in the BC Cup final. Prithwish in his fourth consecutive final and Deepanjan in his first. Deepanjan won the toss and decided to go second. Prithwish missed his first question and Deepanjan scored a crucial away goal to put the pressure on right from the outset. He then scored another away goal - to take a commanding 2-0 lead with just 7 questions gone. Deepanjan started his set well scoring a goal on his question to make it 3-0 but then Prithwish pulled back two quick away goals on consecutive questions to make it 3-2. Prithwish's second home set started familiarly with Deepanjan scoring an away goal on the first question to make it 4-2, but the rest of the set was a washout, fatigue surely now setting in as we entered out 6th hour of quizzing for the day. Deepanjan's last set started with an away goal from Prithwish to make 4-3. Prithwish now ensured that he just needed to tie to win since he had matched Deepanjan on 3 away goals with this answer. Deepanjan duly answered the next question to make it 5-3. The next few questions were unanswered, and we came to the last 2 questions both of which Prithwish had to score to win. He missed the second last question and Deepanjan won the highest scoring BC Cup final in years. 

BC Cup Winner 2021: Deepanjan Deb  

Runner Up: Prithwish Datta 

List of BC Cup Winners:

2009: Sameer Deshpande and Suraj Menon

2010: Anannya Deb

2011: Anannya Deb

2012: Sumant Srivathsan

2013: Ramkey V

2014: Prithwish Datta

2015: Samrat Sengupta

2016: Shrirang Raddi

2017: Suraj Menon

2018: Suraj Menon

2019: Prithwish Datta

2020: No tournament

2021: Deepanjan Deb 

Monday, September 27, 2021

BCQC September Open | Report on the Science-Fiction Quiz

 Quiz: Sci-Qi (a Science- and Speculative Fiction Quiz)

Date & Time: 26 September 2021 at 10 am Pune time / 25 September 2021 at 11:30 pm Austin time
Venue: A series of tubes (a.k.a the QM's and participants various homes, connected via Zoom)
QM: Mohit Karve

Winner: Sumant Alone (Sumant Srivathsan) - 110 pts
Runners Up: Swadeshi House Mafia (Abhimanyu Badhauria, Rishiraj S) - 82 pts
3rd: Rohirrim (Srijon Sen) - 80 pts
Jt 4th: KatsuCurry (Arpita Shetty, Siddarth Raman) - 65 pts
Jt 4th: TLJ Was Good, Actually (Avaneendra Bhargav, Kunal Sawardekar) - 65 pts
6th: The H Squad (MV Harshavardhan, Harish V) - 58 pts
7th: ILAM (Akshit Mehra, Akshat Kukreja) - 45 pts
8th: The Pramans (Abhinav Dasgupta, Vivek Tejuja) - 40 pts

Mohit Karve is a old BCQC hand, being part of the COEP Quizzing Renaissance of 2006-2012, and is well remembered by people who were quizzing in Pune during that period (both for the excellent quizzes he set as well as for being the victim of the most egregious Hand of God incident since Peter Shilton). While we have missed his quizzes these past 10 years, the present circumstances and the online nature of all quizzing these days allowed us to participate in one of his quizzes (with him very kindly agreeing to conduct at an un-earthly hour for him).
We started out with a 25-question elims that had 20 1-part question and 5 2-parters. The questions had a nice spread of topics, including some based on Hindi science fiction shows that aired in the 1990s.
8 teams made it to the finals, which had two sets of 17 questions on IR, each preceded by a 4-question written round on linked topics. The quiz had no pounce - a rarity these days but a necessity to ensure the quick completion of a quiz that was already stretching into the wee hours of the morning for the QM. However, the drawbacks of a pounce-less quiz did show in that the almost inevitable disparity in difficulty between the questions made itself felt very keenly. The finals had a great spread of questions as well, ranging from the very first appearance of a key sci-fi mechanic to actual inspiration behind a beloved Indian entry in the sci-fi genre. 
Sumant kept up a lead throughout the entire quiz, maxing both written rounds and scoring 40 and 30 in each of the IR sets. KatsuCurry (Arpita and Siddarth) and Rohirrim (Srijon) put up a strong showing in the second half of the quiz, equaling (in KatsuCurry's case) or nearly equaling Sumant's score in that half, but they could not overcome the large lead he had built up in the first half. KatsuCurry's burst of form in the second half did catapult them from the last position they occupied at the halfway mark to joint 4th place, with the rest of the standings staying pretty consistent through the whole run of the quiz.
My one quibble with the topics covered would be that for an event billed as a Science- and Speculative-Fiction quiz, the topics tended to stick very closely to the Sci-Fi end of the scale and there was very little of fantasy, alternate history and other spec-fi genres. Within Sci-Fi though, the coverage was quite good with questions on sci-fi concepts and classics going back over a century, and including all your favourite science fiction franchises along with lesser-known entries in the genre as well.
All in all, the quiz made for a very enjoyable Sunday morning, even for those of us who do not normally rise so early in this part of the week. We hope to see more of Mohit (and other BCQC alums) setting quizzes like this in the future.

Sunday, September 19, 2021

BCQC September Open - The Ajai Ragde Memorial History-Geography Quiz - Report

 Quiz: The Ajai Ragde Memorial History-Geography Quiz

Date & Time: 12 September 2021

Venue: Held over Zoom

Format: Elims + Finals

QMs: Kunal Sawardekar and Omkar Dhakephalkar


1st: WIMWI Manaram: Rajiv Rai, Srinath B, Vinoo S at 274
2nd: Vetes Vulpes: Tathagata Chatterjee, Archana Gupta, Ninad Sapute at 21
3rd: ROTF: Navin, Swami, Manu at 204

4th: Trevlling Kilroy: Anurakshat Gupta, Anirudh Anilkumar, Arnabh Sengupta at 201

5th: Aila Jumbo: Ravi Mundoli, Ashwin Kumar, Samanth

6th: Hammer and Tongs: Shouvik Guha, Anannya Deb, Jayashree Jayakar Mohanka at 182

7th: QuizElite: Abhinav Dixit, Sushmita Sharma, Adarsh Dixit at 97

8th: Three’s Company: Keshav, Ajay, Debashree at 58

A History Geography Quiz is an apt way to pay tribute to an esteemed member of the community and Mr Ajai Ragde was definitely one. I remember quizzing with him in BCQC Opens and by virtue of the draft system used in the finals, has couple of times even teamed up with him. History geography politics were his thing and he would stoically sit through the usual pop culture shit that youth quizzers of today revel in. In his mind, he must have been lamenting, purvicha Pune quizzes rahile nahin.

The responsibility of setting and conducting the quiz was entrusted in the able shoulders of messieurs Kunal ‘Psaw’ Sawardekar and Omkar ‘Dhake’ Dhakephalkar. Both have a strong record in setting good enjoyable quizzes and this latest specimen was no less.

To start with, we had a 30-question prelims with answers to be filled up in a Google Form, as has become a common practice in the era of Zoom quizzes. The questions were compact and pithy and led to very precise answers. Of course, some participants still debated with the QMs on the validity of their guesses, throwing Wikipedia entries as citation. The QMs very efficiently handled the situation and carried on. The cut off for the finalists was 24 and I was one of the top 8, having in typical Pune style, done a deal by teaming up with MahaQuizzers Shouvik Guha and Jayshree Mohanka.

Moving to the finals, we had 32 questions on the pass with 3 sets of 4 written questions, each set on a certain theme. The first one was on colonial flags where the flash usually had some elements of the European power and an element referencing the colony. The second one was on panhandles The third set was on paleogeography.

The main set of 32 questions was on infinite bounds using the Arnold Variation. The QM, Psaw, correctly admonished an impertinent query on whether it should be called the Bangalore IR format. In addition there was pounce, of course, naturally, since it’s a Pune invention

The questions were super. My favourite was the reasons why there was a precise record of the date and time of a cataclysmic event in one part of the world (because of records kept about a very specific orphan tsunami in another part of the world).

The quiz was won by WIMWI Manram, the super group team of Vinoo Sanjay, Rajiv Rai and Srinath Bashyam. The finals started with 8 teams and ended with 6, a bit like in a long-distance race. That's one of the banes of the online quiz era. A normal which would have taken 2-3 hours offline now take 5-6 hours. Teams take ages to discuss on their team group chats and if they want to pounce they ask for time saying network issues.

Overall, an excellent quiz covering all continents and all eras from paleolithic era to modern day. We shall, hopefully, come back next year when this becomes an annual event in the BCQC calendar.

Report by: Anannya “Dada” Deb

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

BCQC August Open Quiz 2021 - Let There Be Rock - Report


Quiz: Let There Be Rock, the BCQC Rock Music

Date & Time: 8 August 2021, 10 am

Venue: Held over Zoom

Format: Written Quiz | 40 Qs worth 50 points

QMs: Aditya Gadre & Navin Rajaram

In 1977, AC/DC proclaimed ‘Let There Be Rock’. Cut to 44 years later in pandemic times, our QMs thought it was best to follow the sermon and rock it out at 10 in the morning on a Sunday. Yes, please! Hundred-and-twenty individuals also seemed to be in agreement, as we saw incredible participation of 60 teams. Thank you, everyone!

A written quiz ensures all teams get to have a crack at every question, with no one going home (err, yeah) feeling left out and suffering the wrath of a prelims. And, what better than hearing good music all the way through! And, it’s here where the best bit about the quiz was - the focus was on music listening. The quiz had a high number of audio and videos, as any good music quiz should be. Given this stress on multimedia, the quiz was also conducted glitch-free and at a leisurely Sunday pace, despite there being Dada’s General Quiz to follow.

Full points also for the research put into the quiz, covering a wide gamut of topics, including genres, film soundtracks, album covers, song origins and band name etyms, music videos, cover versions,  guitar techniques, samples and inspirations and a lot more.

The quiz was dotted with a bunch of quirky tidbits – ranging from naming a 60s band from Liverpool (not the Beatles! Hint: Liverpool FC) to identifying Grace Slick from her paintings (question showed images from Alice in Wonderland as drawn by the Jefferson Airplane vocalist) to naming Wish You Were Here based on a clue that the LP sleeve was packed to trap the smell of burning human flesh! However, the unanimous decision on the best question of the quiz was probably Anu Malik sir taking ‘inspiration’ from KISS’ I Was Made For Loving You Baby ft. Sallu bhai.

The bulk of the questions seemed to border around classic and hard rock from the 60s and 70s (perhaps QM bias?). Higher representation from the so-called modern eras and other genres of rock music could have possibly made it a more well-rounded quiz. Music from this century also only made few isolated appearances. To talk about a pet peeve, the count of three questions on Indian rock, a goldmine that it is, could perhaps have been slightly more. Incidentally, two of those were from the post-2000s era!

That said, kudos to the QMs for keeping the quiz accessible and interesting with a heady mix of core funda and workoutables. The quiz mostly concentrated on all the big names and famous songs – from Led Zep to Alanis Morissette to Hendrix to Elvis to RHCP to GnR to Van Halen’s Eruption to Who’s Tommy to Zero’s PSP12 to Heart’s Barracuda, to name a few.

A special mention to #SoccerKils (Udupa & Santosh). Fact that they won the quiz isn’t why we’re writing about them, but the margin by which they pulled it off is astounding. They completely maxed the quiz with a phenomenal score of 49/50. One question had to be cancelled due to a Zoomcommentboxgate. The next best score was 43 and then a bunch of teams clubbed in the 38-37 range.

To reiterate, great music was always at the forefront of this quiz. As a parting gift, our generous QMs actually created a Spotify playlist featuring every song that found its mention in the quiz, resulting in 4 hours of rockgasm. Give it a listen! Playlist follows the report.

I heard it through the grapevine that the QMs are planning further editions of this quiz and if the first one is anything to go by, it’s most noble a decision.

P.S: The lack of any funda on The Beatles in a rock music quiz was taken up by the diarist and amicably settled in an out-of-court settlement with the quiz-setters. Pfft.

Clickhere for the playlist.


49   #SoccerKills     Thejaswi Udupa     Santosh J.S.

43   Pebble Fans     Nikhil Sonde     Sumant Srivathsan

38   Definitely Maybe     Arijit Sen     Indranath Mukherjee       
       Corrosion of Conformity     Mihir Jayaraman     Nitish Khadiya

37  Fleetwood Macbeth     Gopal Kidao     Srivats Ram
      Bridge over Roger Waters     Sethu Madhavan     Berty Ashley
      Sultans of Fling     Samyak Chaturvedi     Amrit Visa

35  RajaRam Jam/EyeHateGadre     Varun Rajiv     Ashwin Kumar

34  Masters Hammer     Aswath Venkataraman      Rahul Raguram
      In the Annals of History     Bodhisattva Basu     Annway Ghosh

33  Do It Duet     Akash Gupta     Arun TP
      Eleanor Rigby's Revolver     Kunal Roy     Siddhanth Rao
      Mamas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Quizbois     Anisha Karnail     Nandagopal

31  Van Halen T-Shirt     Jamie David Lee Roth Anderson     Angus Eddie Van Halen Creighton
      North Campus Pop Art Experimental Teamup     Arnuv Joshi     Rupak Jain

30  Vowel movement     Sohan     Adi
      Chowder Mookie     Neel Chaudhari     Dhruv Mookerji
     Fossils Fan Club     Arindam Dutta     Debanjan Bose
     Mostly Ordinary     Troy Cumpsty

29  Inglorious quizzards     Samiran Mondal     Joy Bannerjee
      Abhishek     Abhishek Kapoor
     Potentially Hazardous Objects     Paul Hillman

28  The Ozzy Akhtar project     Suraj Menon

27  Rock N'Rolla     Nikhil Soneja     Sandeepan Chaudhuri
      Mohiner Ghoraguli     Abhiroop Dey     Arijit Malakar

26  Greta On Fleek     Sumo     Vikram Rajan
      Polk Salad Annie     Aniruddha Sen Gupta     Srijit Kumar

25  Cohen Cobain Kalidas     Souhardya Pramanik     Agnidev Bandyopadhyay
      GoVansa     Govind Grewal     Vansa David
     Wu Han Clan     Rushabh Menon     Shashwat Salgaocar
     Coffee and Ebony     Sahil Gupta     Pranav Pawar

23  Fortunate Sons     Adit     Prahlad

Report by: Debanjan Bose

Monday, August 09, 2021

BCQC August Open Quiz 2021 - In August Company - Report

Quiz: In August Company (General Quiz) 

Date & Time: 8 August 2021 at 1:30 pm

Venue: Zoom

QM: Anannya Deb 


1st: Two Proctors and a Doctor (Dr. Navin Jayakumar, Abhinav Dasgupta, Avinash Mudaliar) - 170 pts

2nd: Peter Panchali Parajito (Debanjan Bose, Sachin Deshpande, Sourjo Sengupta) - 140 pts

3rd: Dream team (Arnabh Sengupta, Anirudh Anilkumar, Shaayak Chatterjee) - 133 pts

4th: Rana Protip (Venky Srinivasan, Kunal Sawardekar, Ranajeet Soman) - 127 pts

5th: East Bengal United (Shouvik Guha, Prithwish Datta, Deepanjan Deb) - 123 pts

6th: Narulkar, Nerulkar, Punekar (Sania Narulkar, Samrat Sengupta, Aditya Gadre) - 120 pts

7th: Remembrance of Things Fast (Navin Rajaram, Manu Sudhakar, Swaminathan Ganesh) - 107 pts

8th: Huey Dewey Louie (Akash Gupta, Arun TP, Zaman Khan) - 103 pts

9th: No Name (Krishnamurthy Ganesh, Rajagopal PS, Ajay Parasuraman) - 83 pts 

10th: Maris Troika (Thejasvi Udupa, Santosh Swaminathan, Ramkey V) - 72 pts 


Anannya Deb aka Dada has made it a habit of conducting super quizzes in his unique, nonchalant style - and this was no different. 

We started with a written elim which had sparsely worded, crisp questions on a wide range of topics - including topics that Dada unapologetically includes which feature in no other QM's quizzes. The elims were a mix of workoutable and TIL - which is a good way to eliminate in my opinion. Also Good Guy Dada was lenient and decided to take 10 teams into the finals because the bottom two teams were very close to the cut off. 

The finals had 2 written rounds. One on North Eastern Guitarists - one of those topics which no one else will put a question on in their quiz, let alone three. And the other on Olympic posters which teams did better at. 

There were two passing rounds had 18 questions each. The questions were clustered in loosely defined (whimsical) triads across a large variety of topics. Dada managed to make seemingly obscure stuff also interesting and most admirably - covered an insane geographic spread in his quiz - from Africa, to South Asia to South America. This is something that most QMs struggle with and tend to restrict to the US and UK. The quiz also very nicely operated in the intersections of topics - politics and sport, lifestyle and work, stories and history, fauna and folklore - and wasn't really focused on any one topic per se. In that sense the quiz felt truly 'general' and not like it had a preponderance of any pet topics. 

As for the results - the quiz was handsomely won by Team 3 - but at least 5 other teams were in contention for a podium finish till the last few questions. We had some cracking answers and on another positive note - people were on video and seemed to take part in the quiz in the right spirit.