A Question of Sport

A Question of Sport

Infobox Television
show_name = A Question of Sport

caption = Sue Barker, Matt Dawson and former captain Ally McCoist
format = Sport, Comedy, panel game
runtime = 30 minutes
creator = Nick Hunter
developer =
executive_producer = Mike Adley
Carl Doran, Caroline Roberts
starring = Sue Barker,
Matt Dawson,
Phil Tufnell
country = UK
network = BBC One
first_aired = 5 January 1970
last_aired = present
num_episodes = 800+
website = http://www.bbc.co.uk/questionofsport
imdb_id = 0239185
tv_com_id = 20921

"A Question of Sport" is a long-running BBC quiz show which started on 5 January 1970 and continues to this day.

It involves two teams of sports stars answering questions on their own and other sports. Each team has a resident captain, each of whom is joined by two stars of world sport.

Having run almost uninterrupted since 1970, the show is now Britain's longest continuously-running game show. As of 9 November 2007, there have been 800 shows.

Presenters and team members

The show was hosted by David Vine until 1978, and then from 1979 until 1997 was anchored by veteran BBC commentator David Coleman. Since his retirement, the show has been hosted by ex-tennis star Sue Barker, who once served as a mystery guest in 1982 when she was dressed in a skunk costume and was identified as a man by both teams by mistake.

Many team captains have enjoyed stints on the show down the years, including:

Cliff Morgan (Rugby Union player) (1970-75),
Henry Cooper (boxer) (1970-77),
Bobby Moore (footballer) (1974),
Bobby Charlton (footballer) (1974/75),
Fred Trueman (1976),
Brendan Foster (Athlete) (1977),
Gareth Edwards (1979-81),
Emlyn Hughes (footballer) (1979-81 and 1984-88),
Willie Carson (Jockey) (1982-83),
Bill Beaumont (Rugby union player) (1982-96),
Ian Botham (Cricketer) (1988-96),
John Parrott (Snooker player) (1996-2002),
Ally McCoist (footballer) (1996-2007),
Frankie Dettori (Jockey) (2002-04),
Neil Ruddock (footballer) (2004) ,
Michael Owen (footballer) (2004),
David Seaman (footballer) (2004),
Matt Dawson (Rugby Union player) (2004-present) ,
Jamie Redknapp (footballer) (guest captain, 2007),
Shane Warne (Cricketer) (guest captain, 2007),
Darren Gough (Cricketer) (guest captain, 2007) ,
Phil Tufnell (Cricketer) (guest captain, 2007)(Regular Captain 2008-present),
Ricky Hatton (boxer) (guest captain, 2007) and
Gary Speed (footballer) (guest captain, 2008).

Of these, Cooper, Charlton, Moore, Hughes, Beaumont, Carson, Botham, Parrott, McCoist, Ruddock, Dettori, Owen and Dawson were still active participants in their sport while appearing in the show. The others had retired. Ex-footballer Ally McCoist and rugby star Matt Dawson were the most recent team captains. McCoist has now left this role, as he is assistant manager at Rangers. His last show was aired on 18 May 2007. Several guest captains took his place throughout 2007 and early 2008 before Phil Tufnell was named as the new permanent captain in February 2008.

Sports stars often say they know they have 'made it' when they are invited to appear on "A Question Of Sport". The sports personality with most guest appearances is Steve Davis, who has appeared 18 times.

In 1987, Princess Anne appeared as a guest on the team captained by Emlyn Hughes, just weeks after the ex-footballer had embarrassed himself by claiming a photo of her on a horse was jockey John Reid. The show achieved "Question of Sport"'s highest ever ratings of approximately 19 million viewers. It was the first time a member of the royal family had appeared on a television quiz show. Anne's daughter Zara Phillips also appeared on the show twice in 2006, the latter for a Sport Relief edition.

However Hughes' embarrassment would not be as bad as Ally McCoist or Shane Warne in 2007. During the part of the show called Mystery Guest (see Quiz Format). It was McCoist's turn and he failed to realise it was his own boss at Rangers FC ,Walter Smith that was disguised. Also, in the 700th edition of the show, a compilation of Mystery Guests was shown as a special round. Here McCoist also failed to recognise himself as a showjumper from a clip some years previous. As for Warne, when the opposing team incorrectly guessed Venus Williams as the sports star shown, the answer was obviously Serena Williams but Warne thought differently and thought it was Roger Federer despite the two having different skin tone and being of a different gender. Another embarrasing moment for a team captain happened in 2003, when during the Home or Away round where the captains had to guess an anagram. Frankie Dettori could not recongize his name

Quiz format

The rounds played include:
*Picture Board - numbered squares reveal sports person for contestant to identify
*Action Round - contestants are asked questions about a montage of sporting action
*What Happened Next? - sports footage is halted at optimum moment and teams are asked what occurred thereafter (often an answer of amusement)
*Observation Round - sports action is shown and contestants are asked questions about details of what they have just seen, e.g. "What colour hat was a certain person wearing?", "How many balls can you see in the following clip?". The footage for the latter question will be of many different events and all show balls, or whatever item has been asked
*Mystery Guest - teams have to identify a sports star in unfamiliar circumstances and with unconventional camera angles
*Home Or Away - contestants can answer a question on their own sport for one point ("home"), or a question on any sport for two points ("away"). It should be noted that Captains always receive away questions.
*Captain's Challenge - The captains have a contest in different feats
*One Minute Round - teams are asked nine questions in 60 seconds
*On The Buzzer - teams answer questions at quickfire pace (this was only introduced in later years - in the Vine and Coleman eras, the show would end with the remaining six Picture Board questions)


The "A Question of Sport" format has been applied to various other areas of knowledge. The following spin-off series were all made by the BBC:

*"A Question of News", presented by Richard Baker, 1972.
*"A Question of Entertainment", Tom O'Connor, 1988.
*"A Question of Pop", Jamie Theakston, 2000-1.
*"A Question of TV", Gaby Roslin, 2001.

Roslin also hosted a one-off special, "A Question of EastEnders", in 2000. Another one-off special, "A Question of Comedy" was to have been aired on March 16th, 2007 as a part of Comic Relief 2007, but after a scandal involving contestant Jade Goody it was replaced with a special edition of "Top Gear".

"A Question of Sport Relief" is a special version of the show usually presented by a guest presenter on Sport Relief night since 2002. The 2002,2004 & 2006 versions were hosted by Stephen Fry. 2008's version was hosted by Jimmy Carr after Fry had to pull out having broken his arm.

External links

*bbc.co.uk|id=questionofsport|title="A Question of Sport"
* [http://www.ukgameshows.com/index.php/A_Question_of_Sport "A Question of Sport"] at UKGameshows.com

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