Friday 12 November 2021 (Series 84, Preliminary 99)

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Rhys Benjamin
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Friday 12 November 2021 (Series 84, Preliminary 99)

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Annedown XCVIII and it's Friday and I can't find my blue tie anywhere. I need it. Like, tonight. Argh!

Countdown recap for Friday 12 November 2021.

On this day in 1840, Rodin was born: the sculpture of his thinking pose that inspired Bruce Forsyth.

C1: Champion Graham Grant (2 wins, 198 points.)
C2: Challenger Mark Lay. From Lancashire. Data and insight analyst at the University of Manchester. "Predicting the future", apparently. So a clairvoyant. I should start saying that. "I'm a data analyst; I predict the future."
DC: Susie Dent and Alastair Campbell.
RR: Rachel Riley.
OT: Other words or solutions.

R01: P C S A M S O U L
R02: E I U T G S R A W
R03: 75, 10, 5, 7, 6, 8. Target: 392.
TTT: BADATSEA - "Take a guitar out for a romantic meal, it's all stored here."
R04: I E A D S P S E Y
R05: E U A R S D S T A
R06: 100, 25, 7, 2, 5, 9. Target: 245.
R07: D T C M E U E S I
R08: B O R U E N P L E
R09: 5, 4, 1, 9, 10, 8. Target: 856.
TTT: CLAYSOIL - "He rarely drinks at all, just sometimes when out."
R10: T N I A R G O R A
R11: L R K N E E O C G
R12: T A F P T I O I N
R13: D R E U S D R E N
R14: 75, 25, 1, 5, 4, 9. Target: 385.
R15: N E T T O F R O G (conundrum)


And now a brief interlude before our main feature:

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Enjoy the show.

Round 1: P C S A M S O U L

Graham: SCAMPS (6) (not written down)
Mark: COMPASS (7)
DC: CUPOLAS (7)
OT: COPULAS (7) MUCOSAL (7) SCOPULA (7) SPOUSAL (7)
Score: 0–7 (max 7, jos 7)
Darren-o-meter: 0/1 (0%)

Mark takes an early lead as Graham is only on six.

Round 2: E I U T G S R A W

Graham: GUITARS (7) (not written down)
Mark: WAGERS (6)
DC: WAITERS (7) EARWIGS (7) GUTSIER (7) WARIEST (7)
OT: AGISTER (7) GAITERS (7) GUSTIER (7) STAGIER (7) TRIAGES (7)
Score: 7–7 (max 14, jos 14)
Darren-o-meter: 0/2 (0%)

Graham levels the tie with Mark the only one to miss a seven.

Round 3: 75, 10, 5, 7, 6, 8. Target: 392.

Graham: 392. 75 × 5 + 10 + 7 (10)
Mark: 392. 75 × 5 + 10 + 7 (10)
Score: 17–17 (max 24, jos 24)

thank u, next

Teatime teaser: BADATSEA -> DATABASE

Round 4: I E A D S P S E Y

Graham: SPAYED (6)
Mark: SPEEDY (6)
DC: DESPISE (7) DISEASE (7) SEASIDE (7) seasidey
OT: APSIDES (7) DEPAYSE (7) ESSAYED (7) PEASIES (7) PEDESIS (7) PESADES (7)
Score: 23–23 (max 31, jos 31)
Darren-o-meter: 0/3 (0%)

Sixes for the two contestants with lots of sevens available, with Alastair falling foul of the Graeme Cole rule (word + Y = word).

Round 5: E U A R S D S T A

Graham: STARED (6)
Mark: ASSURED (7)
DC: DUSTERS (7)
OT: ASSARTED (8)
Score: 23–30 (max 39, jos 38)
Darren-o-meter: 1/4 (25%)

No max for DC today as ASSARTED goes begging, whilst Mark takes the lead with his ASSURED offering.

Round 6: 100, 25, 7, 2, 5, 9. Target: 245.

Graham: 245. (100 + 25) × 2 − 5 (10)
Mark: 245. (100 + 9) × 2 + 25 + 7 − 5 (10)
Score: 33–40 (max 49, jos 48)

Ariana.

Alastair and Anne reminisce about their days working at The Daily Mirror, and how they got Robert Maxwell to sponsor the Mandela tribute concert... where Robert Maxwell offered to, er, "help" with his negotiations, saying that negotiations were about patience. Patience. TO NELSON MANDELA. He also didn't let Mandela sign copies of his autobiographies, other than one woman at Number 10 called Monica (during the Bill Clinton scandal) where Mandela replied "not THAT Monica, I hope!". Fascinating anecdote given yesterday's news about FW De Klerk.

Round 7: D T C M E U E S I

Graham: CUTIES (6) (not written down)
Mark: DEMIST (6)
DC: MISCUED (7) SIDECUT (7)
OT: DECIMETS (8)
Score: 39–46 (max 57, jos 55)
Darren-o-meter: 2/5 (40%)

That seven-point gap stays as it is with another point dropped to the computer on DC's total.

Mark talks about his education at what is now Bolton University.

Round 8: B O R U E N P L E

Graham: PRUNE (5) (not written down)
Mark: ROUBLE (6)
DC: UNROBE (6) PLEURON (7) (from RR)
OT: PRENOBLE (8)
Score: 39–52 (max 65, jos 62)
Darren-o-meter: 3/6 (50%)

Lovely spot from Rachel, but once again it's beaten by the computer - as Mark extends his lead.

Round 9: 5, 4, 1, 9, 10, 8. Target: 856.

Graham: 854. (not written down)
Mark: 855. (not written down) ((8 + 1) × 9 + 4) × 10 + 5​ (7)
RR: 856. (after ads) ((9 + 8) × 5 + 1) × 10 − 4​ (10)
Score: 39–59 (max 75, jos 73)

Graham and Mark both stare into the middle distance during the clock and Mark extends his lead with a crucial seven points - whilst Rachel needs the ads to work it out.

Teatime teaser: CLAYSOIL -> SOCIALLY

Round 10: T N I A R G O R A

Graham: ROARING (7) (not written down)
Mark: TARRAGON (8) (try)
DC: ARROGANT (8)
OT: RANGIORA (8)
Score: 39–67 (max 83, jos 80)
Darren-o-meter: 3/7 (43%)

Mark extends his lead again, seeing a great eight.

Round 11: L R K N E E O C G

Graham: clonker (risky, not written down)
Mark: CONKER (6)
DC: glocken GROCKLE (7)
OT: ERELONG (7) GENLOCK (7) KEROGEN (7) NOCKERL (7)
Score: 39–73 (max 90, jos 87)
Darren-o-meter: 3/8 (38%)

GROCKLE a great find from Susie, whilst Graham gets mixed up with CLUNKER and gives Mark another 6 points.

OOW Susie goes off piste and plays mythbusters about some of the things Anne and Alastair have mentioned this week: our old favourite, IZE/ISE; "I was sat", which has been around since 1711; "x and myself", which isn't correct.

Round 12: T A F P T I O I N

Graham: PAINT (5) (not written down)
Mark: PATIO (5)
DC: FINITO (6) TINPOT (6)
OT: NOTITIA (7)
Score: 44–78 (max 97, jos 93)
Darren-o-meter: 4/9 (44%)

Fives for both contestants and another point dropped to the computer. With 34 points in it, Graham is still just about in the game.

Round 13: D R E U S D R E N

Graham: RENDERS (7) (not written down)
Mark: SUNDERED (8)
DC: RUDDERS (7)
OT: ENDURERS (8) SUNDERER (8)
Score: 44–86 (max 105, jos 101)
Darren-o-meter: 4/10 (40%)

And Mark wraps up the game with a brilliant eight which has everyone in the studio well beaten.

Round 14: 75, 25, 1, 5, 4, 9. Target: 385.

Graham: 385. 5 × 75 + 9 + 1 (10)
Mark: 385. 5 × 75 + 9 + 1 (10)
Score: 54–96 (max 115, jos 111)

Triple Ariana bonus numberwang!

Can Mark get a ton?

Round 15: N E T T O F R O G

Mark buzzes on 1.25 seconds to say FORGOTTEN which is correct.
Final Score: 54–106 (max 125, jos 121)

Oh boy, you bet he can. He looks like a great find for the show, with a raw score of 89.6% - that's well up there with some of the greats - and he still has enough time to qualify for the finals.

Join us again for more Countdown. Goodbye.


Further summaries are at:
http://cdb.apterous.org/series.php?series=84
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