NEXT time you're doing a pub quiz, if you see this team sign up it's probably best to quit while you're ahead.

Because these five Oxford Brookes University students won a record £75,000 on BBC2 quiz show Eggheads by defeating professional quizzers, who included former Mastermind and Brain of Britain winners.

The student team - known as Beer Today, Gone Tomorrow - are all second years at Brookes and only signed up for the show after a comfortable win in a quiz at The Standard pub, in London Road, Headington.

Team captain Dan Franzen, a 19-year-old business student, said: "It all started after we won that pub quiz. We thought we were pretty good and not long after that I saw Eggheads on TV.

"Still flying high from our pub victory, I went on to the programme's website, downloaded an application form and sent it off. That was in February and we didn't hear anything back for ages, so we'd almost forgotten about it."

But the team, which includes Craig Rouse, a 20-year-old computer science student, Charles Wilson, a 19-year-old software engineering student, Tom Talbot, a 21-year-old biology student and Qassim Elmegreisi, a 19-year-old business student, were then invited to an audition in May.

Mr Rouse, of East Field Close, Cowley, said: "I think they wanted to check us out and make sure we weren't too good, as the Eggheads are very rarely defeated."

The Eggheads programme is hosted by Dermot Murnaghan and sees TV quiz show legends, including Judith Keppel, winner of ITV's Who Wants to be a Millionaire?, and Chris Hughes, winner of Mastermind and former Brain of Britain, take on a new panel of challengers each episode.

Every time the Eggheads win, the prize money increases by £1,000. But when Beer Today, Gone Tomorrow went to the studio for filming in August, they were unaware the Eggheads had enjoyed 74 successive victories - so £75,000 was up for grabs if they won.

Mr Rouse said: "To be playing for that much was a huge surprise."

Mr Franzen said: "I had spent a bit of time thinking about the best strategy to take on the Eggheads.

"I'd even drawn up a spreadsheet and watched the show a lot beforehand, so we knew their strengths and weaknesses."

The team, who now have £15,000 each, usually play in two pub quizzes a week - at Brookes' students' union and at The Standard.

Mr Rouse added: "People will probably start recognising us soon and banning us from taking part."


AMONG the questions the team, pictured with fellow competitors, answered on the way to victory on television were: 1. Which of these European cities is the furthest south?

a. Lisbon b. Valletta c. Nicosia 2. Which of these is a plant in the cabbage family?

a. cress b. mustard c. vinegar 3. Which snooker player won his second world championship title in 1982?

4. What does the 'A' in DNA stand for?

Answers: 1, c; 2, b; 3, Alex Higgins; 4, acid.