CJC finish top in dramatic and emotional The Big Quiz; ACJC and HCI finish second

Despite being at the bottom after the first two segments, CJC's strategising paid off, giving it the win.
Despite being at the bottom after the first two segments, CJC's strategising paid off, giving it the win.PHOTO: MATTHIAS HO FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

SINGAPORE - In the most emotional round of The Big Quiz to date, the strategy of "Yolo" (You Only Live Once) played out.

Anglo-Chinese Junior College (ACJC) decided to go big or go home, using its "double your points" card to propel it from 60 to 120 points to come in second on Wednesday (April 27).

Had the team answered wrongly, it would have lost all 60 of its points instead.

The Hwa Chong Institution (HCI) team survived three "sabo king" cards, which forced it to answer questions deflected by its opponents to become joint first runner-up with ACJC. Twice, Jonathan Chua, 18, from HCI knelt down after answering questions, in the fervent hope that he had answered correctly.

Catholic Junior College (CJC) came in first while National Junior College (NJC) wound up last.

CJC's Jose Tan, 16, said: "We were very disappointed during the first two rounds because we made many silly errors that caused us to trail the other teams."

CJC gave the answer "Xin Hua Primary School" when asked where the nomination centre for the Bukit Batok by-election was located, instead of the correct


answer, "Keming Primary School".

Despite being at the bottom after the first two segments, CJC's strategising paid off, giving it the win.

The CJC team comprising Tan Shi Yen, 18; Andi Chun, 16; and Jose Tan were chosen as participants for this round of The Big Quiz through an internal "Inter-class Mock Big Quiz", involving 25 teams from their school. The trio won $600 in vouchers.

At the third of this year's five quiz rounds, jointly organised by The Straits Times and the Ministry of Education, with presenting sponsor Singapore Press Holdings Foundation, teams showed that they could tackle many of the difficult questions.

Ahead of the game, students and teachers heard from Mr Ignatius Low, this paper's deputy editor, who spoke on the topic of press freedom and independence of the media.

Mr Low presented his opinions and observations on a spectrum of press practices around the world, offering his views on whether there could truly be "a free press", despite media companies being owned by entities which served their own agendas.

He also addressed the Singapore model, with an overview of the social climate and commercial considerations that shaped the way journalists here did their jobs.

During the question-and-answer segment, ACJC's Nadya Goh, 17, asked "whether it is better to practise censorship or allow full press freedom".

Mr Low said: "Unfortunately, when there is no regulation at all, especially on the Internet, people with ill intentions will flourish... Over the past 10 years, many countries, including the United States and Britain, have re-evaluated the value of 'freedom' in the light of terrorism, which is very real... It is something that has changed the balance of the debate."

The next two rounds are on May 18 at River Valley High School; and July 20 at Raffles Institution.

For more information, see www.straitstimes.com/tags/the-big-quiz