Muscat: The 2013 edition of the popular Times of Oman Inter School Quiz Contest is back. The grand finale of the contest is slated at the City Amphitheatre on Thursday, April 25.
Due to popular demand, Times of Oman has decided to hold the inter-school quiz contest in two categories: Junior (grade 8 and below) and senior (grade 9 to 13). Accordingly, this year, there will be two sets of prelims, mega-prelims and finals for the two categories.
Commenting on the decision, Aziz Baker, advertisement manager, said, "After a gap of few years, we re-launched the interschool quiz last year. We received tremendous response from the participants. During last year's quizzing process, we received many requests from parents, teachers and students to include a dedicated segment for the lower age groups. Considering the interest in quizzing in Oman, quizmaster Giri 'Pickbrain' Balasubramaniam pointed out that it was important to have an exclusive quiz for grades eight and below. So here we are with an exciting version of the inter-school quiz."
Explaining the importance of categorisation, Giri stated, "The idea was to give younger kids a new platform that would help them learn and nurture their passion for quizzing. If they compete with the seniors, the odd team may qualify, but in this case, many more will qualify up to the mega-prelims, and that is a major achievement. In every major sport, you find juniors are the key to producing future talent. So, Oman will have a clear triple-layered quizzing fraternity from now: Junior, senior and open. In fact, I said a year ago that the school quiz is their Wimbledon. In that context, it's time for the junior Wimbledon."
The quiz is open to a two-member team from all the schools, and each school can send unlimited number of teams.
The tentative dates for stage one of the quiz, which is the prelims, are April 16–18, 20, and 21. The prelims will be held in various schools of Oman. The two mega- prelims will be held on April 23.
Talking about the logistics involved in conducting a quiz of this scale, Giri noted, "Logistics is important for any quiz, given the scale and the minute detailing that must be considered. For a company like ours, which handles quizzes across 64 cities in India, logistics is part of our lives for any event that we host. Given that Oman is quite organised and its systems are robust, logistics should not be an issue since we are well prepared."
The quizmaster is not worried about conducting the two finals on stage on April 25. "In fact, there will be two parallel tracks throughout the quiz, from the qualifiers through to the mega-prelims and the finals. Only then would we be doing justice to the little ones. If I fast forward to April 25, I would consider it a wonderful sight to see kids, possibly from grades six to eight, seated on the stage at the amphitheatre. I wonder if any of them, in their lives, have ever faced an audience of 6,000-plus people," he smiled.
So parents, teachers, and students, it is time to get set for the Times of Oman Inter School