University Challenge contestant Sophie Rudd receives outpouring of support after gendered Twitter trolling

'Brains and beauty will go far. Ignore the ignorance of the uneducated few'

Charlie Chalkley
Tuesday 26 July 2016 14:34
University Challenge contestant Sophie Rudd receives outpouring of support

Fans of popular TV quiz show University Challenge, including a few famous faces, have rushed to defend a contestant from Warwick University after Monday’s episode.

Sophie Rudd, who is studying for a masters in computer science, demonstrated her considerable knowledge throughout Warwick’s heat with Liverpool on the BBC Two show, but some Twitter users, instead, demonstrated narrow­-mindedness, trolling the contestant over her gender.

In response to the trolling, even more Twitter users wrote messages supporting the contestant. One viewer wrote: “Sophie Rudd­ young, clever, dynamic, clever, beautiful, clever, happy, clever. Trans, really? Who cares, she’s fab!”

Another said: “Rudd on the Warwick team has brains, beauty and will go far. Ignore the ignorance of the uneducated few.”

Richard Osman, co­-host of BBC One’s quiz show Pointless, weighed in saying: “I am a very big fan of this Warwick team. I think they might be my new favourites.” Multiple users also said their only issue was that she wasn’t Warwick’s team captain.

The BBC declined to comment.

University Challenge is no stranger when it comes to getting Twitter talking on Monday nights. Last year saw perhaps some of the most memorable contestants with Kamil Shah, of King’s College at Cambridge, getting the ball rolling when he almost broke the site after breaking away from the style norm to appear on the show wearing a leather vest and chunky, gold chain.

Oscar Powell, geological sciences student from Peterhouse at Cambridge, also reached legendary status after pulling some of the strangest, yet most entertaining, facial expressions when thrown some tricky questions by host Jeremy Paxman. Even his own teammates struggled to keep straight faces when he became a bit too enthusiastic when trying to guess a song during the music round.

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