Abu Dhabi: "It's easy to answer when you're not up there," murmured the audience as they enthusiastically shared in answering questions that contestants' struggled with at Thursday's Senior Gulf News Blockbusters.

Even though some contestants struggled in answering questions, the initial tension soon turned into chuckles and excitement from both contestants and the audience, as Quizmaster Stuart McClean kept the room at ease with his ongoing humour. "These questions are crackers aren't they? I know none of these!" commented McClean while reading out a question.

Veena Shenoy, a 53-year-old, General Practitioner from India working at New Medical Centre won the first adult single finals.

"If you loose all that is bothered is your ego, you won't be put in jail or killed, so why not try? At the end it feels great to win!" expressed the excited contestant, seconds after she was announced winner. Shenoy's hobby is to read books.

"I read almost anything and everything; especially fiction books. I am very bad with numbers though, I might even be dyslexic." While playing, Shenoy hesitated in picking out the correct numbers and turned to the audience for a choice.


Two gentlemen from Canada, who are also lifetime friends played against each other in the next round. The audience applauded both contestants during their fun-loving episode.

Fouad Marduki, 28, Excecutive Affairs Authority Analyst and Sami Khoreibi, 28, President and CEO at the Enviromena Power Systems, initially attended the competition to take part in the team competition, but decided to compete in the singles.

"You know how the competitive juices start flowing after not too long? Speed is the keyword and my machine defaulted. The competition is a great stiff but in great humour," said Marduki, who even though lost on the final singles, but was still in great spirit and ready to move onto the team competition.

The funniest comment throughout the event was when Marduki answered one of McClean's questions with: "What is a raven?" McClean's reaction got the room laughing hysterically - "He thinks he's on jeopardy!"

Khoreibi was the second finalist winner for the adult singles. "This is my first time to compete in a blockbusters competition; I just used to watch jeopardy on television! The name of the game is to enjoy yourself and take it easy, it's only a game! But now it's the real deal, I have to do it for Abu Dhabi, take it serious and try to win at the Dubai finals!"

Both friends took part in the same group team "Shammaa" comprised of four individuals. The team ended up winning the group finals.

Noam Franklin, Head of Internal Communications at Al Dar handpicked his team members. "I'm good at history, Sami's good with words [chuckle], Fouad is good at politics and Eric is good at science."

The team called themselves Shammaa after Shammaa Al Nuaimi, Corporate Communication Manager and a colleague at Al Dar. "I motivated them. I promised them that if they win, they get a free ride and a room at Burj Al Arab for free!" explained Al Nuaimi.