University Challenge 2017 final: Eric Monkman’s Wolfson Cambridge team takes on Balliol Oxford

Ben Travis
Fan favourite: Eric Monkman is heading up the University Challenge final: BBC

It’s the moment that University Challenge fans everywhere – and there are a lot of them – have been waiting for.

The 2017 series is coming to a close with a heated Oxbridge battle.

The final is pitting Wolfson College, Cambridge against Balliol College, Oxford – and only one will emerge the winner.

But while audiences might be rooting for one team over the other, it’s one particular contestant who’ll be getting the most attention.

Throughout the series, viewers have been sharing their admiration for Eric Monkman on Twitter – the ‘intense’ Wolfson student who has taken the role of team captain.

​Monkman, who hails from Oakville, Canada is studying for an MA in Economics and has become well-loved for his animated reactions to questions, and jaw-locked facial expression.

The hype intensified to the point where the 29 year-old contestant spoke out about the supposed ‘Monkmania’.

“I don’t really understand it. Maybe it’s because I don’t play as if I’m on television,” he said.

“I certainly don’t think of myself as any object of desire. I assume people are being ironic, not serious. I think they’re just trying to be funny.”

While the Balliol College team might not have a ‘celebrity’ on their side, they are a force to be reckoned with – racking up a huge 215 points in the brutally difficult semi-finals against Edinburgh.

Asking the questions with his usual sharpness will be Jeremy Paxman.

Tune in to find out whether Oxford or Cambridge can nab the top spot – although there’s a strong chance you’ll mainly be watching for a certain pair of devastating eyebrows.

BBC Two, 8pm

By using Yahoo you agree that Yahoo and partners may use Cookies for personalisation and other purposes