Sunday 4 December 2016

University Challenge fans leap to defence of gender abuse contestant

Published 26/07/2016 | 13:06

University Challenge host Jeremy Paxman was in the chair as Sophie Rudd led the University of Warwick's victory charge
University Challenge host Jeremy Paxman was in the chair as Sophie Rudd led the University of Warwick's victory charge

Fans of University Challenge have defended a contestant after she was trolled on Twitter over her gender.

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Sophie Rudd appeared on the BBC Two quiz show as a member of the University of Warwick team during Monday's episode.

The computer science master's degree student became the subject of negative tweets posted on the social networking site as the Jeremy Paxman-fronted programme aired.

But the long-running show's viewers took to Twitter to defend Rudd.

Hailed as "one of the brightest stars of this year's University Challenge" by one fan, she was also called a "genius" for helping lead her team to victory by another.

One viewer wrote: "Notice University Challenge trending and think "wow" then see it's simply because mocking and questioning of someone's gender."

Another added: "Does it really matter what gender a contestant on a TV show is? Chances are she's brighter than you."

Rudd and her fellow contestants Sophie Hobbs, Thomas Van and captain Giles Hutchings were the winners of the episode against students from the University of Liverpool.

The BBC declined to comment.

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