Truly great wrong answers

Welcome again to the Wednesday Elm Tree Quiz. All quizzes are in a sense made-up, doubly so this week’s quiz which has a fictional theme.

It also sees the start of our new Book of the Moment, The Crow Trap by Anne Cleeves. Don’t worry if you haven’t read it yet for this week’s question is a relatively gentle starter. However, please note that as the book doesn’t follow a linear narrative, neither necessarily will the questions. So no complaints please if a question referring to chapter 5 requires knowledge of chapter 27 to make sense!

There is a long and imaginative tradition of truly great wrong answers to quiz questions from the answers “Schubert” and “Beethoven” respectively to “Who wrote Handel’s Water Music?” and more recently “JR Ewing” to the question “Whom did Lee Harvey Oswald shoot in Dallas?”

You may recall that last week I asked the question “Who won the world table tennis title in 1929?” When I added the rider that “You have heard of him even if you know absolutely nothing about table tennis” I was trying to be helpful, but may have introduced some misdirection. I must confess, however, that I was not expecting the answer “Adolf Hitler”. It is both manifestly wrong yet also intriguing at one and the same time. We all know the key facts: that Hitler was keen on Beer Hall putsches, global dominion and genocide, a bit of painting and vegetarian dining. Was it possible that his prowess at table tennis had been overlooked? Suffice to say that extensive research (aka the interweb) has to date revealed no such talent or achievement. Good news, I am pleased to announce, for English tennis star Fred Perry, whose 1929 table tennis title remains unchallenged.

All the best