University challenge

Posted on CSP website 8 October 2011

Student physio Lee Cooper captained a University of Nottingham team to victory in this week’s University Challenge on BBC2.

Mr Cooper, who celebrates his 53rd birthday at the end of October, is happy to admit that his age may have given him the edge over younger rivals.

lee cooperTeam captain Lee Cooper

‘In truth, you need to be lucky on the day with questions,’ he said.

‘But if there happened to be a question about the three-day week in the 1970s, for example, then I would have an advantage because I was alive then.

‘Then again, I wasn’t around for the Battle of Hastings,’ he quips.

Soldier and cancer survivor

A keen sportsman in his youth, Mr Cooper continues to enjoy an active life and has completed two half-marathons this year.

A former soldier who rose to the rank of major before retiring from the services, he survived a battle with tongue and throat cancer in 2001.

Now in his third and final year at university, Mr Cooper hopes to find a job in the Nottingham area after graduation.

He still has to carry out placements in neurological and respiratory physio, and remains open-minded about which specialism he prefers.

He describes University Challenge host Jeremy Paxman as ‘a bit of a card’ and says his mother and daughter were ‘thrilled to bits’ to watch his performance in the studi