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Richard Ayoade

From Countdown
Ayoade as Maurice Moss in The IT Crowd, playing Countdown.

Richard Ayoade was a contestant on 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown. He is an actor, writer and stand-up comedian amongst other talents.

In his most famous role as Maurice Moss on The IT Crowd, Ayoade's character "appeared" on Countdown in 2010. In the episode, Moss famously declares the nine letters TNETENNBA which already "spells" out a word, and breaks many records. Moss is later invited to a secret club called 8+ and forced to play Street Countdown against a jealous former champion, "Negative One", declaring a 16 (OVERNUMEROUSNESS) compared to Negative One's 12, ENORMOUSNESS. The episode featured cameo appearances from Jeff Stelling, Rachel Riley, and Gyles Brandreth.

He eventually made his debut appearance six years later on an actual episode on 22 October 2016 in 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown Series 11, Episode 5. For his sole apperances in 2016 and 2017, he scored three and five respectively. Remarkably the year after, in 2018, he improved dramatically, scoring perfectly in a numbers round and obtained a maximum in a letters round and maintained his performance in 2019, though he could have broken his own record had he not discarded DOGNAP (He would eventually do so almost a year later in 2020).

He is only the second player in history to have two drawn matches, after Lew Schwarz. The advent of tie-break conundrums in normal Countdown means this is unlikely to ever be beaten.


# Date Type Contestant 1 Score Contestant 2 Presenters Guest Lex Max
Cats70 22/10/2016 S Richard Ayoade
& Rob Beckett
3 – 48 Jon Richardson
& Claudia Winkleman
Jimmy Carr Rachel Riley Adam Riches Susie Dent 70
Cats86 6/07/2017 S Stephen Mangan
& Sean Lock
55 – 5 Richard Ayoade
& Katherine Ryan
Jimmy Carr Rachel Riley Bill Bailey Susie Dent 71
Cats102 17/08/2018 S Richard Ayoade
& Sean Lock
42 – 43 Jon Richardson
& Jessica Knappett
Jimmy Carr Rachel Riley Alex Horne &
the Horne Section
Susie Dent 74
Cats108 25/01/2019 S Joe Wilkinson
& Sean Lock
22 – 35 Richard Ayoade
& Aisling Bea
Jimmy Carr Rachel Riley Tom Allen Susie Dent 78
Cats122 23/01/2020 S Richard Ayoade
& Sean Lock
44* – 44 Jon Richardson
& Katherine Ryan
Jimmy Carr Rachel Riley David O'Doherty Susie Dent 87
Cats128 14/08/2020 S Daisy May Cooper
& Sean Lock
22 – 27 Richard Ayoade
& Ivo Graham
Jimmy Carr Rachel Riley Adam Buxton Susie Dent 71
Cats133 4/02/2021 S Richard Ayoade
& Sean Lock
42 – 52 Jon Richardson
& Sara Pascoe
Jimmy Carr Rachel Riley Nick Helm Susie Dent 69
Cats143 29/07/2022 S Joe Wilkinson
& Richard Ayoade
28 – 28 Jon Richardson
& Lucy Beaumont
Jimmy Carr Rachel Riley Finlay Christie Susie Dent 75
Cats146 19/08/2022 S Sara Pascoe
& Richard Ayoade
11 – 35 Jon Richardson
& Chris McCausland
Jimmy Carr Rachel Riley Morgana Robinson Susie Dent 60
* Includes 5 points from a bonus game.

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