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Stephen Balment

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Stephen Balment

Stephen Balment was the Series 12 champion, as well as a participant in Championship of Champions III and the Supreme Championship.

A computer programmer from Leicester, he made his debut on 14 April 1987, beating Keith Albans 83 – 45, setting a record score that would remain unequalled for nine years and ultimately unbeaten following Countdown changing formats to the 15 round game. The show would go on to be repeated on more than one occasion over the years. Balment won two more heats before eventually succumbing to Mike Tobias, but would return for the quarter-finals as #4 seed. There, he defeated Nigel Aspden and Jon Marsh on his way to the final against Janet McRae, and saw off McRae's challenge to emerge the 81 – 66 winner and the champion of the twelfth series of Countdown.

Balment returned the following series for Championship of Champions III, but was beaten by Darryl Francis in the first round.

He returned one last time for the Supreme Championship in 1996, beating Gino Corr in the first round but losing to Joyce Cansfield in the second.

Balment is also an active player on the British Scrabble circuit, where he is known as the 'Yo-Yo' because of his wildly fluctuating rating.

Preceded by
John Clarke
Series winner
Series 12
Followed by
Hilary Hopper


# Date Type Contestant 1 Score Contestant 2 Guest Lex Max
546 14/04/1987 P Stephen Balment 83 – 45 Keith Albans Gyles Brandreth Catherine Clarke 85
547 15/04/1987 P Stephen Balment 53 – 46 Jez Gill Gyles Brandreth Catherine Clarke 68
548 16/04/1987 P Stephen Balment 53 – 45 Helen Pitt Gyles Brandreth Catherine Clarke 75
549 17/04/1987 P Stephen Balment 43 – 59 Mike Tobias Anne Robinson Della Thompson 71
591 16/06/1987 QF Stephen Balment 73* – 63 Nigel Aspden Patrick Mower Julia Swannell 95
592 17/06/1987 SF Stephen Balment 51 – 30 Jon Marsh Patrick Mower Julia Swannell 70
594 19/06/1987 GF Stephen Balment 81 – 66 Janet McRae Diane Solomon,
Patrick Mower
Julia Swannell 128
596 23/06/1987 CQF Darryl Francis 46 – 28 Stephen Balment Sally James Della Thompson 73
M18 31/07/1989–4/08/1989 M David Poulter 57 – 105 Stephen Balment none Catherine Clarke ??
M70 30/07/1990–3/08/1990 M Michael Wylie 118 – 44 Stephen Balment none Simon Mason 134
1875 6/11/1996 dQF Stephen Balment 52 – 44 Gino Corr Geoffrey Durham Susie Dent 72
1878 11/11/1996 dSF Stephen Balment 48 – 57 Joyce Cansfield Barry Cryer Susie Dent 71
* includes 10 points from a tie-break conundrum
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