Manna International have finally laid hands on the Junior Sharks trophy, the most important item conspicuously missing in their cabinet.
Twenty-four (24) brilliant schools were vying to be crowned the champions of Junior Sharks Season Four.
A trophy, scholarship packages, cash prizes and the bragging rights as the best school in mental faculties were up for the taking.
After twenty-three(23) action-packed contests, the Breman, Kumasi-based school staved off all challenges to emerge the best among the rest.
Placing their consistency in the last three seasons of Junior Sharks in apposition, Manna’s achievement has been long time coming,
In Junior Sharks Four, the three-time 2nd runners-up have been without a shred of doubt the most impressive team.
They navigated, surmounted and circumvented difficult terrains, mazes and labyrinths on the road to ultimate glory.
Having handled three schools with tact and precision prior, only International Community School(ICS) stood in the way of the victory crown.
Road to the grand finale
Manna International, with a respectable third-placed finish of Junior Sharks Season 3, enjoyed a seeded slot for Season 4.
By this arrangement, they had their first taste of action at the Round of 16 of Junior Sharks Season 4.
This is how Manna Int. approached their opponents: they effortlessly beat Bambiland, tactfully nullified DPS and bravely defeated Kotoka JHS.
First timers, ICS, also overcame Ave Afiendiyiba, The Lord’s Star Int., Services JHS and Angels’ Ridge to earn a grand finale berth with Manna.
On a head-to-head basis, Manna Int.’s record towered above ICS’ going into the grand finale.
But with the level of twists and turns Junior Sharks Season Four contests have churned out, the grand finale was anybody’s.
Manna Int. versus ICS hence piqued the appetite of an enthusiastic audience and viewers as one of the most anticipated.
The atmosphere on the D-day of Junior Sharks 4 grand finale was understandably tensed.
Quiz master Noble Annan, however, did his best to smother the butterflies in the stomachs of contestants.
Manna International School received the nod to start the first Round of Junior Sharks Season Four grand finale.
Kwadwo, Ivy, Vincent and Natalie crossed the T’s and dotted the I’s, but all amounted to very little as they ended the Round with a disappointing twenty(20) points.
One will not stoke any disputation if ICS is classified as poor starters in Junior Sharks Season Four.
The school from East Legon, Accra, have not earned more than thirty(30) points in Round One of any contest in Junior Sharks Season Four.
Even though they applied themselves assiduously to their questions in this Round 1 of the grand finale contest, they could only bag same twenty(20) points as Manna International.
A thunderous applause greeted the entry of Kusi John into the contest to replace Natalie for Manna Int.
This round, also known as the ‘R-Cubed’ Round started with ICS.
There was no deviation from what ICS is most adept at, which is the Reading and Writing segment.
They missed only two tricky questions.
The Arithmetic segment as always has been the sinking sand for most schools in Junior Sharks Season Four.
Both schools were unable to answer first question of the Arithmetic segment.
When ICS hit their next question right, John Kusi, who needs no further accolades responded appropriately.
After that, both schools were not so lucky with the rest of the questions.
At the end of the round, ICS had done just enough in the Reading and Writing segment.
They ended with a score of forty-five(45) while Manna International trailed with fifteen (15) points.
ICS also introduced super-sub, Obrempon Aseda Osefo, to help them consolidate the gains made so far.
Obrempon missed the first question of the Round as Manna Int. graciously picked up the question for ten(10) points.
Manna International, buoyed by John and Kwadwo’s synergy were clearly in the ascendancy in this STEM Round.
Scores at the end of the Round showed Manna Int. leading the contest for the first time with fifty-five(55) commanding points.
ICS suffered a confidence eroding and morale deflating zero(0).
With one more round to go, the last round of Junior Sharks Season 4 grand finale served a gentle reminder that it is not over until it is over.
Contestants highly competent in the fields of English, Math, Science and General Knowledge answered the call to action.
Vincent and Jordan represented Manna International and ICS respectively in English.
Vincent was fastest to spell the word “Lubricant”.
He missed narrowly the second question when he erroneously inserted the missing letters for “Melancholic” into “Melancholy”.
Jordan was reduced to a mere spectator.
Math ‘Sharks’ Kusi John and Alexis for Manna International and ICS respectively stepped forward.
The standing ovation that welcomed John Kusi once again was indicative of the high esteem accorded him by fans of Manna International.
As Alexis was requesting for a repeat of the first question, John’s buzzer had gone aeons before.
And his answer of- “52 years” was correct. Hail him! Hail him! Hail him!
Second question was missed by both contestants, but that was to be largely inconsequential.
Young Scientists were Kwadwo and Obrempon for Manna International and ICS respectively.
Kwadwo’s attempt to outsmart and snatch ten(10) points from Obrempon was an exercise in futility.
Obrempon patiently waited and buzzed with the right answer.
The second question was a reversal of what occurred with respect to the first question.
This time, Obrempon, the culprit who buzzed halfway into reading of the question but was clueless with an answer.
Obrempon disqualified from any attempt at providing an answer, Kwadwo had all the chance in the world to finish off majestically.
But he also rushed and buzzed when all possible answers had not been fully read and missed the answer.
General Knowledge experts: Ivy Baidoo and Anne-Marie for Manna and ICS respectively took over the baton.
Ivy Baidoo could not resist the picture of Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka, as she swiftly identified the Nigerian novelist and author to hit ten(10) points.
Minister of Education, Yaw Osei-Adutwum was spotted rightly again by Ivy Baidoo to draw the curtains down.
Round 4 scores of Junior Sharks 4 grand finale were as follows: Manna Int.- forty(40) points, ICS-ten(10) points.
Manna International were runaway winners with one hundred and thirty(130) points as ICS managed seventy-five(75) points.
Congratulations to Manna International!
Individual awards and honours
Stand-out contestants were honoured for the panache displayed in Junior Sharks Season Four.
Unsurprisingly, Manna International swept as many as four(4) of the individual awards on the day.
Ivy Baidoo( Manna Int.) was adjudged Best in Social Literacy.
Kwadwo Boampong( Manna Int.) won Best in Scientific Literacy.
Math genius, Kusi John(Manna Int.), deservedly won Best in Numeracy.
The overall Best Student – The Most Valuable Participant(MVP) of Junior Sharks 4 went to ‘little Einstein’, John Kusi.
Special award for leadership and showmanship went to Jordan(ICS).
Abor Joseph(Angels’ Ridge) and Obrempon(ICS) were also honoured for their admirable aptitude.
Anne-Marie Dzasa(ICS) triumphed over all as the Best Female Student.
Most Promising Student is awarded to a contestant who did not reach the grand finale but showed exemplary skills in competencies across board.
It was Abubakar from Kotoka JHS who took home this award.
All awardees got a special medal, certificate and beautiful hampers from proud sponsor, Coca Cola Co. Ltd, producers of Schweppes.
Cash prizes and mementos
For coming in 4th place, Angels’ Ridge received a cash prize of Ghc1,000.00, bronze medals, and hampers from Kellogg’s, Indomie, and Coca Cola.
Second runner-up and two-time quarterfinalists, Kotoka JHS, went home with Ghc2, 000.00, bronze medals and hampers from Kellogg’s, Indomie, and Coca Cola.
As first runner-up, ICS earned silver medals and took home Ghc3,000.00, hampers and souvenirs from Kellogg’s, Indomie, and Coca Cola.
Manna Int., winners of the most informative and knowledge enriching quiz competition in Ghana were adorned with gold medals.
As winners of the fourth edition of Junior Sharks, they took home a cash prize of Ghc6,000.00, hampers and souvenirs from Kellogg’s, Indomie, and Coca Cola.
The best news that came out of being crowned Junior Sharks champions is that two students of Manna International will have the opportunity to represent Ghana at the International Junior Science Olympiad.
This academic odyssey that started on April 9, 2022, and ended on July 1, 2022, is endorsed by the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Thank you! our proud sponsors
#JuniorSharks was made possible by kind headline sponsorship of Kellogg’s, with support from Vivo Energy, Indomie, Schweppes and Chopbox.
Academic partners: Academic City College, Family Health Medical School, Lewis University, Ashesi University and University of the Free State.