Game show eyes all on Whitby psychiatrist in tonight’s Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions

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Published February 29, 2024 at 2:32 pm

Juveria Zaheer

Tonight’s the night for Whitby’s Juveria Zaheer, who will be testing her trivia knowledge in the opening round of popular game show Jeopardy!’s Tournament of Champions.

Zaheer, a psychiatrist and researcher with CAMH and the University of Toronto who won the Wildcard tournament Feb. 2 to book her ticket to the championship, appears set to go, if her post of social media Thursday morning is any indication.

“Who’s ready? So excited to share the stage with three of my favourite people,” enthused, citing opponents Luigi de Guzman, a Virginia attorney with five wins and $140,700 in his pocket, and Kevin Belle, a Maryland trail planner and part-time drag queen, and Jeopardy host Ken Jennings.

“See who prevails tonight in the Jeopardy tournament of champions quarterfinal. Spoiler alert – it’s Ken!”

Zaheer, a mother of two daughters who has been called a “comeback contest sensation” by Jeopardy executives and a “stone cold trivia assassin” by her fans, has been a sensation since losing her first time on the show last May to eight-time winner Hannah Wilson (who is also competing in the tournament).

Zaheer came back with a record-breaking haul in a Second Chance tournament – she earned $52,100 in just one match, the first Canadian to do so – and then won the Wildcard tournament to qualify for the championship.

Her fans are certainly ready:

  • JUVERIA NIGHT! Can’t wait. Pulling hard for you & hoping for an entire board of opera questions – Bobbi
  • Rooting for you, Juveria! – Rob
  • I am not—nor do I think I ever will be—emotionally ready for this episode Gregory
  • Wishing you all the best tonight – Sheila
  • Bring it Juveria! Eli
  • You have made so many people, so proud! – Michael
  • I hope you win tonight! Good Luck – fingers crossed! – Nancy

No pressure, but Zaheer is considered one of the favourites for the tournament, along with top seed Troy Meyer, a music executive and online trivia whiz with six wins, $214,802; second seed Ray Lalonde, a Toronto television set designer with 13 wins and $386,200; and Ben Chan, a philosophy professor with nine wins – all in runaways – and $252,200.

The quarter-finals began this week and winners so far include Texan Jared Watson ($32,200), who shocked tournament favourite former pro poker player Chris Pannullo, a former pro poker player with 21 wins and nearly $750,000 to his credit; and two Washington contestants: David Sibley (who knocked out Wilson by just $2) with $26,401; and Yogesh Raut, who earned $24,799.

The tournament runs to the week of March 16-20 with the grand champion taking home $250,000. Second and third-place finishers will get $100,000 and $50,000, respectively.

Juveria Zaheer of Whitby with Jeopardy host Ken Jennings

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