That was the David Cameron I wanted to see. Passionate, full of conviction, positive, more combative. It wasn't a slam dunk victory, but it was never going to be. But it was a clearcut victory - more so than last week. It was his best performance of the three, whereas I felt that Brown and Clegg put in their weakest performances of the three, although I am not diminishing Clegg's appeal. His was still a comparatively good performance, but I thought he was in danger of overgoing the "two old parties" line in the first twenty minutes. He became irritating. Well, I found it irritating, at least. On two questions he floundered badly - immigration and housing. At the end he was reading notes during his final statement.
Gordon Brown tanked badly. Anyone who thinks he didn't wasn't watching the same debate as me. His closing statement summed up his problem. It was mostly negative and the rictus grin at the end will have put off any floating voter. I was with 40 people in Starbucks at Birmingham University (a 5 Live audience) and they all verbally shuddered when he did that. His makeup was appalling, he looked terrible and his opening remark about his bad day yesterday led to groans all round.
Brown had to do well tonight to show any sign of connecting with the 8 per cent of voters he needs to attract in the last seven days. He completly failed. No doubt Labour spinners are calling it a marvellous victory for him. If so, then they do their trade a disservice.
I know when someone does well or not. I called the first debate for Clegg and made clear I thought Cameron hadn't performed well. In the second I called it a narrow Cameron win, but effectively a score draw. Both those calls were right. So when I call it a Cameron decisive win tonight, I don't do it out of party loyalty, blind obedience, partisansip or anything else. I called it as I saw it. And so, it seems did most of the instant polls.
So, what did you think, dear readers?
* I'll be doing post match commentary on 5 Live when the wretched football finishes, alongside Mark Thompson and Will Straw.