Monday, September 26, 2016

Unprecedented Access to the IQA: An In-depth Look at the Organisation, the Troubles It’s Faced over the Last Few Years, and What It Needs to Do to Move Forward

By Andy Marmer and Chula Bruggeling

The following people were interviewed for this story:
Chris Daw (IQA Trustee),
Alicia Radford (former IQA Trustee),
Nicole Hammer (IQA Interim Executive Director),
Harrison Homel (former IQA Executive Director),
Sophie Bonifaz (former IQA HR Director),
Ashley Cooper (former IQA Congress Secretary),
Matthew Guenzel (IQA Quidditch World Cup 2016 Tournament Director, IQA Membership Manager, former IQA President of Congress),  
Bex Alley (European Committee Executive Manager, IQA Quidditch World Cup 2016  Logistics Coordinator),
John Ssentamu (Quidditch Uganda),
Laurens Grinwis Plaat Stultjes (Belgian Quidditch Federation President),
Jonas Zinn (Deutscher Quidditchbund Finance Director),
Alper Erisen (Quidditch Dernegi President),
Mary Kimball (US Quidditch Events Director),
Jill Staniec (Quidditch Canada Membership Director, Chair of the IQA Rules Committee),
Jerona van der Gevel (former Quidditch Nederland President [then Muggle Quidditch Nederland]),
George MacLeod,
Marina Montenegro

The following people did not respond to interview requests or refused to speak with us: Rachael Glynn (former IQA Finance Director), Brian Gallaway (IQA President of Congress)

The following people contributed to reporting: Chula Bruggeling, Aaron Carroll, Jack Lennard, Andy Marmer, Austin Wallace, Abby Whiteley

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Key Issues
    1. Finance
      1. Bank Account(s)
      2. Membership Fees
      3. Transparency
    2. Governance
      1. Incorporation
      2. Board of Trustees
    3. Uganda
    4. Constitutional Issues
    5. A Fractured Organisation
      1. Volunteering
      2. Communication
      3. Ambitious Trustees
      4. An Understaffed IQA
  3. Is the IQA Irrelevant?
  4. Looking Forward: How can the IQA save itself?
    1. Regaining Trust
    2. The Right People
    3. A Clear Plan

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

The Quidditch Post Hires Chula Bruggeling and Elizabeth Barcelos as New CEOs

The Quidditch Post is excited to announce that Chula Bruggeling and Elizabeth Barcelos will be taking over as the organisation’s new CEOs, after an extensive search and multiple applications. They will replace CEOs and founders Andy Marmer and Lindsay Garten, who announced their departure last month.

Monday, September 19, 2016

A First Look At QCON and Its Implications

By Misha Whittingham

After months of speculation and rumors, it has been confirmed that there will be a new organisation in North American quidditch: the Quidditch Conference of the Northwest (QCON). The brainchild of Serena Cheong and Mitch Hatfield, it was modeled after the massively successful NorCal Quidditch Conference, but it will be the first of its kind to incorporate teams from both Canada and the USA since the IQA split in 2014. The conference spans the majority of what is locally referred to as the Cascadia region, which encompasses British Columbia, Washington, and Oregon. As such, the new conference will include every team expected to be official in their respective leagues from that region.

Monday, September 5, 2016

What's Next After the Asian Quidditch Cup?

By Andrew Kasimir 

The first Asian Quidditch Cup, held on 30 and 31 July, 2016, has come and gone, with the Australian National University Owls (ANU Owls) being crowned champions. It was a three-team tournament comprising two Malaysian teams, the Subang Chimaeras and Damansara Dementors, as well as the Australian champions. The final scores can be found here.

Until the Asian Quidditch Cup, the majority of Malaysian players had never played at a tournament with certified referees. Furthermore, the Subang Chimaeras and Damansara Dementors never really played as a unit until recently; the Chimaeras only started up in March of this year, meaning the Dementors were the only quidditch team in Malaysia for almost as long as quidditch has been in the country.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Intergalaktik Cup II Preview

By Kaan Bolat, Can Kaytaz, and Kamil Urgun

The Tournament
by Kaan Bolat

After the first version of the Intergalaktik Cup (IG), in which there were two groups, and teams were distributed to these groups in the order of their previous achievements, the second version of the tournament will follow a different format: as there are fewer teams attending this tournament than the last, every team will play with one another at Intergalaktik II (IG2). Each team will play three matches on the first day of this night tournament, where games will start at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 3 and end at 3 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 4. The second day will start at 6 p.m. on Sunday evening, with teams completing their games against each other, and then they will be ranked in the order of games won, point differential including the snitch, quaffle points scored, and, finally, number of snitches caught. After the ranking, the third- and fourth-placed teams will play for third place while the top two teams play in the final.

The first Intergalaktik Cup became known for its food, socials, and mud, and almost all European attendees spoke about how great the organisation was, from their point of view. Hosts METU Unicorns have upped the expectations for this second tournament; Intergalaktik Cup II has a boat trip scheduled for Sept. 5, and the great local food of Mersin will be present at the tournament area. Intergalaktik Cup II promises fabulousness in terms of socials, as well as the high-quality gameplay.

The Teams

METU Unicorns
by Can Kaytaz

METU Unicorns took fourth place at European Quidditch Cup (EQC) 2016 and looked impressive in the process, but had rather unconvincing games in Turkish Quidditch League (TQL) even though they’re in the lead with a 5-2 record. Last tournament, however, the Unicorns proved that their regular season results were not a big deal, as they hosted and won Intergalaktik Cup I.

METU Unicorns at Intergalaktik Cup I | Photo Credit: Ömer Çetin
The Unicorns will be fielding 13 players, including two merc players, German International beater Phillip Stolz and Hacettepe Phoenix chaser Tarkan Gökkaya. The Unicorns’ quaffle game will be shaped by strong point chasers Ahmet Can Karakadılar and Sıla Yüksel alongside the veterans Kaan Bolat and Can Kaytaz. The Unicorns have a small but strong beater lineup including Team Turkey’s Kamil Urgun and Sıla Kara.

The METU Unicorns have been putting up a strong zonal defence for the past year and are looking to improve even further. On the offense they play a patient passing game until they find a crack in their opponents’ defence, which they exploit through strong drives. The Unicorns have also improved their defensive seeking a lot but still have a hard time catching the snitch. The Unicorns will be looking to defend their title as champions, and they are the favourites of the tournament once again.

METU Minicorns
by Can Kaytaz

The METU Minicorns have a 2-5 record at the TQL and come to IG2 as the previous lower-bracket champions. They’re missing a few key players such as Gabriel Kasuba, Alper Urgun, and Melike Balkan, but they’ll have strong replacements for them. 

There will be 18 Minicorns at the Intergalaktik Cup II, three of them merc players. Okan Akdoğan of Hacettepe Phoenix will be joining Emin Ün, Kemal Yılmaz, Emre Sönmez, and Büşra Gürer in the quaffle game. Veteran beater Ruşen Sarı and talented Ece Akansel to lead their team to glory.

The Minicorns and Unicorns play a similar game, as they train together, but they might change their style slightly to accommodate their merc players. The Minicorns have a highly energetic squad and a lot of rotation options to stay fresh, so they will be looking to constantly press on the defence to force mistakes. If they can pair their defensive game with an organized offense we might see a final between these two teams with their trademark rock-paper-scissors to determine who gets the balls at the brooms up of the final.

İTÜ Honeybees
by Can Kaytaz

The İTÜ Honeybees are the rising team of Turkish quidditch this year. After a disappointing fifth place finish in the Turkish Quidditch Cup (TQC) 2, they found their way to EQC 2016 after a few dropouts, where they finished 13th. That same weekend, the Honeybees arranged four TQL fixtures, beating all Ankara teams except the Minicorns. The Honeybees are at second place in the TQL with a 5-2 record.

Honeybees will be joined by two merc players to have a squad of 17. Athletic keeper Arif Gülbiter and Team Turkey’s Olgaç Can Öztürk will be the key players in quaffle play. Laidback Cemre Avcı will be the main beater threat of Honeybees, but not having any female beaters will be a hindrance for them. 

The Honeybees combine a passing game with timely drives, but their incredibly small pool of female players might force them to adopt a slower approach. Missing some key players such as Ali Gülüm and Fuat Cemiloğlu will also hurt their chances of gold, but the Honeybees will play to get a medal, unless their love of alcoholic drinks gets the better of them

Uludağ Aragog’s
by Kamil Urgun

Uludağ Aragog’s played at both Turkish Quidditch Cup 2 (TQC 2) and the first Intergalaktik Cup. Unfortunately, their squad for Intergalaktik Cup II will consist of mostly freshmen and they will be looking for some experience before the upcoming Turkish Quidditch Cup in October. However, they’ve got Gülin Sedenay Saylam with them, who is able to play very well as both chaser and beater. Also, their keeper Başar Karamuk is the top scorer of the current Turkish Quidditch League season with 33 hoops in seven matches. 

The Aragog’s will be camping in Mersin for a week before the tournament, and they will be training regularly during that time. Even with the extra training, their squad is inexperienced when compared to the other four teams attending the tournament. We can expect them to finish the tournament off the podium; however, it is certain that they will not give up without challenging their opponents.    

Saps Quidditch Club
by Kamil Urgun

Saps QC is the second merc team in Turkey, the first one being METU Dragons, who attended Tournoi International de la Violette and took third place. Saps will be playing their very first match at Intergalaktik Cup II; thus it is really hard to predict their performance. Saps will bring 16 players to the tournament, including Team Turkey players Erdi Yeşildal, Çağatay Ural, and Utku Özver. All of them are playing for BOUN Centaurs, so they know each other well, and they will be the main scoring options of Saps QC.

Çağatay Ural keeps for the Boun Centaurs at EQC 2016 | Photo Credit: Ajantha Abey Quidditch Photography
When it comes to their beater line, Saps have Ragnhild W. Dahl of OSI Vikings, Alper Arıçay, and Kadir Ogün Akkaya, all three of whom are talented beaters, though they have never played together before. 

It is obvious that Saps have a squad full of talent and experience, but their performance will depend on whether they can manage to play as a team and succeed or play as individuals and fail. This team is a strong candidate for a medal, but their synergy as a team will determine the color of that medal.