Monday, February 15, 2016

Belgian Quidditch League Round Two Roundup

By Joke Daems

The Belgian Quidditch League (BQL) is the official competition for competitive teams in Belgium. Out of 11 official teams in Belgium, six currently play competitively. Each team plays one game every month. The Belgian Quidditch Federation (BQF) decides which games are played and provides the necessary officials, but the teams decide on a date themselves. An official game consists of three sets, corresponding to what used to be a full game. Winners are decided on a best-of-three basis.

With the BQL’s winter break over, it is time to take a look at the games played during Round Two and to look ahead to the games that will be played in Round Three.

Deurne Dodo A vs. Deurne Dodo B
Photo credit: Belgian Quidditch Federation
Although they are part of the same club and are trained by the same coach, Dodo B should not be seen as Dodo A’s “little brother.

“They have become a team in their own right since last year, with enthusiastic players and a unique identity," Coach Louis Lermytte said. 

Dodo B almost qualified for European Quidditch Cup (EQC) during the Belgian Cup, losing to Quidditch Louvain-la-Neuve on a snitch catch when the snitch was not paying attention. Though still a relatively young team, Dodo B have shown they are ready to fight, claiming one set in their match against the Brussels Qwaffles earlier this season.

The duel of the Dodos took place on a windy Tuesday, making it impossible for the teams to maintain their usual fast-paced passing game. The weather also caused the hoops to continuously fall down, to the great frustration of the players.

Limited visibility is another downside of midweek evening matches | Photo credit:
Dodo A clearly had the upper hand, especially during the first game. They knew how to play against Dodo B and neutralised their opponent’s scoring attempts. Dodo A had taken the game well out of snitch range when Dodo B caught the snitch, much to Lermytte’s dismay.

“A historical low for the team,” Lermytte said. “I loathe suicide catches."

During the second game, Dodo A’s play became sloppier. Dodo B capitalized on this sloppiness, but Dodo A still managed to win the game. The weekend before the match, Dodo A played a friendly tournament with Paris Frog Quidditch and Titans Paris Quidditch, which may explain why Dodo A could not give this game their best. Dodo B, however, kept fighting, with beater Katrien De Doncker playing both sets despite being injured. On Dodo A’s side, many players were unable to make it to the mid-week game and Lisa Aers had to stand her ground as the only female chaser for both games.
Leuven Leprechauns vs. Ghent Gargoyles

Photo credit: Belgian Quidditch Federation
Although the game was played on Leuven’s home turf, Ghent brought the most spectators, and they were the most enthusiastic spectators Belgian quidditch has recently seen. The game in general was a rather sad affair. It was a cold, grey, and wet day, and the game started almost an hour late due to a shortage of officiating staff.

The Ghent Gargoyles’ pregame huddle | Photo credit: Pieter Goossens
Leuven brought a roster of eight, leading to rapid exhaustion for all of their players; Ghent had twice that number of players, allowing them to sub frequently. Despite having the upper hand in terms of number of players, Ghent did not show their best quidditch and Leuven put up a good fight. For such a small squad, Leuven played with surprising aggression, allowing their beaters to move offensively across the midfield line. Most of Leuven’s attacks consisted of hero runs, usually performed by keeper Gust Lumbeeck. Chasers generally showed good positioning around the opponent's hoops, making it hard for Ghent to prevent some of the attacks. Still, the Gargoyles won the first set with a catch well out of snitch range.

As Lumbeeck got injured during the first set, and with the general exhaustion of players, Leuven decided to forfeit the second set. This meant a default 150*-0 win for Ghent.
Leviathans Quidditch Liège vs. Brussels Qwaffles
Photo credit: Belgian Quidditch Federation
Leviathans Quidditch Liège is the youngest team in the league, but also the most eager to learn. Team Coach Sébastien Fraiture tries to take something away from every game they play. 

“It’s interesting to play against the top teams in Belgium,” Fraiture said. “It shows us the benefits of different styles of play, and, in addition, we learn about our own mistakes.” Fraiture tries to use the new knowledge to prepare his players for upcoming games.

“I think we will be much better organised for the next round of [BQL] games,” Fraiture said. “I’m looking forward to finding out whether we’'ll be able to beat Deurne Dodo B and the Leuven Leprechauns.” So far, the Leviathans have come up against the Ghent Gargoyles and now Brussels Qwaffles, the fourth and second best team in Belgium, respectively, based on this season’s Belgian Quidditch Cup results.

Cory Faniel attempting a backwards snitch grab | Photo credit:
The Qwaffles were clearly the more dominant team this matchup, playing strong without completely wanting to crush or humiliate their opponents. They used their substitutes effectively and had an excellent beater game. The games were over in two sets, with Brussels Qwaffles catching the snitch well out of snitch range twice.

There were some lovely plays on both teams, although the Qwaffles were tactically stronger. Neither team was afraid to make contact and it was one of the more physical games in the BQL so far, sometimes even a little too physical, with referees having to card for contact from behind a few times.

Photo Credit: Belgian Quidditch Federation
All in all, there were no upset results this round, with the more dominant teams from Belgian Quidditch Cup dominating in the BQL as well. Belgian quidditch seems to be settling into its new league structure nicely, although some players complain about games starting too late and referees only being found at the last minute. Goal judges, timekeepers, and scorekeepers often have to be plucked from the inexperienced spectators, even though BQF’s policies state they should be provided by the home team.

Upcoming Round Predictions

Photo Credit: Belgian Quidditch Federation
Results for Round Two are in line with previous predictions, and we can expect the trend to continue. In February, the most exciting game will be that between the Leviathans and Deurne Dodo B, the two younger teams in the BQL. Lermytte is confident Dodo B has become a team in its own right, and Fraiture has been tweaking his team’s strategies after every game. With their smaller squad and less experienced players, the Leuven Leprechauns will probably be no match for the Brussels Qwaffles. Although squad size is not an issue for the Ghent Gargoyles, they will find it hard to stand their ground against Deurne Dodo A, the current Belgian champion. Later this season, March will bring us more evenly-matched games, possibly making Round Four the deciding round for many of the positions in the final ranking.


  1. Nice to see my picture in a Quidditch Post article :)

  2. Being a seeker is not only about endurance or strength, it's also about being agile and sneaky, waiting for the right moment to strike. You don't lose because the snitch was not paying attention, you win because you caught it at the right moment.