Culture

The U.S. Quidditch Cup Soars to Texas in 2018

By Ben Holland Photography [CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons)

If you’ve ever wished that the magical competitive sport of “quidditch” as seen in the Harry Potter series was a real thing, you’re in luck! The U.S. Quidditch Cup is coming to Round Rock, Texas, in April 2018.

I’ve never been a fan of Harry Potter and his wizard world, but at least I know that the game “traditionally” involves flying around on brooms and chasing a yellow ball with flittering insect wings, so I’m just as confused as you are about how quidditch would be adapted to work as a game in the real world. According to the official U.S. Quidditch Cup website, the rules are as follows:

Quidditch is a mixed gender full contact sport with a unique mix of elements from rugby, basketball, and dodgeball. A quidditch team is made up of seven athletes who play with brooms between their legs at all times. While the game can appear chaotic to the casual observer, quidditch is an exciting sport to watch and is even more fun to play.

Three chasers play with a ball called the quaffle and score goals worth 10 points each by shooting or dunking the ball through any one of three hoops at the other end of the pitch. They advance the quaffle down the field by running with it, passing it to teammates, or kicking it. Each team has a keeper who defends the goal hoops. Two beaters use dodgeballs called bludgers to disrupt the flow of the game by “knocking out” other players. Any player hit by a bludger is out of play until they touch their own hoops. Each team also has a seeker who tries to catch the snitch. The snitch is a ball attached to the waistband of the snitch runner, a neutral athlete in a yellow uniform who uses any means to avoid capture. The snitch is worth 30 points and its capture ends the game. If the score is tied after the snitch catch, the game proceeds into overtime.

The quidditch tournament scene launched in 2005 and grew to accommodate 60 quidditch teams spread out across the United States, and there are more teams located in Texas than any other state. Some of the quidditch enthusiasts that might be in your neck of the woods include the Tufts University Tufflepuffs (Northeast), the Long Beach Funky Quaffles (West), and the Silicon Valley Skrewts (West).

If we’re going to make fictional sports a reality, why not go for something bigger, badder, and more practical, like podracing, as seen in Star Wars? I’d pay good money for a season pass at the local podracing circuit!