LUMS Makes a Mark at the Australasian Intervarsity Debating Championship 2020
The Debates and Recitation Society at LUMS (DRUMS) recently competed at the Australasian Intervarsity Debating Championship 2020, held by Monash University, Australia from July 11-15, 2020, and was able to make a mark with some tremendous achievements.
The Australasian Intervarsity Debating Championship, also known as the Australs, has historically been the largest global debating event, second only to world championships. With participation from 135 teams, this year was its largest edition. More importantly, this year the event took place online, which meant that many South Asian teams that had previously been unable to participate in the tournament had the chance to do so. Thus, LUMS got the opportunity to compete at a platform where some of the biggest and most experienced teams from around Australasia participated. This included teams from Taylor’s University, Malaysia; University of Sydney, Australia; University of Auckland, New Zealand; IBA Dhaka, Bangladesh; Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines, and many more.
At this year’s Championship, the LUMS teams won many accolades. For the first time in Pakistan's debate history, a team broke in the open category; with LUMS 1 comprising of Ahsan Muhammad, Talha Wani and Taha Iqbal breaking 9th and going on to speak at the Open Quarter finals, defeating teams like Sydney, Auckland and Monash Australia, before bowing out of the tournament with unprecedented achievements. In this process they also became one of the top eight teams in Australasia. Ahsan and Taha also ranked as the 25th and 22nd best speakers of the tournament respectively.
In their very first major tournament and just a week after finding out they would be speaking, LUMS 3, consisting of Uswah Fatima, Zoha Mirza and Shahmir Ahmed, broke all boundaries and made it to the ESL Octo-finals. For them to perform this well after such a short preparation time has been truly inspirational.
Momina Khurshid, Hira Farooq and Danyal Maqbool of LUMS 2 won four rounds and only missed out on the ESL break on speaker scores. Additionally, Humza Jami, a LUMS alumnus, broke as a judge and went on to adjudicate the Open Quarter finals. These performances are a testament to the talent in LUMS and Pakistan.
DRUMS appreciates the efforts of Imaad Hasan and Ashar Imran for signing up as adjudicators for the tournament on a one-day notice so that the teams could compete.
The success that LUMS has seen goes beyond just the Australs. DRUMS found immense success in the season leading up to the main Australs tournament and have been the ESL grand champions in four Pre-Austral tournaments and runners up in the fifth one. DRUMS would also like to congratulate Maha Malik, Ashar Imran and Zaid Abro for contributing to that successful run!
DRUMS is keen to make the most out of the unique opportunities that online tournaments provide. With Habib University breaking in the open category and going on till the ESL Quarter finals, the best open speaker of the tournament being from South Asia, and numerous South Asian judges making the break, DRUMS is confident that they can continue to break barriers in the near future.
Watch LUMS 1 compete against Taylor's 1 in the Open Quarterfinals:
To see the list of team and speaker positions, click here.