Young Yanks put the World on Notice
World Youth Tournament to have an American feel this Year.
Ask any wizard several years ago who they think of when they think of Quidditch, and it'd be unlikely any American would've been on the top of your list.
Times are certainly changing.
America has never been known as a bastion of proper Wizardry, but the large nation have been making Muggle-like strides towards making their mark on the world known. Their Universities, American Standard of Witchcraft and Wizardry and Salem International have both made and broke the top 20 in the International Registry of Esteemed Wizard makers, a list obviously registering the greatest 100 Wizarding schools the world has to offer. Our own Hogwarts has been in the top 3 of that list for the last 1000 years, ( though some say that in the first time in a millennium that might be changing.).
Not only that, but the Quidditch teams of these two schools have now for the first time in their history an opportunity to qualify for the World Youth Tournament, a Tournament which like the Tri-Wizard cup, showcases the best Wizarding schools and the future have to offer every few years. Unlike the Tri-Wizard Cup, Hogwarts had failed to make the last appearance in this tournament in 1991. Five years later they have qualified on points, and as an added surprise, an American school might end up qualifying as well.
When asked about the prospect of competing internationally for his school for the first time ever, American Standard 1995 MVP, Seeker Max Blackwood grinned proudly. "Oh yeah, I'm totally excited," he told me during my visit to his school last month. "We've been working really hard, and yeah we know they don't really respect us oversees as wizards, but it's a chance to show them. You know that our flying is as good as theirs, which is pretty damn good."
Blackwood (16) acknowledges his passion for the game came from a lifetime of following English team Puddlemere United and their Chaser, Joscelind Wadcock.
"Oh for sure. Nobody is disputing that Europe owns Quidditch and Wizardry in general as far as prestige and expertise and the best players and wizards go," Blackwood said, "But North America is really catching up. It was that Canadian witch that one last years Mad Mage contest (Mad Mage International Youth Magic Fair) right? And our President is doing pretty well internationally as far as showing the world what American wizards are made of, right?"
"I mean I'm not predicting that we'll blow them out of the sky. Heck, I'm not even predicting we'll get in, but I think we will. But seriously, we'll make sure they sit up and take notice, right? Who was that Muggle...Paul Revere? Warned that the British were coming? (Laughs) You're Paul Revere, buddy. Watch out for them Yankees!"
Perhaps not, but take notice? Most definitely.
-International Sports reporter Trudore Wickertatch reports.