Canberra to host national quidditch tournament
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Canberra to host national quidditch tournament

The Australian Institute of Sport has created and hosted elite athletes for nearly 30 years, and in December the sporting headquarters will be home to the 2016 national quidditch tournament, the QUAFL Cup.

Quidditch is a sport played in the Harry Potter fictional novel series and has been adopted for the non-flying mere mortals.

Oscar Cozens, Clara Barrs, Hannah Jackson and the ANU team, on "Brooms Up" (that is, the start of the game) at last August's Triwizard Tournament.

Oscar Cozens, Clara Barrs, Hannah Jackson and the ANU team, on "Brooms Up" (that is, the start of the game) at last August's Triwizard Tournament.Credit:Ajantha Abey

On land the sport involves a variety of positional players with differing roles, and the outcome resembles a combination of dodge ball, rugby, netball and even tag.

Canberra-based player and organiser for the tournament bid Merryn Christian said the sport had been played in Australia for about seven years and had emerged from the fictional novels into its own entity.

"Quidditch as 'real' sport was invented about 10 years ago in the Midwest in America," she said. "It was sort of built off the back of college football and other college sports that America has, and over the last couple of years it has really been refined into a nationally recognised and regulated sport."

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Ms Christian said despite the sport being full-contact, it was not limited to people of exceptional strength or fitness.

"Quidditch is sort of unique in that anyone from any sporting background can join with any fitness background or sporting experience," she said. "There is always a way for them to easily integrate in to the sport and from there you can build the fitness or the skills."

Canberra-based ANU Owls player and national team captain James Mortensen said the hard work put into the bid was a great achievement and he though it was going to be "the best that we've had".

"As a young sport it's generally hosted, at best, on good university fields with decent amenities and maybe a Subway catered lunch," he said. "But the guys at the ANU team have managed to get the AIS on board so we'll be out at Bruce at the institute of sport. And just that in itself is great that the AIS has supported the bid in so far as recognition and seeing quidditch as a sport more highly regarded."