This is going to be the first time I blog about WSDC from a distance, so this will be an interesting experience in trying to pick up bits and pieces over the web. I apologies in advanced that this particular series of WSDC 2012 posts will not be quite a comprehensive as WSDC 2010 or WSDC 2011 for the simple reason that I’m not around to get comprehensive information.
For that reason, I’m not even really sure if today counts as Day 1. All the teams had arrived by yesterday, but many teams arrived even earlier than that. Australia and New Zealand for example, were both in South Africa earlier in the week for training sessions. Australia stopped by Dubai before beating New Zealand to South Africa, arriving on the 10th with New Zealand joining them on the 14th. China also appears to have been in South Africa for some practice debates earlier in the week. Administrative stuff such as adjudication test and briefings have also been conducted today.
Spar debates have been abound in the last few days. Team Hong Kong faced both South Africa and South Korea last night while Team Netherlands debated South Korea and Canada today. Teams have now moved into the Capetown Ritz, although there have been reports of room misallocation, cockroaches, air-conditioning problems and the like. Some teams even appear to have moved to a different hotel as a result. A significant number of participants have also noted the considerable heat in South Africa, coupled with the lack of air-conditioning in a number of debate venues, which should make for a rather ‘heated’ WSDC 2012.
The only event held today was the Opening Ceremony at Jameson Plaza at UCT. The WSDC organizers have some nice photos in their twitter stream of the venue, see https://twitter.com/#!/WSDC2012 for more pictures. The ceremony was preceded by drinks and snacks in the Plaza as well as a number of performances in the plaza. The actual ceremony itself included speeches by the VC of Cape Town University, Beth James on behalf of WSDC and Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
Tomorrow will see Round 1 and Round 2 completed.