Team Wales

WSDC 2012 – Grand Final Results

Motion: TH regrets South Africa’s decision to use the Truth and Reconciliation Commission rather than prosecuting perpetrators of crimes committed under Apartheid
Proposition: Team Wales ~ Amy Jones, David Wigley, Pearce Digby, David Wigley
Opposition: Team Scotland ~ Alfie Hinchliffe, Charlie Holmes, Ruth Cameron, Charlie Holmes

Scotland beat Wales 8-1

This is Scotland’s fourth Championship following 1990, 1999 and 2007. They were previously Runners-up in 1992, 1993, 1995, 1998 and 2001. Team Scotland included three returning members (Alfie Hinchliffe, Charlie Holmes and Ruth Cameron) from WSDC 2011, who were joined by Josh Richards and April Shepherd. It was the three veterns who represented Scotland in the Grand Finals. Scotland broke 5th, with 7 wins and just one loss against South Korea. They had unanimous wins over Greece and 2010 Champions Australia in the octo and quarter finals. Scotland beat this years surprise package, Philippines, 6-2 to progress to the finals.

Team Wales had just one returning member, David Wigley, although this was his 3 return, after attending WSDC 2009, 2010 and 2011. He was joined this year by Helen Price, Amy Jones and Piers Digby. Together, the team broke 7th, with 6 wins and 2 split losses to New Zealand and South Africa, who both won all 8 preliminary rounds. Wales progressed to the semifinals at the expense of India and Ireland. In a reverse of the semifinals of WSDC 2010, Wales beat England to reach the Grand Finals of WSDC 2012. This is Wales’s first ever Grand Final apperance, WSDC 2010’s semifinal apperance, of which David was a part of, being their previous highest ranking.

The Grand Finals was held in St George’s Cathedral, a stunning location and quite a fitting one given the motion. Here are some of the images of the venue that were tweeted:

Massive thanks to Sayeqa Islam, Paidamwoyo Mangondo and Sydney Atkins for live-tweeting the Grand Finals.

WSDC 2012 – SF Results and Grand Final Match-up

Quarterfinal Results
Motion: THS a 100% tax on inhereted wealth {Impromptu}
SF1: Philippines (Proposition – 8) vs. Scotland (Opposition – 5) ~~~ 6-1 Scotland (Opposition) @Kristenbosch Botanical Gardens
== Judging Panel: Steph Dick (C), Kristen Price, Josh Park, Chris Sanchez, Mehvesh Ahmed, Rocio Abril, Dan de Kadt
SF2: England (Proposition – 6) vs. Wales (Opposition – 7) ~~~ 6-1 Team (Opposition) @Kelvin Grove Country Club
== Judging Panel: Seham Areff (C), Chris Bishop, Taimur Bandey, Tracey Lee, Chris Hibbard, Iqbal Hafiedz, Eirianna Kouri
== England: Ben, Sam, Natasha, Ben
== Wales: Amy, David, Piers/Helen, David

Grand Final Match-up
Scotland (5) vs. Wales (7)

Team Scotland will make their 5th Grand Final apperance after 1998 (Runners-up), 1999 (Champions), 2001 (Runners-up) and 2007 (Champions). Scotland were semifinalists in 2010 after breaking 9th and defeating Wales and England in the knock-out rounds.
Team Wales will make history in their first ever Grand Final apperance. Their previous highest ranking came in 2010 where the team (James, David, Sarah, Josephine and Wonga) made it to the semifinals before loosing to England.

Grand Final Match-up by Total Speaker Points Ranking

Scotland (6) vs. Wales (9)

Massive thanks to Sayeqa Islam and Paidamwoyo Mangondo for live-tweeting SF2 and SF1 respectively.

Top Posts of the Year 2011

2011 is coming to a close, and PaulLau.com has grown another year older, 27 months and counting. There have been over 88,700 views since this blog began in October 2009, and over 550 posts (recall just 12 months ago, that number stood at a little over 180) which means that the “Posting at least once every week in 2011” commitment became more of a ‘Posting once a day’. It’s been an amazing year in terms of the blog, nearly 66,000 views just this year. So here’s a look back at the top posts of 2011.

1. WSDC 2011 – Team Lists [1st all time]
Part of the WSDC 2011 series, the posts resided in sidebar of PaulLau.com for over 8 months in the run-up to WSDC 2011 in Dundee, listing the team members attending WSDC 2011, at least those I could find.

2. Fire at UWC Atlantic College [2nd all time]
Other than debating, this was undoubtedly the second biggest story of the blog this year. I started this post 2 hours after the incident itself and continued updating it as a running summary of the situation.

3. TOK Essay – May 2012 [3rd all time]
Let’s just say this has not been the highlight of my Christmas holiday.

4. Fire at UWC Atlantic College – Photo Set 1 [4th all time]
The first images of the aftermath of the fire. Incidentally, April 14th was the busiest day on the blog with just under 1,300 views in just 24 hours.

5. [RESULTS] LSE Open 2011 [Tab]
A tournament I attended with David as my debating partner, joined by other Team Wales member Cat and Sarah. An amazing experience and my first peek into university level debating. You can read about what happened in my de-facto diary entry 1, 2 and see how Team Wales fared.

6. WSDC 2011 – Official World Rankings
Also part of the WSDC 2011 series, the official world rankings followed my earlier, and rather more controversial, post with my own calculations (which were quite accurate, even if I say so myself)

7. AC IB Results 2011
A good year for AC and some good results all together for my dear second years. Sadly, that puts the bar quite high for the UWC AC class of 2012.

8. [RESULTS] WSDC 2011 – Round-up
The ultimate summary of my final high-school tournament – WSDC 2011 – before I left the high-school debating scene. An amazing tournament and some unforgettable memories. Thank you to everyone.

9. Fire @UWC Atlantic College – Photo Set 2
The second set of photos regarding the Sunley fire, this time with my own photos.

10. SCMP – Profile: Chris Lee (IS) IGCSE Top of the World
A not so original post, but an article that did catch my eye, and clearly attracted quite a bit of attention too.

Honorary Mentions

I think it is worth noting at this point that although only 3 WSDC 2011 related posts were found in the top 10, and only 4 debating related posts, the next 10 posts are exclusively debating related, 8 of which are WSDC 2011 related as well. August 2011 was also the most popular month for PaulLau.com with nearly 14,000 views. A final thought: isn’t it interesting that Team Singapore, Team Canada and Team England come in as top posts on their own?

11. WSDC 2011 – Team Singapore
12. WSDC 2011 – Media Guide [UPDATED]
13. WSDC 2012 – Prepared Motions [UPDATED]
14. [RESULTS] WSDC 2011 – Round 1 & 2
15. WSDC 2011 – Team Canada
16. [RESULTS] WSDC 2011 – Break, Round 7 & 8
17. WSDC 2011 – Team England
18. [RESULTS] WSDC 2011 – Round 5 & 6
19. ASDC 2011 – Participating Institutions
20. WIDPSC 2011 – Grand Final [RESULTS] + Analysis

WSDC 2012 – Team Wales

Team Wales for WSDC 2012 has been selected. The selection process this year was a bit different due to the tighter time schedule. Instead of selecting individuals from the Wales Schools Debating Championships, all students were invited to submit applications and a number of students were then selected for the trials.

So attending WSDC 2012 on behalf of Wales will be:

  • David Wigley – Bishop of Llandaff Church in Wales High School {Returning member of Team Wales 2009, 2010, 2011}
  • Helen Price – Monmouth Girls
  • Amy Jones – Y Pant Comprehensive School
  • Piers Digby – Monmouth Boys

As was announced earlier, Harry Thomas of Oxford University will coach Team Wales for WSDC 2012.

My best wishes to Team Wales for WSDC 2012.

WSDC – Thank you

WSDC, although google insists stands for the World Swing Dance Council, will always invoke powerful memories of the one and only World Schools Debating Championships. First hearing about it in 2007, I began my WSDC journey back in 2009 with the Team Hong Kong trials. In January 2010, I headed to Doha, Qatar along with Ben, Prakash, Annette, Heather, Greg and Mr. Evershed where we broke by a whisker and made it to the octo-finals. Truly infected with the WSDC bug, 2011 meant an entirely new country, new school and a new WSDC team. Yes – I defected to Team Wales. After an elongated training period including a summer holiday, I headed to Dundee, Scotland in a train along with David, Sarah, Josephine and Johnny. Sadly, this campaign also ended at the octo-finals. Debating aside however, it was brilliant to be able to meet people from so many countries. Talking over a drink, on the bus and whilst playing pool; all part of the unforgettable experience we’ve had together. part and parcel of my WSDC experience of course has been they joys of blogging my way through it all.

During the campaign for WSDC 2010 and WSDC 2011, I’ve had the joy of representing 2 countries – Hong Kong and Wales, visited 2 countries – Doha, Qatar and Dundee, Scotland. After endless hours of training, I had 18 debates against 17 countries, given 22 speeches, at least 144 minutes of talking, lots of blogging, 11 wins, 38 ballots and 2 octo-finals. All good things come to a close and sadly I won’t be attending WSDC 2012.

The last two years have been a blast. I can’t thank enough the people who have helped me on this journey. Thank you and Goodbye!

WSDC 2011 – Unofficial Adjusted World Rankings

This is part of the WSDC 2011 series as I recount and report on the World School Debating Championship 2011 in Dundee, Scotland as a debater, blogger and Wales national team member.

Following yesterday’s post regarding raw world rankings of the top 31 teams, I have adjusted the world rankings to take into account all 48 teams that have been identified as taking part in WSDC 2011. There are some high ranking teams which have not be confirmed to be participating, I have chosen to include them in the list, especially if they appear likely to either be collecting funds or on the waiting list. I have however placed them in italics.

As with last time, I have used the same method that calculated last year’s team pre-tournament rankings, having removed WSDC 2007 results and substituted them with WSDC 2010 results. Results for a country from only one or even two WSDC tournaments reduces the accuracy of these pre-tournament rankings. To make calculations easier, I averaged the results to assume each national team debated at all three WSDCs between 2008 and 2010 and ranked them by the number of debates they have won and the number of judges they have received.

Adjusted in leiu of the participation list recently announced, the WSDC 2011 World Rankings are, in the following format – Country, Total wins out of 24, Total judges out of 72: (more…)