Mount Maunganui first time winners at Waikato Regionals
The 2009 Waikato Regional Debating Championships were held at the University of Waikato on Sunday 5 April. There were a record number of teams participating in the competition this year, with schools from as far as Whakatane and Mount Maunganui coming.
There were four preliminary rounds followed by the finals. Teams debated a range of topics including banning gambling, organ donations and employing assassinations as a foreign policy tool.
At the end of four preliminary rounds, five teams were in contention to make the final. St Paul’s Collegiate were unbeaten and as the top team in the competition they progressed to the final. There was intense competition for the second spot in the final as four teams were tied on three wins – Mount Maunganui College, St John’s College, Whakatane High School and St Peter’s School.
Mount Maunganui progressed to the final as they accumulated 12 “win points” which was higher than any other team in the competition. Going into the final St Paul’s Collegiate appeared to be the favourites as they had an unbeaten record in the tournament. The Grand Final was on the motion “This House would introduce work for welfare”. After the traditional coin toss Mount Maunganui found themselves affirming the motion and St Paul’s Collegiate were negating.
The final proved to be a highlight with both teams producing great analysis, humour and wit. Ultimately, in a close but clear decision the adjudication panel gave the debate and victory in the tournament to first time competitors Mount Maunganui in a 5-0 decision.
For the third year running we were able to select a Waikato Training team made up of younger students. This year the team consists of Brendan Madley (St John’s), Brody Leathem (Mount Maunganui), Aimee Page (Morrinsville College) and Daniel Schidt (St John’s).
We also announced the Waikato team for this year which will be travelling down to Wellington in August to defend its Schools Nationals Crown. The team for 2009 is Luke Craven (Bethlehem College), John Scott-Jones (St Paul’s) and Thomas Libeau (St Peter’s) with Wei Wei Ng (St Paul’s) as a reserve.
I would like to thank Susan Law and the University of Waikato Law School for providing both the venue and a sumptuous lunch. Also a special thank you to the adjudicators, most of whom travelled from out of town for the day: Max Harris, Alex Nelder, Desley Horton, Stephanie Thompson, Ben Milsom, Rachel McMaster, Mark Tushingham, Ralph Hall, Craig Riddell and Tim Condor.
Waikato Convenor 2009