NAMDA Novice Cup 2013

Fresh off successes at Pres Cup and SOAS, the Warwick fleet (there were 20 of us) set sail for Hull, and the NAMDA Novice cup.

However stormy seas, some of us missed the first train, holding Maxine, Jamie, Ella, Angela, Erik and Ed back. Google said that there were no other trains that night as Hull is very far away.


The gang were considering spending the night in Leeds or Sheffield. Then the breakthrough came. Angela found an alternative route to Birmingham that gave us 5 minutes to make our connection.

A train carriage full of Warwick and Nottingham debaters. Not bad.

After some good hustle, the connection was not only made, but they beat the other group (Holly, Emilia, Hugh, Rachel, Nils, George, Amanda, Shahab, Trisha, Asher, Joe, Killian and Eliot) to the train. United, and later joined by Nottingham, everyone made their way to Hull.

To make the 4 hour journey go a little faster Tom from Nottingham taught us a Chinese card game called Big 2. It was a lot of fun.


Once in Hull, the Warwickers were glad to discover that they were in the land of £1.50 pints, with Eliot and Nick giving some useful life lessons on downing pints. We left the social after the bar-staff, reversing a worrying trend of “going home early” and “sleeping” to “be prepared and ready for tomorrow”.

Onto Saturday, and after a night on a cold hard wooden floor (get used to it freshers) , and the usual “odd” discussions “The bake off is just Game of Thrones with eclaires”-Ella, everybody was excited for a day of debating, with an excellent array of team names

Warwick Limbo

Warwick Purgatory

Warwick Fire and Brimstone

Warwick 9 Circles

Warwick Inferno




Warwick Hull.

The debating went well, with fun motions on tax, healthcare and porn, and all the Warwick teams did well. In particular commiserations to Shahab and Trisha who missed the break on speaker points, and congratulations to Nils who gave an 81 in round 2, the best speech of the tournament. According to storied judge Chris Woods “if he spent more time doing what he did for the first 3 minutes, and less time engaging with the novice debate around him, it would have been an 85.”

Congratulations are also in order for the 7 (n+1) Warwick judges who broke Rachel, Maxine, Ed, Eliot, Holly, George and Nick. Eliot and Ed got to chair a semi-final and final respectively.

The final panel was 6/7ths Warwick (we all felt bad for Matt from Lancaster for having to be the adult in the discussion) and the rest of the Warwick contingent chose to drink every time the word “rights” was mentioned in the final. The debate was about banning meat. Rights were discussed a lot. This angered Emilia enough that she smashed her wine glass (or it fell of f the table.)

Although the traditional boat race didn’t happen, the NAMDA novice social was as great as usual. Lots of fishbowls were drunk, lots of cheesy dance moves were pulled. Hull has a fantastic nightlife if your definition of fantastic is cheap and cheesy.


And finally everybody made their way home, their debating urges satisfied until at least Wednesday. There was a crying baby on the train, instantly awakening everyone’s hangovers (or at least Erik’s). Many Thanks go to TJ and Bender for running a great competition, Rhi for being great crash and everyone at Hull for creating such a welcoming competition and atmosphere. Next up, Durham IV.

PS Eliot thinks it is important that people know Ed did a mini-chunder that was induced by hiccups. It was only a hiccup worth. It might as well have been a big spit.