Monday, February 6, 2012

IVED 2012: Competition Begins to Fill the Air in Malang

Universitas Muhammadiyah Malang - Venue of IVED 2012
The 15th edition of the Indonesian Varsities English Debate, the country's most prestigious tournament, will  start tomorrow at Universitas Muhammadiyah Malang. Debaters have begun to descend on the hillside city since this morning, emanating air of competition to the cool climate. Preliminary debates will take place on Wednesday and Thursday with 3 rounds per day.

The best 16 on the tab will qualify for the main knockouts while the top 8 novice teams can progress into a separate elimination stage. Usually, only teams with 4 wins from 6 rounds could break in the open category.

All advance rounds (4 mains, 3 novices) will be held on Friday, suggesting a long day with a late end. The original rundown has no obvious slot for Friday prayers, unusual for any Indonesian event, especially one held at an Islamic university. According to the official schedule, the grandfinal winners, however, will only be revealed on Saturday night after excursions around the touristy region of Malang.

The 3-on-3 IVED is the de-facto national championships and winners are considered the best of their generation. Interestingly, this year's edition is set to provide the springboard to stardom. Based on the list of participants, most schools are fielding young or less triumphant speakers with only 4 out of 180 debaters with varsity trophies to boast. Morever, none of those victories come from the top 4 varsity tournaments (IVED, ALSA UI, JOVED, NUEDC).

In 2011, Universitas Gadjah Mada won with 2 debaters who reached the grandfinals in IVED 2010 and championed JOVED 2010, beating an Universitas Indonesia team, which was led by a JOVED 2009 champ. There will not be such a case this year. New stars, upsets and surprises may become the theme in IVED 2012. Let the debates begin!

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