Tag Archives: WIDPSC

Team Hong Kong Selections 2011 [WSDC 2011] [WIDPSC 2011]


Congratulations to the following 12 debaters who have made the Hong Kong squad for the World Schools Debating Championships 2011. Ultimately, 5 debaters will be chosen from the squad to represent Hong Kong in Dundee in August 2011.

  • Raphael Leung
  • Ben Allen
  • Tiffany Chung
  • Pavan Hegde
  • Sanborn Li
  • Griffith Cheng
  • Heather Pickerell
  • James Lo
  • Justin Lee
  • Austin Lee
  • Iris Zhang
  • Natalie So

I would like to thank all those who took part in the process. Good luck to those who missed out – you all have a lot to offer debating in Hong Kong. I look forward to seeing you all around the tournaments.

Greg Forse will call the first meeting of the squad before Christmas and spell out expectations. In general, we will train the squad regularly until February and then make the final 5 selection.

Hong Kong Schools Debating Council

https://hksdc.wordpress.com/ – Free speech. For all. Forever.

Worlds Teams Selection Announcement

The following two teams will be selected over the coming months. Below are details as to how these teams will be chosen. They are two distinct teams with very different skill sets, and therefore have two quite different selection processes.

1. WSDC: World Schools Debating Council Championships 2010 – Dundee, Scotland
    Tournament dates: August 16-26, 2011.
    Selection dates: November 22 and 24, 2010

2. WIDPSC: World Individuals Debating and Public Speaking Championship 2011 – Brisbane. Australia
     Tournament dates: April 3 – 9, 2011.
     Selection date: January 22, 2011

WSDC Selection

Number of places: 12 will be selected to form a squad which will be cut to the final team of 5 by the end of January after more intensive training and debates. (this is known as the squad system)

Dates: November 22nd (Monday) and 24th (Wednesday) 4.30 -7.30pm

Venue: To be announced

Trialists: Based on the rankings and performances at the recent HKSDC Senior Tournament, 18 students have earned the right to trial for the Hong Kong team. These students will be contacted shortly to determine their interest and availability. This method of selecting trialists was flagged in emails prior to the tournament and in several other announcements. HKSDC also reserves the right to consider, for inclusion in the trial, worthy candidates who were not available to debate on that day on a case by case basis.

Process: Trialists will complete 4 impromptu debates over two sessions before a panel of at least 6 selectors. Debaters will be mixed and matched until all selectors have seen all the debaters.

Contact: For more information or queries contact Michael Evershed at hongkongsdc@gmail.com

WIDPSC Selection

Number of places: 6 – maximum of 2 from any one school.

Date: January 22 2011

Venue: To be announced

Trialists: Each school can submit only 2 students for selection. Open to any school, but each school must supply an adjudicator. Schools should therefore conduct their own trials before the WIDPSC trial to determine the best two candidates.

Process: This is a stand alone, one day only event and the winner will be awarded a trophy from HKSDC. As in the past, this will be a mini World Individual’s Competition with all four categories being tested. For information about these, go to the WIDPSC resource center on the HKSDC website.
Students will be scored by the adjudicators on all four categories, their scores tallied and the top 6 students on the day will make up the team.

Rules: All the rules for the selection process will be published in due course.

Contact Person: For more information or queries contact the competition organizer, Mary Garland at mgarland@mail.sis.edu.hk


At the time of writing there is no sponsorship to defray the costs of student involvement in these two teams.
Experience tells us that at least $10,000 per person will be needed to cover the costs of travel, registration and coach’s subsidy.


Any student taking part in the trials must have prior parental permission to attend the tournaments.


At this stage register your interest with the contact persons: Mary Garland and Michael Evershed.
Further details will be published.

Bright future for debaters


From Young Post, South China Morning Post on 14th September 2010.

For the past 25 years, Hong Kong teams have performed well at international debating competitions, including the World Schools Debating Championships (WSDC) and the World Individual Debating and Public Speaking Championships (WIDPSC).

In 2007, Chris Sykes of Li Po Chun United World COllege set a national record by ranking sixth at WSDC, while the local team broke several Hong Kong records at this year’s WIDPSC.

Despite Hong Kong’s success, there has been no co-ordinated effort to organize territory-wide debating or public speaking contests in line wtih world school events. This is why Hong Kong could not send a team to the World Championships in Washington DC in 2008.

However, things finally came together in April this year. Michael Evershed of South Island School – manager of the WSDC team – set up the Hong Kong Schools Debating Council (HKSDC) with the support of both coaches and students across the city.
The council plans to organize two senior and two junior debating championships as well as a public speaking competition annually. It will also have the authority ot select both national debating and public speaking teams.
For the first time, HKSDC is organising debates under the world school system which involves two teams of three competing against each other.

The Heart of Europe Debating Tournament, a premier international event, provided the first chance for HKSDC to flex its new-found muscles. The council sent two teams to the Czech Republic after the debaters underwent intensive training supervised by official coaches Greg Forse and Roy Allen. The teams were accompanied by Raphael Leung, a trainee adjudicator from La Salle College.
Both teams performed extremely well – Team 1 made it to the finals, only to be beaten by South Africa, while Team 2 were knocked out in the quarter-finals. This was the best result for a Hong Kong team at an international tournament. On top of that, all eligible speakers ranked in the top 20.

HKSDC has been busy promoting debating in the city. It organised the Junior Debating Championships at Discovery Bay College in May. A total of 22 schools took aprt in the event with South Island School winning the title.

Twenty-eight schools will be participating in the first ever Senior Debating Championships, which will be held on September 25 at South Island School. It is bound to generate tremendous interest since the selections for the national debating team will be partly based on the performance of speakers at the competition.

HKSDC membership is open to students, coaches, teachers and associates from every school. They are welcome to learn more about the council, upcoming international and domestic tournaments, and the selction process for the national teams as well as register as a member at the council’s website, hksdc.wordpress.com.

Under the guidance of the HKSDC, Hong Kong’s debater’s have a bright future.

Heather Pickerell is a student at German Swiss International School

RESULTS: WIDPSC 2010 – Team Hong Kong


The 2010 World Individuals Debating and Public Speaking Championships have finished. Held in Lithuania this year, it has been a resounding success, especially for Team Hong Kong. Of the 52 spots in the finals (essentially a semi-final), Hong Kong snagged a record 7 spots in total, the best in Hong Kong’s 3 years of attendance.
Prakash Sanker and Paul Lau each grabbed 2 final spots last year totaling 4. That record was broken with this years astounding 7 final spots.

Debating : Heather Pickerell
Impromptu Speaking : Heather Pickerell, Benjamin So, Sachin Srivastava
Persuasive Speaking : Tiffany Chung
Interpretative Reading : Sachin Srivastava, Griffith Cheng

With the conclusion of WIDPSC 2010, the overall results have also come in. Team Hong Kong of Heather Pickerell, Sachin Srivastava, Benjamin So, Tiffany Chung, Griffith Cheng and Geoffrey (Biffo) Liew broke new ground in a highly competitive field.
Although Hong Kong was unlucky not to have any grand finalists, the record for 2010 was still shockingly impressive.

Here are the overall rankings for Team Hong Kong 2010:

  • 6th – Heather Pickerell – 725.58
  • 16th – Sachin Srivastava – Hong Kong – 719.60
  • 20th – Benjamin So – Hong Kong – 718.00
  • 24th – Tiffany Chung – Hong Kong – 715.83
  • 25th – Griffith Cheng – Hong Kong – 715.58
  • 44th – Geoffrey Liew – Hong Kong – 695.93

Congratulations to Team Hong Kong for a wonderful showing. Many of the team will remain in contention next year so the future looks bright for Hong Kong. As the founder of WIDPSC John Robinson said himself “Hong Kong is on the Map!”

Hong Kong

Results for Hong Kong following the 2 rounds of each category

Read the rest of this entry

HK team set to take on the world


From Young Post, South China Morning Post on 5th March 2010

(Clockwise from left) Geoffrey Liew, Sachin Srivastava, Mary Garland, Heather Pickerell, Tiffany Chung, Bnejamin So and Griffith Cheng

Next month, a team of local students will be jetting off to the debating equivalent of football’s World Cup. This year’s World Individual Debating and Public Speaking Championships will be held in Lithuania, with the six members of Hong Kong’s team selected at last month’s Hong Kong Public Speaking Championships. Students from all over the city gathered at South Island School to compete in the championships’ four sections. These were designed to test the students’ grasp of English, and their confidence in using the language in front of the judges and audience.

The six team members chosen, in ranking order, were: Benjamin So (Queen’s College), Heather Pickerell (German Swiss International School), Griffith Cheng (La Salle College), Tiffany Chung (South Island School), Geoffrey Liew (Sha Tin College) and Sachin Srivastava (German Swiss International School). The competition follows the rules of the World Championships, and the first round was persuasive speaking. Competitors had to deliver a speech nine to 13 minutes in length, using only one cue card for reference.

A wide variety of topics were chosen, with Benjamin delivering an impassioned speech on the tragedy of child soldiers. Tiffany tackled another shocking issue, human trafficking, pulling heartstrings with her emotive language and powerful delivery.

In the interpretive reading round, the competitors had to choose a passage of literary merit, and deliver it along with their own introduction. The total time allowed was between seven and 11 minutes.

Among many of the beautiful passages selected, an interesting coincidence occurred when both champion, Benjamin, and runner-up, Heather, chose passages from Charles Dickens. Benjamin’s piece was from A Tale of Two Cities and Heather’s from A Christmas Carol. Geoffrey chose something much more philosophical, reading the famous “Trial of Hank Rearden” from Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand.

After a quick lunch break, most of the speakers were back on familiar territory in the tough debating round. Heather was a member of the Hong Kong Debating Team, which competed in the World Championships in Qatar during the Lunar New Year holiday. Griffith had been part of La Salle College’s victorious team in both the Sing Tao, and the Lions Club & Yodac, Inter-school debating competitions last year. Sachin has previously won the Standard Chartered Public Speaking Competition.

Ben is a student at La Salle College