Bangladesh Roars in the Asian Debating Scene
Tahmed Mohammad Ismail Adnan
As the host announced, "And the next team breaking into the top-16 of the Asian Schools Debate Championship 2011 is---", the hearts of the three young school debaters were pounding like never before, and the sole flag bearer of Bangladesh heard the name chanted in the huge hall in Seoul... "From Bangladesh, Team Mastermind!"
Mushfiq Jahan Khan, Mustahsin-Ul-Aziz and Shaadmaan Ahmed Siddiqui made Mastermind School, and Bangladesh proud as their team qualified for the knock-out stage at the Asian Schools Debate Championship (ASDC) 2011, hosted by Daewon Foreign Language High School in Seoul, South Korea.
Taking a look in the rear-view mirror, the debating community of Bangladesh saw tremendous success and a gain of momentum. Be it Team IBA bringing home the first ever international championship of Bangladesh at OIC Inter-Varsity Debate Championship 2010 at Malaysia, or North South University winning the bid to host the Asian British Parliamentary Debate Championship 2011 (to be held later this year), Mastermind School ranking among the top-16 debate teams at ASDC was surely the icing on the cake.
Earlier this year, Mastermind School hosted one of the largest national debate tournaments till date, comprising of 48 teams, where a team from Mastermind itself was ranked as the top breaking team of the tournament, and later also brought home the Runner-Up trophy.
Adding more to that, the last one year saw Mastermind Debating Society (MMDS) ranking among the top school-level debate clubs of Bangladesh, where almost every national debate tournament saw a team from MMDS in the Grand Finale, and at least two of its debaters ranking among the top 5 debaters.
Photos: Shaadmaan Ahmed Siddiqui
Special thanks go to the Principal and the Head of Administration of Mastermind School, who financed the team's entire trip to Seoul. Not to leave out the fact that half of that success would not have been possible without the never-ending support and guidance of the official coach of MMDS, Md. Abir Hasan, who himself is the first ever international debate champion of Bangladesh, having also won the “Best Speaker of the Grand Final" at OIC Debate Championship in Malaysia.
However, if an international achievement by the three young debaters at ASDC is to be considered as a cherry on top of an already-formidable cake, there are more add-ons. Team Mastermind defeated the champions of last year's ASDC in one of the qualifying rounds of this year's championship. Unfortunately the journey had to come to a halt for Team Mastermind at Seoul after a heated debate against a team from Philippines, who later on bagged the runners-up title. The debate was later announced as the closest debate of that round, with a margin of only 2 marks.
On a brighter note, all the speakers from Team Mastermind had very good scores and ranked high among the best debaters from all over Asia. Mustahsin-ul-Aziz was ranked 26th, Mushfiq Jahan Khan was ranked 19th, and Shaadmaan Ahmed Siddiqui jointly ranked 10th by their scores in the entire competition.
"Being the sole representative of Bangladesh among other Asian countries and representing the school at an international level is an indescribable experience. We are very proud to have held the flag of Bangladesh high on the Asian platform, for our school, for our entire debating community and for our country," shared Mushfiq.
Malaysia won the bid for hosting the Asians School Debate Championship in the year 2012. In the meantime, a team from Bangladesh is currently residing in Dundee, Scotland, competing in the World Schools' Debate Championship (WSDC) 2011. Let's keep our fingers crossed as we hope for the best so that they make the Bangladeshi debate community proud once again!
(The writer is Ex-President, Mastermind Debating Society.)
DID YOU KNOW?
Walter was very happy at his family's farm and developed his love for animals while living there. After the farm failed, the family moved to Kansas City, Missouri, where Walter helped his father deliver newspapers. He also sold candies and newspapers on the train that traveled between Kansas City and Chicago, Illinois. He began drawing and took some art lessons during this time. Disney dropped out of high school at seventeen to serve in World War I. After a short stretch as an ambulance driver, he returned to Kansas City in 1919 to work as a commercial illustrator and later made crude animated cartoons. By 1922 he had set up his own shop as a partner with Ub Iwerks, whose drawing ability and technical skills were major factors in Disney's eventual success!
Information source: Internet.