The International Quidditch Association (yes, really) is considering hosting an exhibition tournament in London during the period of the 2012 Olympics. The broomstick-based game is adapted from the wizarding sport in the Harry Potter novels, but without the levitation and stuff. (That said, the 2009 World Cup was interrupted by a dementor attack.)
Real-life quidditch, we learn, is enjoyed by thousands of muggles around the world. Bafflingly, the IQA's website doesn't appear to tackle the first question on everyone's lips: how the hell do you recreate a game involving flying wizards and winged balls? From watching a few YouTube clips, we gather its some kind of cross between football, basketball and pantomime. The golden snitch is substituted for a loon in a yellow shirt and cap, whose role is to annoy the other players.
The London exhibition match would not be an official part of the 2012 Olympics in any way, but would find a ready-made and sizeable audience among the capital's temporarily swollen population. The IQA's commissioner, Alex Benepe, says:
“In summer 2012 the IQA will organize an expo match in London during the Olympics. The IQA is currently assessing venues, working with media contacts, and reaching out to local teams.”
We have local teams? Anyone want to get in touch...we'd love to know more.