Sunday, July 24, 2011

Coming Up: The Ultimate Scenes in Kampala, Uganda and Chennai, India

For this years WCBU11, aka, Beach Worlds 2011 in Italy this August, I have been interviewing two unique teams coming to the tournament for the first time: the Kampala-based Team Uganda and the Chennai-based Team India.

Their stories are similar but different and will be recognizable to all who have played ultimate in developing nations. Typically, expats and NGO workers from UK, USA, Canada, Australia and the like support ultimate in local "international" schools and show up for informal pick-up games in towns and cities.

Eventually local players start to fill out the ranks and build up viable clubs, leagues and traveling teams.

Team Uganda, long-time leader Alex "Queenie" Matovu explained to me, used to be 70% expats and NGO workers but is now reversed with 90% Ugandans (with a few Kenyans and Rwandans in the mix).

Team India founder Narayan has a twist on this story however, as the Chennai team was founded by Indians who studied in the United States and played ultimate, returned to India and started up the scene.

This week look for full interviews with both Queenie and Narayan on the WCBU11 site and the Beach Blog on Sky'd Magazine.