AFTER the city hosted a successful international tournament of the game Quidditch an Oxford player is hoping to take his team to the sport’s World Cup.

The game was invented by author JK Rowling in the popular Harry Potter books.

And Cutteslowe Park played host to teams from the UK, US, Canada, France and Australia on Sunday.

The Oxford team lost each of its four games, but captain Angus Barry was picked to join the UK team.

Mr Barry, 18, a student at Worcester College in Walton Street, has been playing the game since the Oxford team started in November.

He said: “One of my friends challenged me to a game at the beginning of the year.

“It was only ever supposed to be one game, but everyone got really into it.”

And while he doesn’t expect the city to host an international tournament again soon, he said the Oxford team has now set its sights on taking part in next year’s International Quidditch Association’s World Cup.

Mr Barry said: “We would like to go to the World Cup.

“We would not be ready for this year but hopefully next year.”

In the Harry Potter books, the game is played on flying brooms with three different types of balls, one of which is thrown or kicked through a hoop, another of which is hit at other players, and a third – the snitch – which ends the game when it is caught by a player.

While the ‘muggle’ version of the game, which was first created in America in 2005, leaves both feet on the ground, all other elements of the sport remain.

Mr Barry said: “It’s quite good to watch because there’s a lot of stuff going on at the same time.

“It can be quite rough – it’s a full contact sport.”

Stevie Finegan, 22, from Harris Manchester College, Mansfield Road, joined the Oxford side in January and has a full quidditch kit in college colours.

She said: “I’m an all things Harry Potter fan and I generally find bringing Harry Potter into the real world in anyway is always a lot of fun.”

Oxford City Council leader Bob Price said he welcomed the event with open arms.

He said: “It is an example of the fact that Oxford is a place where all sorts of unusual things happen.

“Because we are a world name, it is place where people think if they’re going to put something of this type on, let’s go to the place that has that.”

The Oxford team is open to anyone and prospective players should turn up on Saturdays at the University Parks at noon.

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