There is a lingering smell of citrus around the pile of this week’s edition of ‘The Owl Post’… Even the copy you pick up smells faintly orange-y… Maybe you should read it somewhere warm?
Article by Persephone Hyland
Photograph by Saffron Foxclaw
This Quidditch season has been a phenomenal one with all kinds of surprises in it. So much so that this reporter has taken it upon herself to start this regular feature up. Interviews with our own Quidditch Players.
Today your reporter met up with Nazir Soltani, Hufflepuff’s new beater. If you recall, Hufflepuff won in their recent game against Gryffindor with a score of 330 to the lions’ 200. The meeting took place in an alcove of the library where Nazir paced excitedly.
1. & 2. So, you’re new to the team and this was your first game, was it not? How did it feel to win your very first game?
Yeah, my first. It was totally exhilarating. Playing in a real match felt totally different than practices had. There were stakes involved so when we came out on top, it felt like, whoa! I love being really active but I’ve mostly done solo sports, so winning with my teammates was awesome, it really gives you a sense of comradery.
3. You play the beater position. Do you have a certain technique when you play? Did you use it to ensure your team’s victory? You don’t have to give away trade Nazzy secrets.
I dunno if I’d call it a technique really, I know the game pretty well, read Quidditch Through the Ages and all that, so I have a sense for what I do and don’t want to happen. I think every beater does, really, so I don’t think there’s much of a secret to give away, since there’s only so many ways you can beat a bloody canon ball across a field, right?
4. You said you’ve read Quidditch through the Ages, does that mean you were a big fan before trying out? Is that what inspired you to try out?
Well I wouldn’t say that, I started getting interested in quidditch cause I’ve always been real active. I swim, bike, skateboard, snowboard.. I’ll try just about anything, and it was something I wanted to try! I started reading Quidditch Through the Ages when I decided I wanted to try for a spot on the team, cause I wanted to make sure I knew all the fouls so I wouldn’t accidentally screw us up.
5. Do you have a professional team that’s your favourite? Maybe a specific player?
I haven’t picked a favourite team yet since I haven’t seen any of them play, the book just kinda describes their histories rather than what they’ve been up to recently. But I’d like to go to a game or two over the summer if I can, and I’m saving up for my own broom.
6. You sound pretty hardworking, and it shows! You were very impressive during the game. Were you nervous you were going to fall right off your broom or embarrass yourself some other way?
Thanks. Surprisingly, no. I was more worried about being useless than embarrassing myself. I’d rather hit a lot of people and end up falling off my broom trying to take a swing, than not hit anything the entire game for fear of looking stupid. That’s what’d really embarrass me, I think. I can’t say I wasn’t nervous at the start of the game, but I think I channeled that into just trying to do what I set out there to do, ya know?
7. Are you looking forward to the game vs Slytherin? You know you’ll be facing off against me, ready to take a few bludgers to the face?
I am, Slytherin’s done really well in the past. Didn’t they win overall last year? Or if not, I’m pretty sure I remember them dominating pretty frequently.. so I’m eager to see what it feels like to go up against you. Maybe I’ll wear a helmet, and one of those muzzle looking things to protect my pearly whites!
8. Anyone you consider your rival? Someone on another team you just wanna smash in the face with a bludger?
I dunno, not that I can think of. I joked before that Eric from Ravenclaw was my rival, but that was just ‘cause of something in class, rather than anything serious. I don’t really have anyone I dislike, so anyone I hit with a bludger would be purely for tactical reasons.
9. Very diplomatic of you. So, after your team’s victory, how did you celebrate?
Well, first I went and got myself a kiss from my boyfriend, Tristan. Then I ran off and had a shower! He and I met up again and headed over to the camp area for the party afterward. I was starving so I stuffed myself with the food there, but after that I was real tired, so we left and just hung out, it was relaxing. I was exhausted from the game, after all
10. I just have one last question and then I’ll let you be… Do you have any advice for other beaters? You’re new but you did quite well this game.
My advice to other Beaters… look out for your team mates. Constantly move around or the bludger’s gonna find you before you spot it, but know when to stop and rotate to take a view of the field. And I guess, most of all, don’t hesitate. And don’t bother stopping to see if your bludger hits your target, soon as you let if fly there’s nothing you can do about it anyway, so just get right back to hunting the other one soon as you let one fly. And learn to make bruise paste.
So, there you have it. Play hard, party hard, and learn to make bruise paste! Hufflepuff is really fortunate to have such a great team this year and we wish them luck against Slytherin in the next game.