Georgetown Debate Team Named Qatar Universities Debate League and Nationals Champions at QF

GU-Q debating union members

In a clean sweep of the country’s college-level debate circuit, QF partner Georgetown University in Qatar’s (GU-Q) student debate team has been crowned winner of both the Qatar Universities Debate League (QUDL) and Qatar Universities Nationals Debate Tournament for the 2020-2021 season, as well as clinching the Best Speaker Award at both events and several other awards. 

QatarDebate, a member of Qatar Foundation, organizes a series of league events and a national championship tournament for university students, who compete with each other throughout the year for the chance to win the league title and the national championship title. 

At the Qatar Universities Debate League spread across four tournaments, the GU-Q debate team was cumulatively ranked the highest and won the league as a whole. The team also clinched victory at the Nationals tournament that followed, beating out university teams from across Qatar. Out of the four teams in the finals, three represented GU-Q.

The Dean of GU-Q, Dr. Ahmad Dallal, said: “Congratulations to the GU-Q debate team for winning the QUDL Nationals and taking many top spots. Student champions such as Al Alanoud Al-Thani (GU-Q’24) and Adrian Lopes (GU-Q’24) and League and National debate best speaker Pragyan Acharya (GU-Q’24) are great examples of the kind of skills that are honed daily in the classroom and make for great success in the global arena of dialogue and debate.”

The GU-Q team of highly skilled debaters was led by this year’s new captain, first-year student 

Pragyan Acharya, who won Best Speaker in both the Nationals Tournament and the Debate League. “Despite being a relatively young team, several first year students were recognized in the top ten Best Speakers awards, in both the novice and overall categories. That is a very promising sign for next year’s debate season,” he said.

In high school, Pragyam debated for and now coaches the Nepali national team, and applied to GU-Q to study political science. “I had already heard about Qatar Debate and the general support for competitive debating at GU-Q, plus it’s a great university not far from home. I decided to apply because I would get that experience, that diversity, and the financial support.”

As the team captain, Pragyan is tasked with organizing weekly training, where he also creates and delivers workshops and practice debates. While the season has ended, Pragyan hopes the team has the opportunity to test their skills against the world’s best debaters by taking part in more international events. “Next year, we hope to grow as a team, and continue improving our skills. At the end of the day, debate isn’t one dimensional, it’s a sport.” 


Qatar Universities Debate League Champion: GU-Q

Best Speakers

Best Speaker: Pragyan Acharya (SFS’24)

2nd Best League Speaker: Muhhamad Saad Ullah (SFS’23)

3rd Best League Speaker: Khusbhoo Shah (SFS’22)

4th Best League Speaker: Asma Shakeel (SFS’24) (novice debater, won in overall category)

7th Best League Speaker: Huda Syed (SFS’24) (novice debater, won in overall category)

Best Novice League Speaker Awards (first year of debating)

2nd Best Novice League Speaker: Shaheer Liaqat (SFS’24)

3rd Best Novice League Speaker: Adrian Lopes (SFS’24)

4th Best Novice League Speaker: Valeriia Chertilina (SFS’24)

5th Best Novice League Speaker: Devashish Regmi (SFS’24)


Nationals Champions: GU-Q

Qatar Universities National Champion: Al Anoud Al-Thani (SFS’24), Adrian Lopes (SFS’24)

Qatar Universities Nationals Runner Up : Pragyan Acharya (SFS’24), Reem Al-Kubaisi (SFS’24)

Qatar Universities Nationals Finals Debate Best Speaker: Pragyan Acharya (SFS’24)

Qatar Universities Nationals Best Speaker: Pragyan Acharya (SFS’24)  

Qatar Universities Nationals Other Speaker Awards:

2nd Best National Speaker: Al Anoud Al Thani (SFS’24)

Tied 3rd Best National Speaker: Adrian Lopes (SFS’24)

Tied 3rd Best National Speaker: Reem Al-Kubaisi (SFS’24)

Teams that debated for GU-Q at the Nationals:

Adrian Lopes, Al Anoud Al Thani

Reem Al-Kubaisi, Pragyan Acharya

Shaheer Liaqat, Valeriia Chertilinia

Muhammad Saad Ullah, Khushboo Shah

Huda Syed, Asma Shakeel

Teams that after 3 rounds were amongst the top 4 teams that made it to the National Grand Finals:

Reem Al-Kubaisi, Pragyan Acharya

Al Anoud Al Thani, Adrian Lopes

Shaheer Liaqat, Valeriia Chertilinia