Quidditch could have name changed in JK Rowling trans row

20 December 2021, 09:23 | Updated: 20 December 2021, 09:25

Quidditch organisers want to change the name of the sport
Quidditch organisers want to change the name of the sport. Picture: Alamy

By Asher McShane

Quidditch organisations have announced plans to change the name of the sport to 'distance' it from JK Rowling, the game’s creator’ over her views on transgender issues.

Quidditch UK, the national governing body for the sport, has backed a move by two groups in the US to drop the name, citing the Harry Potter creator’s ‘anti-trans’ positions. It is not clear what they plan to call the sport in future.

It is played around the world and is a real-life version of the magical game invented by JK Rowling in the Harry Potter books.

US Quidditch (USQ), the governing body for the sport in America, and Major League Quidditch (MLQ), said in a joint statement that the sport had developed a reputation as “one of the most progressive” in the world and that “both organisations feel it is imperative to live up to this reputation in all aspects of their operations”.

Matt Bateman, president of QuidditchUK, told the Times it fully supported the change. “We cannot continue to call ourselves quidditch and be associated with JK Rowling while she continues to make damaging and hateful comments against the many transgender athletes, staff and volunteers who call this sporting community home,” he said.

Quidditch players have to have a broomstick between their legs at all times and players score points by throwing a ball through three hoops fixed at either end of the pitch.

There are scores of teams playing in the UK which also has national sides. US Quidditch has about 100 official teams, and Major League Quidditch has 15 teams with one expansion team in the United States and Canada. The sport is played in about 40 countries around the world.