Dodging the competition: the fight for a spot on Team Canada
If you thought dodgeball was just a hit Hollywood movie or a game played in the school yard think again.
Nearly one hundred people turned out Sunday to try out for a spot on the Canadian National Dodgeball Team. The day long tournament featured eight men's teams and four women's teams.
Lynn Kirkpatrick, a world champion dodgeball player and a four time Team Canada member, was playing with team Beavertails.
"It takes a lot of passion, that's the first thing. And a lot of playing the game," she said.
Kirkpatrick is hoping to qualify for the upcoming world championships in Toronto. There are eight spots up for grabs on the women's team. Those spots will be decided in the Spring.
"Being able to do that and to participate in the larger dodgeball community with people who have the same passion is a tremendous opportunity," she said.
Canada dominated on the international stage, where last year the men's team won gold at the World Dodgeball Federation 2016 World Championships in Australia and the women finished second.
Dodgeball as a competitive sport is relatively new in Canada, but it is growing in popularity. The Hollywood hit Dodgeball helped bring the sport into the mainstream and since then teams and leagues have sprouted up right across the country.
"It's growing every year," said Bethel Lascano, the Vice President at Dodgeball Canada. "It's a lot more organized than you remember or than it seems and it's really competitive and really inclusive."
Players take the game seriously at this level of competition. They practice two to three times a week with their team, workout and have coaches to help them improve their game.
"You have to be open to learning new skills. It's more than just catching and dodging; it's about team communication and coordination," said Anthony Nguyen, a former Team Canada player.
Tryouts are also happening in Halifax and Toronto later in the month.