City Scholars Moot Final – Carmen Draghici

After three intense preliminary rounds, the finals of the City Scholars Mooting Competition were held on March 12, 2014 at the Supreme Court and adjudicated by His Honour Judge Donald Cryan (Clerkenwell and Shoreditch County Court, High Court Family Division, Reader Elect of the Inner Temple).

An enthusiastic audience of City Law School students attended the event and supported the four finalists:

Grace Allen (GELLB1) (Senior Appellant)
Ali Hafeez (LLB1) (Senior Respondent)
Nicholas Murphy (GELLB2) (Junior Appellant)
Sabrina Samis (GELLB1) (Junior Respondent)

After the presentation of oral arguments by the appellant and respondent teams, Judge Cryan elucidated the intricate legal issues in contention under the law of contracts and spoke about the art of advocacy.
He commended all mooters on the quality of their performance, including apt submissions in respect of a complex case and a very good reaction to the judge’s demanding questioning.

While sharing with the audience the difficulty of deciding between four outstanding finalists, the judge ultimately designated Nicholas Murphy as the winner of the competition. He congratulated Nicholas on his ability to persuasively argue what the judge deemed to be the losing case in the scenario at hand and to put forward an effective response to the questioning.

He also praised the eloquence of the most junior participant, Ali Hafeez, whose first-year undergraduate status had not been noticeable in his performance.

Here’s what our winner Nicholas had to say:

Wednesday’s final was quite simply, a great night, and it felt very appropriate to end three very competitive rounds of mooting in Court 1 of the nation’s highest court. While nerves were certainly running high before the evening began (soothed with several litres of milky tea), once we entered Court 1 and got settled, everything very quickly calmed down as we focussed on our submissions. The final was judged by HH Judge Donald Cryan, a bulwark of mooting at City, who instantly showed his judicial talons by asking us some challenging and probing questions about our arguments – putting each of us on the back-foot!

However, the best part of the evening was being able to have a legal dust-up with friends, without some of the ‘traditional’ rivalry of mooting competitions. Because of this, it was a real surprise to be named the winner in light of such sustained and able competition. I really have to thank HHJ Cryan, Catherine Elliott and Carmen Draghici for such a fantastic experience.

The City Law School is delighted to offer this exceptional mooting opportunity to its students and is extremely proud of their achievements. The City Scholars Moot is open to all undergraduate and postgraduate LLB students as well as those on LLM courses, and is run by Senior Lecturer Catherine Elliott. Many thanks to Judge Cryan for his support of this moot, and to Pearson for their sponsorship.

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