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Hashtag Tom on being crowned 2019/20 ePL champion…

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Hashtag Tom on being crowned 2019/20 ePL champion…
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It meant a lot for me to be crowned the 2019/20 ePL champion as it is one of the most prestigious tournaments on the professional FIFA circuit and the first major trophy of my career. I didn’t even make the first tournament on FIFA 19 so winning it on FIFA 20 was even more special.

Hashtag Tom on whether winning was the biggest success of his career to date…

Yeah, it was the biggest success I’ve had in my career. It was my first major trophy and something I’d been working towards for four years in the FIFA scene. It’s the reason I play competitive FIFA so getting my first one meant a lot and considering it’s the only trophy I have to my name I have to say it’s the biggest success!

Hashtag Tom on finally winning a title after experiencing disappointments…

I can’t explain the number of times I had walked away from a tournament in FIFA 19 & 20 and felt like I should have won. I lost a final to Tekkz before, lost in two semi-finals and a quarter-final where really, I felt like I should have been lifting the trophy. To finally win the ePremier League after a lot of tough losses felt extra satisfying. My main emotion was relief as I really wanted to end the year with a trophy to my name.

Hashtag Tom on the strength of the underdogs in the ePL…

I think it shows how strong the UK FIFA scene is. I watched [2019/20 runner-up] Marc Marley beat my teammate Shawrey before he beat Tekkz [in the Xbox final] so I knew just how good he was. I think Marc did unbelievably well to beat the biggest names in the tournament so all credit to him. Hammond and Callum from Spurs and Chelsea were also seen as ‘underdogs’ before the tournament and went far on the PS4 side of things, so I think it shows the strength in depth in the ePremier League. 

Hashtag Tom on what he’s been up to since winning ePL…

I took a couple of weeks off before the release of FIFA 21. I haven’t played in any competitive tournaments since the ePL. The FIFA 21 competitive season has been put back a bit due to COVID and having to set up a new way of playing from home instead of live events. My first tournament was at the end of November.

Hashtag Tom defending his title this season…

I will be looking to defend my title this season. I haven’t decided who I will be representing yet, but it might be time to try again for Tottenham Hotspur as I support them. 

Hashtag Tom’s advice for anybody thinking about playing in the tournament, be it professionals or amateurs….

I would recommend they take part as the Premier League is a massive tournament with a lot of people watching. It also gives you the unique chance to try and represent your favourite Premier League team. And if you’re looking to break in to professional FIFA then this is the perfect opportunity for UK talent to showcase their talent.

Asia

VSPO Chairman Dino Ying Named Member of the Asian Games Esports Task Force

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VSPO chairman and co-founder Dino Ying has been appointed as one of the three members of the esports title selection task force for the 20th Asian Games in 2026.

The mandate of the task force is “to select and recommend for approval” titles that will be featured at the 20th Asian Games, according to the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA). Hideki Okamura from Japan and Mr. Carlos Tang Jiahe from Hong Kong are the two other members of the task force.

Earlier this year, Ying was already elected as a member of the OCA’s first Esports and E Martial Art Committee.

VSPO, Asia’s largest esports operator, has played a key role in making esports’ entry into the Asian Games a reality. VSPO was the operator for the esports series at both Jakarta Palembang 2018 Asian Games and the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games where esports became first a demonstration sport and later a medal sport.

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Asia

Ampverse DMI Partners with Orangutan in Multi-Year Deal; College Rivals BGMI Champions to Join Exclusive Roster

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College Rivals find, Sahil Nagpal gets dream pro debut with Rivals Ape X team

India’s largest Collegiate Esports and Gaming IP, College Rivals, owned by Ampverse DMI, has forged a strategic alliance with Orangutan, a leading esports organization in India. College Rivals, remains committed to offering professional gaming prospects to college students and has awarded its inaugural professional gaming contract to Sahil Nagpal, a student from Jalandhar, Punjab.

He demonstrated his prowess during the Season 1 representing the potential and caliber that this College IP aims to tap, cultivate and unearth as part its commitment to foster grassroot esports talents and provide them with a life changing platform and experience.

Joining Orangutan’s Academy BGMI team, Sahil Nagpal’s achievement not only fulfills his dream of becoming a professional player but also serves as inspiration for millions of others. While College Rivals will continue to empower college gamers, paving their path towards professional success in Season 2, the chosen players will also get a shot at playing for Orangutan as part of this strategic multi year partnership.

Ashwin Haryani, Country Head of Ampverse DMI, India revealed the importance of the partnership, “Ampverse DMI and Orangutan are embarking on a holistic partnership. They understood the concept of us building a talent hunt and making sure the top winners are given a platform to perform at a national and international stage. Beyond competition, our alliance also aims to enrich the esports ecosystem with an exclusive BGMI Team, a merchandise line and brand presence on the jersey of the team, every time they step out to play.”

As part of this partnership, Ampverse DMI and Orangutan will jointly co-own Rivals Ape X, a youth team beginning with a BGMI lineup that will include at least one player from every College Rivals season moving forward. Rivals Ape X, featuring some of the nation’s exciting up and coming players will aim to dazzle nationally and internationally in BGMI tournaments.

As part of the selection process, Orangutan had tried out all the 8 BGMI College Rivals Finalists, from Season 1 through a trial and Sahil was chosen on the basis of his in-game skills, game sense and overall team work.

Jai Shah, Co-Founder of Orangutan, expressed his enthusiasm about the initiative, “I am incredibly excited to introduce Rivals Ape X, our Academy Esports Team, in collaboration with Ampverse DMI and College Rivals. This collaboration marks a significant step in our mission to nurture and develop young, hungry talent, providing them with a bigger platform to showcase their skills. Together with Ampverse DMI, we aim to create a pathway for the next generation of esports champions and build a community where passion, skill, and ambition can thrive. Together, we’re setting the stage for the future of competitive gaming.”

College Rivals Season 2 will see 50+ colleges participating across 22 cities in both offline and online competition format. Any college student from Pan India can register and compete as the preliminary competitions have already been rolled out from July 15 along with diverse entertainment experiences tailored for college students including opportunities to become college ambassadors, purchase exclusive College Rivals merchandise and other interesting initiatives in a groundbreaking gaming format never seen before in India.

The competitions will take place for three gaming titles—BGMI, Valorant, and EA FC 24—with the grand finale being played in February, 2025. The winners from monthly qualifiers will compete in a grand finale for the ultimate battle and a prize pool of up to ₹50,00,000 along with the contract.

 

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eSports

NODWIN(R) Gaming ropes in Android as title partner for BGMS Season 3; to be powered by Garnier Men

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NODWIN® Gaming, South Asia’s leading gaming and esports company has officially announced Android as the Title Partner for India’s premier esports event Battlegrounds Mobile India Series (BGMS) Season 3. Additionally, the tournament will be Powered By leading men’s skincare brand, Garnier Men, marking the first time that Android and Garnier Men have partnered with an Indian esports tournament.

The high-voltage action of Android BGMS Season 3 is being broadcast on Star Sports for the third consecutive year as the nation’s best BGMI squads battle it out for glory. The entire tournament will be played on high-performance Android devices.

Moreover, Crunchyroll, the world’s largest destination for anime and manga, has also joined forces with Android BGMS Season 3 as the anime partner while energy drink brand Red Bull has been onboarded as the Official Energy Drink Partner of Android BGMS Season 3. By leveraging the prominence of the tournament, partners will aim to engage with its widespread audience, while also elevating the overall experience for players and fans alike.

Anshuman Wanchu General Manager, Marketing, Garnier, L’Oréal India said, “We are delighted to partner with the BGMI Masters Series 2024. It is an incredible opportunity for us as this collaboration allows us to connect with the dynamic and passionate gaming and youth community in a meaningful manner. As a brand committed to innovation and excellence, we look forward to some incredible showcases in season 3 of BGMS. With this partnership, we aim to empower gamers to elevate not only their game, but also their skin care routine, and inspire them to achieve their best, both in the arena as well as in their daily lives.”

The tournament has also continued its association with TVS Raider, the sporty commuter motorcycle from TVS Motor Company as the Official Mobility Partner and Philips OneBlade, the male grooming product of Philips India as the competition’s Official Styling Partner.

Commenting on the partnership, Aniruddha Haldar – Senior Vice President (Marketing) – Commuters, Media and Corporate Brand commented, “We at TVS Motor company had Collaborated previously with Nodwin Gaming to help us develop a close connect with the Gaming audience – we are pleased to share that this collaboration has helped us to gain brand love, better connect to the gaming audience during and post the previous season. We are back again to announce yet another collaboration with Nodwin Gaming for the BGMI Master Series 3, this is in view to further strengthen our connect and engagement with the gaming audience.”

“We are thrilled to announce our partnership with Android, Garnier Men and Redbull for the highly anticipated third season of BGMS. Having such notable partners whose vision for the growth and development of competitive gaming in India mirrors our own, is a tremendous asset. Their involvement not just highlights the emergence of esports as a mainstream sport but also the massive potential of youth engagement in this field. Together, we are confident in our ability to provide the necessary resources and visibility required to nurture and promote esports talent nationwide,” stated Akshat Rathee, Co-founder and Managing Director, NODWIN® Gaming.
The opening weekend of Android BGMS Season 3 was a resounding success, recording peak concurrent viewership exceeding 140,000 on digital platforms. The tournament commenced with a three-day Opener Week, where all 24 teams—20 invited and 4 qualified— were in action at the Android Arena in Chhatarpur, New Delhi.
The top 18 teams led by table toppers Team 8Bit, and consistent performers OneBlade, IQOO Soul and Team X Spark progressed to the League Week. They were joined by Team Z and Godlike Esports who were selected through audience voting from the bottom six. Meanwhile, Team Limra, Gujarat Tigers, Viking Esports and FS Esports were eliminated from the competition.

During the League Week from July 22 to August 4, the 20 teams will compete in the Survival Week and Domination League stages. The top 4 teams will secure direct qualification for the Finals, while the remaining 16 teams will participate in the playoffs scheduled for August 6 and 7. In the grand finale from August 9 to August 11, the top 12 teams from the Playoffs, along with the 4 best teams from the League Week, will compete to fight for the BGMS Season 3 title.

Adding a touch of innovation, this season also includes three exciting formats –

1) Powerplay (Active throughout the tournament) – Squads will earn double points for each finish they achieve in the first circle of every match.

2) Bounty (Active during the League Weeks – Survival week and Domination week) – The top 4 squads from the overall standings of League Week one, followed by the top four in each subsequent match will carry a bounty. Teams can earn bonus points only by eliminating an entire squad with bounty on them, with 10 points per squad.

3) Impact Player (Active during the weekend matches of the League Stage: July 27-28 and August 3-4) – The in-game leader (IGL) of each squad will conduct a random draw to designate an Impact Player who will earn double points for each finish they achieve. Teams will earn four points for every finish by the Impact Player during Powerplay.

“Going beyond traditional tournament formats, our new concepts are designed not only to heighten the intensity of the tournament for players and viewers but also to set a new standard for esports in India. These innovations aim to push the boundaries of competitive gameplay, and I am incredibly excited to see this new format unfold. Similar to traditional sports tournaments, Android BGMS Season 3 will produce memorable, nail-biting moments and games decided by the smallest of margins. We will witness players rise to the occasion, carrying their teams to victory,” added Akshat Rathee.

The teams who will be advancing to the League Week of Android BGMS Season 3 are as follows: Team 8Bit, OneBlade, IQOO Soul, Team X Spark, REVENANT, Entity, Gods Reign, Team Forever, Reckoning Esports, Carnival Gaming, Raven Esports, WSB GAMING, VASISTA ESPORTS, TEAM ORANGUTAN, Global Esports, MOGO eSports, Team Tamilas, Carpediem, Team Z and Godlike Esports.

Fans can catch all the action of Android BGMS Season 3 on Star Sports 2 (HD & SD) in English and Star Sports First in Hindi from Monday to Saturday from 7:00 PM. On league week Sundays, Playoffs and Finals, the broadcast will be from 6:30 PM. Fans will also have the option to switch to Tamil & Hindi commentary on SS2 using the blue button.

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