The Largest Esports Championships Come to an End
The International Esports Federation (IESF) concluded the 14th World Esports Championships Finals, after ten days of thrilling competition, social programs, and a spectacular medal ceremony in Bali, Indonesia.
Over 600 players representing a historic 105 countries competed at the 14th WE Championships across six games: CS:GO, Dota 2, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, eFootball ™ 2023, Tekken 7, and PUBG Mobile. After the national and regional qualifiers, play-in stages, finals, and Grand Finals, 7 teams emerged triumphant, winning the $500,000 prize pool. Indonesia shocked the world by winning three of the seven titles and as a result becoming the 2022 WE Champion Nation.
The 492 hours of fierce competition currently has surpassed 10 million views from a record-breaking 497 matches, also reaching more than 3 million views on TikTok and 185.4 M impressions across other social media platforms. The final detailed media report has been commissioned to Nielsen to understand the full reach of the 53 clean feeds provided for localized broadcasting.
During the Closing Ceremony, the winners were crowned and all of the athletes were celebrated for their endurance and sportsmanship. The re-elected president of IESF Vlad Marinescu presented the champions with the WE Championships trophy and delivered closing remarks to conclude the historic event.
IESF President Vlad Marinescu said in his speech: “Congratulations to Indonesia for hosting the Esports Family and becoming the 2022 WE Champion Nation, and our gold medalists; Indonesia, Kazakhstan, North Macedonia, Pakistan, and Poland. We are grateful to experience the Bali hospitality and grateful to the nation for making History! IESF’s values of respect, friendship, and courage were on full display throughout these ten days of competition. We thank the athletes for their passion and human values displayed at the World Esports Championships Finals – you have broken barriers and borders displaying the union and unity between 105 competing nations, Bali we have made History!”
Indonesia’s passion for esports energized every competition, with emotional and enthusiastic athletes, families, and fans gathering together to cheer on all of the action, particularly the first-ever women’s CS:GO tournament, which proved to be a significant step towards creating more opportunities for women in esports and building a more inclusive World Esports Family.
At the conclusion of the Closing Ceremony, Bali officially handed over hosting rights to Iași, Romania, who will host the 15th WE Championships Finals in 2023. The next edition of IESF’s flagship event is set to feature over 130 nations and 800 athletes. This marks the second time Romania will host IESF’s flagship event.. Iași is the historical capital of Romania and is well-known as home to multiple prestigious universities. The city offers an exciting opportunity for IESF to engage with a new generation of esports fans and grow the World Esports Family.
IESF General Secretary Boban Totovski said: “Esports has the power to empower and unite people. The Flag Handover Ceremony from Bali to Iasi is a beautiful representation of this and IESF’s vision of a united World Esports. The culturally rich and youth-centric city is ready to welcome the World Esports Family. Iași has our full confidence and support to deliver an exceptional championship in 2023.”
Iași Deputy Mayor Daniel Juravle said: “Iasi is a dynamic and full of energy city. We have the youngest population in Romania, a creative youth passionate about everything esports entails. As a city that is the heart of culture and history in Romania and at the same time an IT&C hub in remarkable growth, we have all the prerequisites to organize the 15th edition of the WE Championships in a memorable way. We are excited to develop together the future of the esports industry with the International Esports Federations!”
BLAST partners with esports and video games betting platform unikrn
Esports entertainment company BLAST has announced a multi-year global partnership with unikrn, the most expansive video games and esports betting platform on the market.
As BLAST’s global partner, unikrn will be deeply embedded into the BLAST fan experience – including fan-led activations, social giveaways, broadcast integration, and physical / digital branding on the BLAST Premier tournament series and upcoming BLAST.tv Paris Major.
unikrn will also own the BLAST Picks segment, where the BLAST broadcast talent team predicts their winners from each day’s play, along with BLAST.tv PickEms whereby the Counter-Strike community have their say on predictions. More information on unikrn integration for the BLAST.tv Paris Major will be announced closer to the event kickoff.
unikrn has one of the most expansive video games and esports betting platforms on the market, with the online bookmaker being built for the new generation of gamers and esports fans. The unikrn esportsbook brings premier esports tournaments and the biggest sporting events into one convenient place, giving players more titles, more markets and more ways to level up the fun every day.
unikrn, available now in Brazil and Canada, with exception of Ontario, is built for the new generation of gamers and esports fans and aims to expand its global footprint throughout the BLAST partnership. The unikrn esportsbook brings premier esports tournaments and the biggest sporting events into one convenient place, giving players more titles, more markets and more ways to level up their fun every day. In addition to their traditional sportsbook and casino offering, the platform also offers players an opportunity to bet on their own skills with its UMode product, as well as Moneymatch, which gives players the opportunity to face off in public or private lobbies across a variety of different titles, with bragging rights and real money on the line.
Oliver Clarke, Commercial Director at BLAST, said: “We are delighted to welcome on board unikrn as our latest global partner. Their tailored esports and gaming offering means fans of the BLAST.tv Paris Major and BLAST Premier tournament series have a safe, secure and dedicated betting platform. 2023 is an exciting year for BLAST with more events happening than ever before and we are thrilled to have unikrn join us on this momentous journey.”
“BLAST is an epicenter of action for esports fans around the world and has produced some of the most memorable moments in the history of competitive Counter-Strike play,” said unikrn CEO Justin Dellario. “unikrn is built for these moments, when fans are looking for the deepest and best possible experience as they root on their favorite players and teams. We are thrilled to be BLAST’s partner, and to bring our world-class insights and betting opportunities to its millions of fans.”
BLAST Premier is a worldwide Counter-Strike tournament series where the best teams and biggest superstars fight it out for glory and a multi-million dollar prize pool. These tournaments attract tens-of-thousands of fans to live events in big arenas from London and Copenhagen to Miami and Sao Paulo, with millions more watching at home on broadcast in over 150 territories and in 25 different languages.
The BLAST.tv Paris Major is one of the most renowned and highly-regarded esports events in the calendar year, giving thousands of teams from all around the world an opportunity to compete for a £1.25 million prize pool, a chance to etch their names in Counter-Strike folklore and a shot at being named the best team in the world.
Viperio and Luckbox Join Forces for the BLAST EU RMR A
Viperio, the North East of England’s leading esports club, and Luckbox, an award-winning provider of licensed, real money esports betting, sports betting and casino games, announced a new partnership for Viperio’s run in the BLAST Paris Major EU RMR A in Copenhagen this April.
The partnership will see Luckbox become an official sponsor of Viperio as they take on the best teams in Europe for a chance at competing in the last ever Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Major in Paris later this year. As part of the sponsorship, Luckbox will feature as a new core sponsor on the Viperio jersey and social media accounts. The two organisations will also be collaborating on a series of new digital content, set to release in the coming weeks.
Viperio’s run in the BLAST Paris Major EU RMR A will take place live from the BLAST Studio in Copenhagen, April 6-9. Viperio’s first fixture is against global leading esports club FNATIC in a best of one series at 11:30 am BST (12:30 pm CEST).
“I’m happy to welcome Luckbox as an official sponsor ahead of our Counter-Strike team’s run in the upcoming Regional Major Raking event in Copenhagen this April. It’s great to have a market leader like Luckbox back our team as we hope to challenge some of the biggest names on the planet and try to qualify for the last ever Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Major,” Christopher Sword, Founder of Viperio, said.
“Viperio’s qualification to the RMR is really exciting. I’m a big Viperio fan, and having them join forces with Luckbox to create hype around the RMR and make memories for fans around the world is a great opportunity. I looked forward to seeing their journey on the path to Paris,” Dave Souza, Head of Communications at Luckbox, said.
Tekken star Abhinav Tejan and eFootball ace Ibrahim Gulrez crowned champions of NESC 2023; qualify for 15th World Esports Championships
Putting up stellar performances, notable Tekken athlete Abhinav Tejan and eFootball pro Ibrahim Gulrez triumphed in the finals of the National Esports Championships (NESC) 2023 organized by the Esports Federation of India (ESFI) and secured their berths at the global finals of the 15th World Esports Championships (WEC) which will take place in Iasi, Romania from August 24 – September 4, 2023.
The 15th World Esports Championship 2023 will have a whopping prize pool of $500,000 (INR 4.12 crore) and is set to be the largest edition of the tournament to date with at least 130 countries participating in eFootball, DOTA 2, Tekken7, Mobile Legends, PUBG: Mobile and CS:GO.
Despite starting from the loser bracket, Tejan who is a well-renowned name from the Tekken7 community proved his mettle against other top athletes of the country and will be representing India at the WEC for a record 6th time. The 29-year-old who won the South Asia regional finals of the Tekken World Tour 2022 last year defeated Loveneet in the grand finals by 3-2, 3-2.
“I have won a lot of tournaments in these past few years but winning the NESC 2023 was really important to me I had lost two times in it in the past 2 years. So, I wanted to make a comeback by winning it this year. Qualifying for the IESF finals in Romania had given me the chance to represent India for the 6th time in IESF finals which is personally a really proud moment. I am really looking forward to the finals where I will try my level best to get my country a medal this year,” said Abhinav Tejan.
Similar to Tejan, Gulrez also began his campaign from the loser bracket and displayed immense perseverance as well as high-quality gameplay to become the eFootball champion. He beat Pritesh Quinton Dsouza (bad_pritt) by winning the first round by 3-2 and the second round by 3-0 to seal his maiden qualification at the WEC.
“The feeling is really amazing. I have been trying to achieve this feat for the last couple of years and to finally get there feels amazing. My victory involved a mixture of hard work and some luck. One can only feel that happiness after trying so hard to win the competition for the last couple of seasons,” said Ibrahim Gulrez.
Alongside Tekken and eFootball, the esteemed national qualifiers were also organized for popular PC titles CS:GO and DOTA 2.
In CS:GO (Open), Team Orgless5 toppled the two-time NESC champions Team Wicked Gaming by winning the finals by 2-0. Comprising team captain Harsh Jain (f1redup), Jaspreet Singh (SpawN), Sadab Khan (SK wow^), Piyush Kalwania (clouda), Nikhil Kathe (N1kace) and substitute Omkar Thube (omkar09), the team was dominant throughout the tournament and produced scintillating performances against India’s leading CS:GO teams.
“Our motto to win the qualifiers was to trust the process, trust ourselves and trust our decisions. We worked extremely hard to defeat the country’s best CS:GO teams and become the champions. The World Esports Championships are very important for us and now we will prove ourselves in the regional qualifiers to qualify for the global finals as well,” said Harsh Jain, captain of Team Orgless5.
On the other hand, Team Top G comprising skipper Manav Kunte (mnz), Vishal Vernekar (HBK), Abhishek Yadav (Abhi-), Shahbaz Hussain (PinkMaN), Krish Gupta (Krish`) and substitute Jaikishan Malik (KaEL) prevailed in the finals of DOTA 2 by defeating Team Mob with a 2-0 score line in the finals. The squad’s notable players Vishal and Abhishek were also part of the historic DOTA 2 team that won the bronze medal at the Commonwealth Esports Championships in 2022.
“We are beyond ecstatic to win the DOTA 2 India Qualifiers and it is an honour for us to represent India on the international stage. We have put in countless hours of practice, analyzing every move, and strategizing every play to reach this point, and it’s an incredible feeling to see our hard work pay off. The team has an unbreakable bond and we know that we can achieve anything if we keep this synergy together. We would also like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to ESFI for providing us with this amazing opportunity to showcase our skills on a national platform and we promise to give our best shot to bring home the championship,” said Manav Kunte, captain of Team Top G.
Team Orgless5 and Top G will now be participating in the upcoming Asia regional qualifiers to qualify for the global finals of WEC 2023. The teams will first be competing in the South Asian qualifiers in online mode and upon qualifying will play the regional finals offline. The dates of the regional qualifiers will be announced by the International Federation soon.
One of the country’s top sports & Esports communication agencies, Artsmith-Concepts & Visions, will continue its support to the Esports Federation of India as their official communication partner. NESC23 was also supported by Upthrust (Event Partner), Inox (Multiplex Partner) & Hama (Training Partner)
The NESC’23 concluded on Monday, March 27 and witnessed a total participation of 275 athletes from all over the country.
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