Last December 2018, eSports was formally incorporated as a medal event in the upcoming 2019 Southeast Asian Games which will be held in Manila, Philippines. A total of six games will be played – two each for PC (DOTA 2 and StarCraft II), console (Tekken 7 and another game TBA), and mobile games (Arena of Valor and Mobile Legends).
With only a few months left to prepare, two teams are stepping up their preparation to be crowned as the games’ first-ever champions: Singapore and Malaysia.
ESports in Singapore
Last March 1st, 2019, Singapore Sports Hub launched its first professional eSports training facility. Its premier eSports organization, Team Flash, is expected to banner the country’s bid for the 2019 SEA Games. The team is also aiming to represent the country in the 2022 Asian Games to be held in Hangzhou, China.
As quoted by Danamic.com, Singapore Sports Hub Chief Commercial Officer Adam Firth said, “We are looking forward to the exciting plans with Team Flash which includes providing a conducive environment for emerging local talents especially in the world of eSports. Singapore Sports Hub will be the partner of choice to growing Singapore’s eSports industry and building future national stars.”
Team Flash CEO and Founder Terence Ting expressed his delight with their partnership with Singapore Sports Hub, “We are truly excited to partner Singapore Sports Hub to develop the country’s top eSports talent. Our strategic partnership will provide us with the essential infrastructure to execute our talent roadmap in this world-class venue with traditional athlete support for our eSports athletes.”
Last year alone, Singapore Sports Hub hosted the first Hyperplay which was co-organized by Riot Games and MTV, and the AOV Valor Cup, organized by the Singapore CyberSports Online Gaming Association (SCOGA). Team Flash has also enjoyed a lot of success last year especially at the EA Champions Cup where they beat top Asia-Pacific countries such as China, Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, and Indonesia. Its Arena of Valor team also came in 2nd at the World Championships in Bangkok last year. Overall, Team Flash reportedly took home an impressive USD$350,000+ in prize money across all titles in 2018.
Malaysia Qualifier Events
Meanwhile, Malaysia is currently conducting qualifier events, the winner of which will comprise its national boot camp for SEA Games 2019. According to lowyat.net, the boot camp will include the champion of DOTA 2 Grand Finals, top 4 players for StarCraft 2, and the top 2 players or teams from Arena of Valor, Mobile Legends, and Tekken 7.