Chance for Sarawak gamers at SEA Games

Afiq (second left) presents a souvenir to Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah (second right) while Assistant Sports Minister Datuk Snowdan Lawan (right) and Youth and Sports Department Sarawak director Mohd Nizam Ismail look on during the Sarawak Esports Expo at CityOne Megamall recently.

KUCHING: The Sarawak Esports Association (SESA) are offering gamers in the state the golden opportunity to represent Malaysia in the Southeast Asia (SEA) Games in the Philippines from Nov 30 to Dec 11.

Its president Afiq Fadhli Narawi said SESA will be conducting a statewide selection next month, starting in Kuching from March 8 to 10.

“After Kuching, we will move to Sibu, Bintulu and Miri to select the best teams/individuals who will then compete in the Grand Finals of the Sesa Esports SEA Games State Selection (Tour of Sarawak) to be held either in Kuching or Miri.

“We are conducting the selection in four cities/towns because we want the best talented gamers to represent Sarawak in the national selection in Kuala Lumpur sometime in May,” Afiq told The Borneo Post yesterday.

He hoped to get at least one representative from Sarawak in the Malaysian team for the esports event which is included in the SEA Games for the first time.

“In other words, we are giving local talents the golden chance to make a historic appearance in esports competition in the SEA Games.

“Six games titles namely Dota 2, Arena of Valor and Mobile Legend (team) as well as Starcraft, Tekken 7 and NBA 2K19 (individual) will be contested and the top two teams/individuals shall represent Sarawak,” added Afiq.

He said, according to a report by the Business Insider, the biggest gaming tournaments in the
world are becoming comparable to the winnings in more well-established traditional sports tournaments.

“The International 2017 (Dota 2) offered US$24.7m after the US Open 2017 (tennis) US$50.4m while the prize purse for the Confederation Cup 2017 (football) was US$20m,” said Afiq.

Meanwhile, Afiq appealed for financial support from the corporate sector.

“The support from both the corporate sector and the Sarawak government is very vital to the development of esports and any other sports,” he said.

SESA was officially registered as a sports body with the Sports Commissioner’s Office Sarawak on April 17 last year and became an affiliate of the Esports Malaysia (ESM) on Jan 20 this year.

Presently, ESM has eight affiliates in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Sarawak, Kedah, Terengganu, Putrajaya, Penang and Negeri Sembilan.

According to the Youth and Sports Ministry, Sarawak is ranked number one in esports development among the eight affiliates.

For more details on the state selection, call selection committee special officer Romario Ong at 016-7226448.

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