KUCHING (July 28): “Nada” Nadrah Saufi is eagerly looking forward to compete in the esports competition at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England from Aug 1 to 8.
She is also gunning for more history as the first female gamer from Sarawak to win a medal in the DOTA 2 Women Division.
For the record, Nadrah, who is from Sibu, is the first Sarawakian named to the national esports squad for the competition, which will be organised as a demonstration event at the 22nd Commonwealth Games.
“I am looking forward to making a major breakthrough as this is my first major tournament thus far and my competitive career has just begun. I want to see how this will lead me,” she said.
Before this, she has taken part in mini esports tournaments and also those organised online.
Nadrah said the team captain “Aurora” Stephanie Lim Yuen Lii reached out to her personally after she was recommended to Stephanie by a few people when they were in need of a player for the team.
Her other teammates are “Istarx” Bette Chia Hoi Ping, “HG” Wong Wei Sian and “Shizuma” Tan Lyn Xhin.
“We are aiming for a podium finish but of course we will try to get the gold if possible,” she told The Borneo Post.
The 25-year old is currently undertaking a Bachelor of Technology Management course at University of Technology Sarawak in Sibu.
Nadrah started playing electronic sports (esports) after watching The Internationals in 2016.
“My friends were showing me the live stream of a match between Wings Gaming and Digital Chaos and I was intrigued by how the game was played so I decided to pick up on it.
“Then not long after that I made more friends throughout years of playing the game,” she related.
She chose esports because it helped her make friends from other countries who have the same interest.
“It helped to improve my social skills and confidence too. I also think that I am highly competitively driven so this game satisfies my needs to try and keep improving myself to be better.
“But apart from that, I do try to learn new skills from time to time and currently I am taking up 3D graphics design,” added Nadrah.
Her elder brother is very supportive of her decision to involve herself in esports but her father still has doubts about it as he tries to understand where I am coming from and heading to.
On another issue, Nadrah felt that not many female gamers in Sarawak get publicity because esports is still new.
“I think it is because there are not many female gamers who are interested in playing competitively, in addition there are not many female gamers to start a competition anyway.
“Furthermore, the esports scene in East Malaysia is still growing at a slow rate hence this is why there is not much exposure for players to have a head start,” she pointed out.