A necessary decision to ensure player safety amidst COVID and political tensions.
The WePlay Academy League Season 3 Finals will now take place online due to COVID and geopolitical tensions in the region. The political situation is heating up between Russia and Ukraine presenting various problems in international travel as well as player safety.
The WePlay Academy League Season 3 Finals will take place over three days from February 11-13. The tournament will see four of the best Academy teams in CS: GO compete for an $88,000 prize pool. Initially, scheduled to take place at the WePlay Esports Arena in Kyiv, Ukraine, the tournament will now take place online.
Geopolitical tensions force event online
The political situation in the region is extremely tense with reports of an impending war between Russia and Ukraine. With several countries issuing travel advisories, international travel in and out of the country has become difficult.
The geopolitical issue on the Ukrainian borders, which has been going on for several weeks, causes a lot of concern. The uncontrolled epidemiological situation with COVID-19 in the world, the daily introduction of new restrictions on international transportation also make logistics especially difficult. The safety of tournament participants, our employees and all stakeholders was, is and will be our priority.
Ensuring player safety in such a situation is very difficult and WePlay has taken the responsible decision of moving the event online. In addition, the spike in COVID cases also presents difficulties in terms of international travel for the players and support staff.
Which teams will compete in the WePlay Academy League Season 3 Finals?
The WePlay Academy League Season 3 Finals will feature four teams after a grueling online stage that concluded on January 16. Here are the four teams that made it through to the finals:
- BIG Academy
- MOUZ NXT
- Astralis Talent
- Team Spirit Academy
The finals feature a double-elimination format where all matches are best-of-three series. MOUZ NXT won Season 2 after a 2-0 grand finals victory over NAVI Junior. The Season 3 Finals has a $88,000 prize pool with $45,000 going to the first-place team.
The WePlay Academy League has become the premier event for CS: GO Academy teams. Nurturing and developing young talent has helped strengthen the grass-roots scene in CS: GO. With several big organizations foraying into developing young talent, the scene has never been better for the youngsters looking to break into the scene.