Himanshu Chandnani: New Marketing/ Talent Consultant of Chemin Esports
(Esports news) New Delhi, 19 May’22: Poised to grow at a steady rate, Chemin Esports, the country’s leading esports firm has appointed Himanshu Chandnani as its Marketing & Talent Consultant. Chemin Esports, one of India’s leading esports organizations, is stoked to announce the appointment of Himanshu Chandnani. Himanshu will join the growing team of Chemin in the capacity of Marketing and talent consultant.
Himanshu’s appointment is expected to strengthen Chemin’s strategic talent hires and take the firm’s marketing endeavors to the next stage, in line with Chemin’s vision and long-term growth plan. Chandnani’s role at Chemin will mainly revolve around conceptualizing brand-building initiatives, creating new video IPs, planning the social media content calendar, and grooming Chemin’s talent.
Chemin Esports is one of the fastest-growing Esports organizations in India, the Indian Esports industry is very young, and Indian companies are attracting audience nationally and from the international markets. India has 500 million+ Gamers and sports fans.
Recently, Chemin had announced its collaboration with Rooter, a game streaming platform, to expand its reach by creating a strategic content partnership. Followed by in April, this year, Mountain Dew, the leading global beverage brand, became its official beverage partner.
Himanshu’s appointment have come at an opportune time when things are looking bright and upwards at Chemin. Armed with the rich experience and connections in the fields of gaming, esports, talent grooming, influencer marketing, marketing consultation, and creator marketing, Himanshu has a knowledge of what clicks and what doesn’t in the field of esports.
Speaking about his position and vision for Chemin, Himanshu said, “It is great to be associated with a growing company like Chemin, as the company is focusing on creating opportunities for evolving gamers, a platform for brands to reach-out to its audience, and definitely leading the position in the evolving industry, it just gives me the right mix of opportunities to leverage my experience and evolve in the growing industry”
Speaking on this move, Chemin’s Founder and Director, Ishan Varma, said "It’s a very favorable time for us, considering our team performance, the collaborations we had in the recent past, and the leading position we have achieved among the evolving Esports industry in India, it will be important to have the right people in our team. Himanshu’s arrival & his experience will strengthen our team’s confidence and allow us to spread our wings in the evolving Indian gaming industry."
Himanshu has been previously associated with Red Owl Gaming as Content & Esports Head, and Sportskeeda as the Esports Consultant, besides founding and co-founding websites and companies such as TGW Gaming, Cricping.com, and WeSocializeu.
Chemin Esports is looking to expand into the global industry: Ishan Verma
With esports becoming a medal event at the upcoming 2022 Asian Games, it has never been more important for aspiring esports players to have a pathway to become professionals, especially in India. In this exclusive interview, Ishan Verma, Founder and Director of Chemin Esports speaks about forming a talent incubator, the origins of the name, overcoming challenges, issues plaguing the esports industry in India, selection process for the Asian Games and long term goals.
Q 1) As Founder and Director of Chemin Esports, what motivated you to form a talent incubator and help esports athletes and content creators in the field of gaming? Since your background is in civil engineering, what made you switch to the esports industry?
It all started in the year 2020 during the Covid Pandemic. During the lockdown, I started following the Esports structure around the world. At that time, I would say the Indian Esports Industry was at a growing stage as compared to the global esports industry. Seeing a future potential in the Indian Esports Industry, I decided to invest into this and that’s when Chemin Esports was founded.
With the help of right guidance and training, I am sure we will have Indian Players competing at the Global Stage. I would say I have not switched from my Civil Engineering background as my core business is still into infrastructure. Being a passion and the untapped opportunity in the Indian Esports Industry has led to me investing into this as well.
Q 2) Why is it called ‘Chemin’ Esports? How does the name align with the company’s mission?
“Chemin” is a french word and it stands for “path”. We try to construct the right paths for esports athletes to have a successful career. Our goal is to act as a talent incubator for the upcoming esports athletes and help them to achieve their maximum potential and thus building a career into Esports.
Q 3) What are the challenges that you have faced as Founder and Director of Chemin Esports? How did you overcome them?
While the Indian Esports Industry is relatively new as compared to the Global Industry, this has seen a rapid rise in the pandemic period. With no esports policy framework and an Indian Esports Association, the industry is still unorganised. Before investing into this industry I had to do a lot of research. I studied about the Global Esports Industry and how they are functioning. I was still confused about Indian Esports but that’s when my business partner Mr. Diptanshu helped me a lot. We founded Chemin Esports together and in a short period of time we have grown to become one of the leading Esports Organisation currently active in India.
Also read: Our aim is to give opportunities to aspiring players: Sidhhant Agarwal
Q 4) According to you, what are some of the things that the esports industry in India lacks? How can they be rectified?
The Industry is still unorganised as there is no Esports Policy Framework and Indian Esports Association to guide the growth of Esports in India. The announcement of the formation of AVGC (Animation, Visual Effects, gaming and Comic) Task Force is a turning point for this industry. It will look at ways to build domestic capacity and also to serve the global demand in this sector.
With the inclusion of Esports in the upcoming Asian Games and Commonwealth Games, I am sure the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports under the guidance of Shri Anurag Thakur Ji will work towards the betterment of Indian Esports as well.
Q 5) According to you, what is the right process for the selection of the best talent in India to represent the country in the Asian Games as esports is a medal event?
For selection of the best talent, I feel there needs to be multiple tournaments in order to have in place a proper ranking of players. One Qualifier Tournament is not the right way to decide who the top player is. I am sure we will have such multiple tournaments in the lead up to the Asian Games before deciding who is the one going to represent India at the Global Stage.
Q 6) What are your long term goals with Chemin Esports? How do you plan to accomplish them?
Chemin Esports is definitely looking to expand into other Mobile as well as PC Games. Our focus as of now will be on the 8 Medal Events in the Asian Games like Hearthstone, Dota 2 & FIFA. The Indian Valorant scene is also on the rise and we are keeping an eye on the upcoming players and teams as well. We are waiting for the right opportunity. We are also looking at various opportunities to expand into the Global Esports Scene. We are exploring the various game titles available and the right team to invest into.
ESFI announces strong Indian Esports contingent for 2022 Asian Games
(Esports news) The Esports Federation of India (ESFI) announced a strong 18-member Indian contingent for the 2022 Asian Games where Esports will be a medal sport for the first time ever. Team Whoops sealed Asian games berth by defeating Team Avengers in the DOTA2 grand finals at ESFI’s National Esports Championships
Following eight days of high-voltage competition and nail-biting action in the ESFI’s National Esports Championship 2022 (NESC ’22), the winners have been selected to represent the country at the prestigious continental tournament, scheduled in Hangzhou, China from September 10-25. The NESC ’22 saw more than 200 esports athletes from across the country battling it out virtually in the five popular Esports titles—DOTA2, Hearthstone, FIFA22, Street Fighter V and League of Legends. The runners-up of single player titles—FIFA22, Street Fighter V and Hearthstone—will also be part of the Indian contingent.
“We are delighted with the energy of the national qualifiers. All the esports athletes gave everything to earn themselves a chance to represent the country. It’s great to see high-quality competition for each position. I congratulate all the athletes and wish them good luck for their preparations for the upcoming Asian Games,” said Mr. Lokesh Suji, Director ESFI & VP-Asian Esports Federation.
“We conducted NESC ’22 in a double elimination format in order to provide equal opportunity to each player or team. And we are thrilled to pick a strong Indian squad. I believe each of them will make the most of this opportunity and make India proud by bringing laurels to the country,” Suji added.
On the final day of the championships, Team Whoops emerged champions in DOTA2 and made the cut into the Indian contingent for the Asiad. A team, comprising veteran athletes like Moin Ejaz (Captain), Krish, Abhishek, Ketan, Darshan and Shubham, notched up a comprehensive 3-0 win against Team Avengers in the best-of-five final.
“I have been playing DOTA since my childhood days and now it’s a great honour for me to lead the Indian team in its maiden appearance at the Asian Games in this game. I would like to thank the federation [ESFI], who has been very supportive & professional. We will give our best to bring glory for the country in the Asiad” said elated Moin, skipper of Team Whoops.
The national champions and the runners-up, who will be part of the Indian contingent at the Asian Games 2022, are:
FIFA22 - Charanjot Singh and Karman Singh Tikka
Street Fighter V - Mayank Prajapati and Ayan Biswas
Hearthstone - Shikhar Choudhary and Karthik Varma
League of Legends - Team Temple of kings ( captain Akshaj Shenoy, Samarth Arvind Trivedi, Mihir Ranjan, Aditya Selvaraj, Aakash Shandilya and Sanindhya Malik)
DOTA 2 – Team Whoops (captain Moin Ejaz, Krish, Abhishek, Ketan, Darshan and Shubham)
The Indian contingent will now participate in the AESF’s Road to Asian Games-Regional Qualifiers (June-July, 2022), which will be conducted to decide seeding for the main event in China. ESFI continued its partnership with Artsmith- Concepts & Visions which has extended its support as the communication partner.
Also read: Shikhar, Karthik & Team Temple of Kings seal 2022 Asian Games spot
Shikhar, Karthik & Team Temple of Kings seal 2022 Asian Games spot
(Esports news) Hearthstone athletes Shikhar Choudhary, Karthik Varma and Team Temple of Kings produced staggering performances to secure themselves berth for the 2022 Asian Games by qualifying in titles at the Esports Federation of India’s (ESFI) National Esports Championships 2022 (NESC ’22). Shikhar produces sensational performance and dethroned 2018 Asian Games medalist Tirth Mehta in the semi-finals
While Shikhar outperformed Karthik Varma Vegesna 3-1 and 3-2 in the best-of-three final clash of Hearthstone, India’s one of the most popular League of Legends team, Temple of Kings, comprising of captain Akshaj Shenoy, Samarth Arvind Trivedi, Mihir Ranjan, Aditya Selvaraj, Aakash Shandilya and Sanindhya Malik, thrashed Team Coco Cats 3-0 comfortably in the best-of-five grand finals.
Shikhar showcased impressive skills and gameplay throughout the competition which also includes him causing the biggest upset of the tournament when he upstaged India’s only Asian Games medallist Tirth Mehta in the semi-finals, enroute to his title. Tirth had won the bronze medal at the 2018 Asian Games, where Esports was played as a demonstration event.
“This moment gives me a sense of accomplishment and honor that my diligence and commitment finally paid off. NESC’22 was an apex event of Hearthstone since it showcased all the titans of India. NESC’22 as I envisioned, was a tough grind, and winning it was a momentous achievement for me. Asian Games 2022 is going to be a huge test of my ability as all of my competitors are masters of their trade. Tirth got us the first medal in this title in the 2018 Asiad; I am going to put every ounce of energy this time into getting the gold medal for my country and continuing the medal run.
“I also want to acknowledge the Hearthstone India community for their support, and I believe that the road ahead will be a cumulative effort from the community. The Asiad will be a portentous evaluation of my skill but I have a firm belief in my zeal and hard work. And finally, thanks to ESFI for organising the qualifiers efficiently” said Shikhar Chaudhary after securing his debut berth for the Asian Games 2022,
In popular multiplayer online battle arena video game League of Legends, which witnessed participation of four top pro Indian teams, Akshaj-led Temple of kings lived up to the expectations and remained unbeaten before clinching the title.
“We are really happy that we made it out of really competitive national qualifiers for the tournament. It’s an honour to be part of Team India at a global level and represent India at the prestigious Asian Games. It’s a dream come true for all of us and the full credit for this feat goes to all my team members. A special note of thanks to ESFI for handling the qualifiers with such ease and providing the Indian MOBA community with such an amazing opportunity. Representing one’s country is not what everyone gets to do quite often, It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity; we look forward to getting a medal and making India proud,” Team India League of Legends captain Akshaj expressed his excitement ahead of the 2022 Asian Games.
ESFI is selecting the Team via the NESC ’22 to represent India at the 2022 Asian Games, scheduled in Hangzhou, China from September 10-25, as the Esports has been included as the medal sport for the first-time ever at the prestigious continental event. The second-placed athletes of FIFA, Street Fighter-V & Hearthstone will also be included in the Indian contingent. The on-going NESC ’22 has been played virtually, owing to the pandemic situation.
The winners of NESC ’22 will participate in the AESF’s Road to Asian Games – Regional Qualifiers (June-July, 2022), which are being held for seeding at the main event in China. ESFI continued its partnership with Artsmith- Concepts & Visions which will extend its support as the communication partner. ESFI has been streaming the thrilling action of the NESC ’22 live on its official YouTube channel. In DOTA 2, Team Whoops and Team Avengers will look to secure their Asian Games spot when they lock horns in the final today at 5 PM.
Following impressive title-winning triumphs at the National Esports Championship (NESC) 2022, below esports athletes/teams will represent India at the Asian Games 2022:
FIFA22 - Charanjot Singh and Karman Singh Tikka
Street Fighter V - Mayank Prajapati and Ayan Biswas
Hearthstone - Shikhar Choudhary and Karthik Varma
League of Legends - Team Temple of kings, comprising of captain Akshaj Shenoy, Samarth Arvind Trivedi, Mihir Ranjan, Aditya Selvaraj, Aakash Shandilya and Sanindhya Malik
DOTA 2 – The grand finals will be played today between Team Whoops and Team Avengers to secure their Asian Games berth
Charanjot and Mayank to represent India at 2022 Asian Games
(Esports news)New Delhi, April 23, 2022: Charanjot Singh, one of India’s star FIFA pros, and Street Fighter V athlete Mayank Prajapati produced sensational performances to secure themselves berth for the 2022 Asian Games after winning the titles at the Esports Federation of India’s (ESFI) National Esports Championships 2022 (NESC ’22) on Saturday. Charanjot outclassed Karman Singh with a score of 4-1 and 6-5 in a nail-biting FIFA22 grand finals. The Chandigarh resident Charanjot, who made headlines last year after winning the AIFF eFootball Challenge 2021, made his mark in the national qualifiers by entering the finals from the loser bracket before he defeated a strong opponent Karman, who made into the finals from the winner bracket. Karman Singh and Ayan Biswas, who stood second in the respective titles, will be included as substitutes in the Indian contingent at the prestigious multi-nation event
The on-going NESC ’22 has been played virtually due to the pandemic as the winners will be selected to represent the country at the upcoming Asian Games, scheduled in Hangzhou, China from September 10-25. ESFI has been conducting national qualifiers in a double elimination format for five popular Esports titles—DOTA 2, Hearthstone, FIFA22, Street Fighter V, and League of Legends. Esports will be played as a medal sport for the first time ever at the Asian Games.
After winning the NESC ’22 and securing himself a berth for the Asiad, Charanjot Singh expressed his feelings by saying, “I'm really happy and proud of myself for winning the NESC Fifa Qualifiers. It’s a great feeling to represent India in FIFA. Its sheer dedication and hard work resulted in getting the spot in the Asian Games 2022 and it allowed me a chance to bring the laurels to the country. The right mentality and proper grind towards the game make everything possible and a sure-shot path to get success. I can't wait to represent India at the Asian games and do my best to get that medal home.”
Meanwhile in the grand finals of Street Fighter V, Mayank aka “MiKeYROG” defeated Ayan Biswas by 3-0. Out of 15 players who registered for SFV, both Mayank and Ayan showed immense skills in their gameplay. The dominant between the two, Mayank secured his berth for the Asian Games 2022 by showcasing extraordinary skills. He was undefeated throughout the tournament. Delhi athlete Mayank is a popular face in the Indian fighting game community and got into Street Fighter in 2009.
“It’s a dream come true moment for me. I'm super excited for Asian Games 2022. This is really huge and it will definitely put the Indian FGC's name on the global map. This is a lifetime opportunity and I'm going to put every ounce of energy into getting the gold medal for my country. Also, a big thanks to ESFI for handling the qualifiers with such ease and providing Indian FGC with such an amazing opportunity” said elated Mayank Prajapati.
Later in the tournament, the Top-6 in the esports title Hearthstone—Tirth Mehta, Vinayak Subramanian, Karthik Varma Vegesna, Shikhar, Adarsh Shivam and Garv Arora, will battle it out for the title and also a place in the Indian contingent for the Asian Games. The quarter-finalists from the playoffs who will be fighting it out to compete in the DOTA 2 finals are Team Whoops, Serene Chaos, 1 Misal 3 Pav, Team Avengers, DMC, Digicont, Stylish Gamers and New Gods. As there are only four teams (Temple of Kings, Support No Vision, Pineapple Cake and Coco Cats) registered for esports title League of Legends, all four are directly clashing in the semi-finals of the national qualifiers.
The winners of NESC ’22 will participate in the AESF’s Road to Asian Games – Regional Qualifiers (June-July, 2022), which are being held for seeding at the main event in China. ESFI is live streaming the thrilling action of the NESC ’22 on its official YouTube channel. ESFI continued its partnership with Artsmith- Concepts & Visions which will extend its support as the communication partner.
ONE Esports appointed official media partner by Riot Games
(Esports news) ONE Esports, a subsidiary of ONE Championship™ (ONE), has entered into a partnership with Riot Games, and has been appointed Official Media Partner for the League of Legends: Wild Rift Champions SEA (WCS). This partnership between ONE Esports and Riot Games will involve multiple initiatives to promote fandom for the WCS Finals taking place from 23 April 2022 – 8 May 2022.
The WCS spans across competitive leagues in Asia Pacific, namely Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam. The four winning teams of the pan-regional WCS Finals will represent Asia Pacific in the Wild Rift Icons Global Championship taking place in Europe this summer, where participating teams will compete for a USD 200,000 prize pool.
As part of the partnership, ONE Esports will produce a Wild Rift esports video series titled WCS x ONE Presents: Rift Week! which comprises a five-part episode about WCS that will delight fans. This hosted series will feature tournament highlights, player interviews, fan interactions, and more. ONE Esports will also publish a series of articles covering the WCS. All editorial content will be available in English, Bahasa Indonesia, Tagalog, Thai, and Vietnamese, and published on the ONE Esports website, oneesports.gg.
“There is no question that Southeast Asia is at the forefront of the mobile esports boom. According to our research, 87% of gamers in Southeast Asia regularly engage in mobile gaming,” said James Lu, Chief Editor, ONE Esports. “Wild Rift, which brings the League of Legends experience to mobile, is set to become one of the hottest esports titles in the region, and we are proud to be selected as Official Media Partner for the WCS. We look forward to deepening our relationship with one of the most renowned game developers in the world, and we hope that fans enjoy what we have in store for them.”
"The WCS tournament this year has been characterized by some truly outstanding performances by local talent from around the Southeast Asia region. As the very best 11 teams come together to compete at the WCS Finals, we are thrilled to work with ONE Esports to bring specially curated WCS content to our passionate Southeast Asian fans. We look forward to bringing more meaningful ways for our fans to engage with the tournament and hope they enjoy the WCS x ONE Presents: Rift Week!" said Jem Loh, Head of Communications & Channels, APAC at Riot Games.
ESFI’s Asian games Esports qualifiers kicks off today
(Esports news) New Delhi, April 18, 2022: The much-awaited National Esports Championships 2022 (NESC ’22) is all set to kickstart today as the Esports Federation of India (ESFI) will be selecting the Indian contingent for the upcoming 2022 Asian Games. The nationals are being conducted for League of Legends, DOTA 2, Hearthstone, FIFA and Street Fighter V.
Under the ‘AESF Road to Asian Games’ program, the NESC ’22 will be conducted for five popular Esports titles—DOTA 2, Hearthstone, FIFA22, Street Fighter V, and League of Legends. More than 200 top esports athletes registered from all over India and the tournament will go on till April 24. Esports has been added as a medal sport at the 2022 Asian Games for the first time as the best performers of the NESC ’22 will get the opportunity to represent the country at the prestigious multi-nation event.
“The overwhelming response and the excitement we see among our esports players to be part of the Asian Games, gives us the confidence that they are aiming for something really big. They want to take national pride, give a tough challenge to the world and make the country proud. With their unmatched skills, Indian esports is expected to reach new heights. I wish the best for all the players for the upcoming tournament” said Mr Vinod Tiwari, President, Esports Federation of India & Director, Olympic Council of Asia – NOC & International Relations.
The NESC ’22 will be conducted online, owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, with the top athletes from across the country competing and showcasing their skills and strategies.
“We will now proceed with the tournaments witnessing 200 top esports athletes giving cut throat challenge in different categories to make it successfully to the Asian Games. It will be a gruelling event as the players will have to showcase their best strategy, skills and presence of mind, upon with the pressure to make the cut to be part of the Indian contingent for Asian Games. It will be an action packed and edge of the seat thrilling tournament for sure.” added Mr. Lokesh Suji, Director ESFI & VP-Asian Esports Federation.
DOTA 2 and League of Legends will see participation of 13 and four teams respectively with veteran athletes like Jeet Rajesh Kundra, Moin Ejaz and Samarth Trivedi will be seen competing. On the other hand, single-player titles
Hearthstone, FIFA22, Street Fighter V has will witness participation of 13, 60 and 16 athletes respectively as top stars including Tirth Mehta (Hearthstone), Siddh Chandarana and Lokmanyu (FIFA22) and Aditya Verma (SFV) will look to seal themselves Asian Games berth.
“I am really excited for the NESC ’22. I know all of us have been practicing and preparing at our best, and I am sure that whoever goes on to represent India at the Asian Games will aim for a podium finish this time” said Tirth Mehta, who had clinched bronze medal at 2018 Asian Games, where Esports was played as a demonstration event.
“Its great opportunity provided by ESFI to all athletes to give their best and earn a chance to represent India at Asian Games 2022. Being a professional FIFA player myself, it’s my dream like many others to win medal for the country and I’m looking forward to NESC ’22,” added popular Fifa athlete Lokmanyu
Aditya Mehta aka TheDarklord from Street Fighter V expressed his excitement and said "This is the biggest and the most important qualifier in the history of the Indian Fighting Game Community for SFV, it's about time to give it all! Shout out to ESFI for giving us this incredible opportunity"
ESFI continued its partnership with Artsmith- Concepts & Visions which will extend its support as the communication partner. The National Esports Championships will be streamed live from quarterfinal onwards on ESFI’s official YouTube as well as on the Facebook page.
Further details around national qualifiers are available on ESFI Discord server:
Also read: My goal is to represent India internationally: Tejas “Rexy” Kotian
EACC Spring 2022 to be hosted by ONE Esports from April 18th to 24th
(Esports news) The EACC Spring 2022 will continue the 2022 season of EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online 4 esports events. The inter-Asian esports tournament for EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online 4 will be hosted by Electronic Arts (“EA”) and the Official Tournament Organizer and Lead Agency, ONE Esports.
The Spring edition of the EACC will take place online from 18 April to 24 April and will be broadcast across China, Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam. The tournament will feature 12 teams competing over a week of intense competition for a total US$100,000 prize pool.
The EACC first began in 2014 as the EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online 3 Spearhead Invitational, being the first-ever international EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online esports competition. It later evolved into the Asian Cup in 2015, finally becoming the EA Champions Cup in 2016. Since then, it has brought together the best professional FIFA Online 4 teams twice a year, in a battle to become the champions of Asia.
EACC Spring 2022 comes with a new format this year. Three teams from each participating country – China, Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam – each consisting of three to four players, will battle it out in a two-sided double-elimination styled bracket. During this double-elimination bracket, each matchup will be played in a Best-of-5 format, meaning that teams must win at least three games out of the maximum five games played to advance.
Unlike previous seasons, this season’s Best-of-5 format will no longer include a “winner stays”-rule for the selection of the representing athletes. Instead, both teams in the matchup will nominate a different individual athlete for each of the first three games. For the optionally required games four and five, the athletes from games one, two, and three can be re-nominated. As a result, a single athlete can only compete in a maximum of two games during a single matchup between two EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online 4 teams, putting a greater focus on the performance and tactics of the entire team.
My goal is to represent India internationally: Tejas “Rexy” Kotian
Currently playing for Enigma Gaming, Tejas “Rexy” Kotian is a former Counter Strike: Global Offensive player who currently plays Valorant. Having previously represented the likes of Noble India, XTZ Esports, Samurai Esports and Godlike Esports, the Indian esports athlete has enjoyed a successful career so far, winning a number of tournaments and is now aiming to represent the country internationally.
In this exclusive interview, Tejas “Rexy” Kotian speaks about his journey so far, memorable achievements, experiences at various teams, advice to aspiring esports players, training regime, overcoming challenges and future goals.
Q 1) How did your journey in esports begin? What made you stop playing Counter-Strike: Global Offensive?
My journey in Esports was completely random and I never intended to enter into professional gaming when I started playing. I started off with local cafe and college tournaments with my cafe friends and through this I got my biggest break. There was this one small cafe tournament which we won by defeating the best team in India at that time and this made me realise that I am pretty good at this game and can give a tough fight to the highest level of teams.
I had played Counter Strike Global Offensive professionally for 3 years. I loved and enjoyed playing CS:GO but it did not have that much of an audience and there was only a limited amount of money which one could make out of the game. There were only a couple of organisations at that time for CS:GO which made it very hard for an underdog team to get comfortable and give their 100%. At one point there was no return from playing the game and I just decided it is not worth playing it anymore. I decided to quit CS:GO altogether and try something else in my life. It was lucky that Valorant was released a month later after my retirement from CS:GO.
Q 2) You came first in three different tournaments last year, which one has been the most memorable achievement in your career and why?
As a new team I am happy with the results we had in the start. I think the most memorable achievement would be the PENTA Tournament. We defeated Team XO which was one of the best teams in India at that time. We were 0-2 down in the bo5 finals. Even though we were down our mindset and mentality was never low and negative and we managed to win that series 3-2. It was not a very big tournament but the mindset we had as a team was very nice and it is very hard to keep that mindset in a bo5 and that too in finals.
Q 3) You have previously played at Noble India, XTZ Esports, Samurai Esports and Godlike Esports in the past. How was your experience at those teams compared to Enigma Gaming?
Apart from Godlike Esports I have had very bad experiences with all these previous organisations. Every organisation had bad elements which led to me/players being unhappy. I don't have to say much about what was wrong with them as some of the stories are already out in the community. Godlike Esports was a very good organisation with a very helpful and kind management team but unluckily it didn't work out between the players. Compared to these organisations, I’m very happy with Enigma Gaming as the management is very helpful and the players here have the same mindset when it comes to playing and being there for each other. Enigma Gaming has a plan with which they are looking forward to going with which will help the players to stay in the long run.
Q 4) What is your training regime? What would be your advice to aspiring esports players in India?
My training regime is pretty simple. I just dedicate 1 hour of my day to aim. I do 3 deathmatches for 30 mins and 30mins of range. Aim routine is very important to keep your muscle memory up to date. I feel one should make their own aim routine instead of copying any other player. Aim routine is different for different players and you should make one which is suitable for your muscle memory.
The main point that I would say to aspiring Esports players in India would be to never quit and to keep on playing all the tournaments. The results don't matter at the early stages of your career, only experience does. Once you showcase your skills in front of the audience and you are good enough then you will get an opportunity one day. You just have to be patient and be ready when that day comes.
Q 5) What are some of the challenges you have faced in your journey? How did you overcome them?
The main challenge I faced in my journey was the support of my parents when it came to playing video games. They still don't support me and want me to get a real job or go for my further studies. Proving them that I can take care of myself with gaming was the toughest thing. They gave me a year to prove myself in the gaming industry after I completed my Engineering, and only when I started earning on a monthly basis did they agree to give me more time as I practically started living on my own and was not dependent on my parents anymore.
Q 6) What are your future goals? How are you planning to achieve them?
One of my goals is to represent India on an international level. We had worked extremely hard in the last VCC but we failed to deliver when it mattered the most. We used to practise 12 hours a day with all the scrims, theory and individual grind. We have 2 more VCC coming up this year and we are going to practise much harder and we will bounce back stronger. We know we have that winning team and very positive mindset, we just have to showcase it. I personally would be grinding much more and creating many more plays which will make the opponents uncomfortable.
Also read: My goal is to make India an international force in combat sports
My goal is to win an International trophy - Karan "Excali" Mhaswadkar
Currently playing for Enigma Gaming, 24 year old Karan "Excali" Mhaswadkar is an Indian Valorant player who has also played Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Having represented teams like Team Mahi, Samurai Esports and Team XO in the past, he is now setting his sights on making a mark at the international stage after a successful few years domestically.
In this exclusive interview with SPOGO, Excali speaks about his introduction to esports, switching to Valorant, memorable achievements, overcoming challenges, training regime and his future goals.
Q 1) When were you first introduced to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and what ultimately made you retire from the game when you played for Entity Gaming?
My friend introduced me to the game Counter Strike 1.6. I played that game casually for a while and then later in 2012 CS:GO was released. I was playing that game the whole day and ultimately I decided to go pro because I was good enough to compete against the best in our region. The game in later stages got stagnant and the competition in our region was not that good compared to any other FPS game which made me lose my interest in CS:GO. And as soon as Valorant was released in the beta version, I knew this is what I want to play, this is where I want to compete to be the best and here I am.
Q 2) What motivated you to switch to Valorant and how easy/difficult was the transition? What is it about the game that you enjoy?
As I mentioned earlier I was slowly losing interest in playing CS:GO because of the game dynamics and also the lack of support from the organisations. My transition was not that difficult because I had clear goals in my mind about Valorant and I kept working for it since day 1. Valorant has all of those strategic aspects, and more thanks to its agents with unique abilities. It’s one thing to have flashes and smokes in a fight, and another to have a turret you can deploy or an ice wall you can make to hold map territories.
Q 3) The last few years have been particularly successful for you, since you came first in six different tournaments. What is the most memorable achievement of your career and why?
Dominating other teams throughout the 2020 year was something which no other team has ever done in our region till date. The biggest achievement for me back then was finishing 3rd in an International event (PvP Invitational). My most memorable achievement in my gaming career was when we beat an International team on LAN in Shanghai because that was something no one has done. The support and love we got from the audience was immense. That was the most memorable achievement for now but I’m still here to create more of them in future.
Q 4) As an esports athlete in India, what are the various challenges that you have faced in your journey? How did you overcome them?
For me I think my journey was comparatively smooth until I decided to leave my first Valorant team. The following 6-7 months were pretty rough for me and my mental health because of all the trolls and hate I was getting for it but I had to be strong mentally to overcome this. I knew that as soon as I got back to my winning ways, it was all going to fade out slowly. I’m not up there fully, but I’m slowly getting there and with time I think I’ll be the best out there again.
Q 5) How do you prepare yourself before a big tournament? What is your training regime like?
Before big tournament matches, I keep my mind fresh first of all because you cannot go into a big match with 10 other things in your mind. I personally think rather than aim and strategize as Valorant is more of a mental game, if you’re confident enough no one can beat you. My training regime consists of few deathmatches and training grounds, nothing too special.
Q 6) What are your goals for the future? How do you plan to accomplish them?
My goal is to win an International trophy. And I’ve been working very hard for it with my teammates and the coach. We have individual sessions with our coach and with the whole team as soon as our practice session ends. We try to be better each day. I think the way we are practising right now, we might be able to achieve that goal sooner or later.
EA appoint One Esports as Official Tournament Organizer for EACC 2022
(Esports news) One Esports has been named by Electronic Arts as Official Tournament Organizer and Lead Agency for the EACC 2022, an inter-Asian esports tournament for EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online 4. Two EACC’s will be held in Q2 and Q3 of this year, EACC Spring 2022 and EACC Summer 2022 with both featuring 12 teams across China, Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam.
The EACC Spring will take place from 18-24 April 2022 and teams will compete over a week of intense competition. As part of the agreement, ONE Esports will provide full event execution and live production with players and talent for both EACCs in English, Korean, Mandarin, Thai, and Vietnamese. ONE Esports will also collaborate with EA to produce exciting content and comprehensive coverage of the tournaments for fans. The content will be available in local languages and published on the ONE Esports website, oneesports.gg, and across its social media channels.
“We know that a significant portion of ONE Esports fans are passionate about the EA SPORTS™ FIFA franchise. We are excited to execute and bring an action-packed series of tournaments to this passionate and engaged EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online 4 community across Asia, as well as tell and amplify the stories of their esports heroes,” said Jason Teo, Vice President of Business Development, ONE Esports.
“ONE Esports has a proven track record for celebrating esports heroes and enhancing the competitive gaming global experience for players and viewers,” said Piotr Pilich, Deputy Commissioner, EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online. “We are thrilled to partner with ONE Esports as we enhance the love for football through EA SPORTS™ FIFA Online 4 competitive gaming entertainment.”
NESC2022 to determine Indian contingent for 2022 Asian Games
(Esports news) The Esports Federation of India (ESFI) will be conducting the National Esports Championships 2022 (NESC2022), under the "AESF Road to Asian Games" program, beginning from April 4 to select the Indian esports contingent for the upcoming Asian Games.
With esports included as the medal event for the first time ever at the 2022 Asian Games, to be held in Hangzhou, China from September 10-25, the registrations are now open for the NESC 2022. The last date for the registration will be April 1. Popular games DOTA 2, Hearthstone, FIFA22, Street Fighter V and League of Legends will be part of the national championships as professional esports athletes as well as enthusiasts from across the country can register themselves and it is open for all with no restriction on gender. The tournament will be conducted over a period of 15 to 20 days.
Owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, the national qualifiers will be held virtually with top athletes from across the country competing and showcasing their skills and strategies. For titles like AOV (Asian Games Version) and PUBG Mobile (Asian Games Version), ESFI is waiting for clarity/permissions from the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) as both titles are banned in India as well as in many other Asian countries.
Talking about the announcement, Mr Vinod Tiwari, President, Esports Federation of India & Director, Olympic Council of Asia – NOC & International Relations said “Finally the time has come for which the whole Indian esports ecosystem was waiting for. We are extremely thrilled and excited to announce NESC 2022 i.e. the national qualifiers to select the Indian esports contingent for the upcoming Asian Games 2022. It is a matter of pride for our esports athletes to not only showcase their talent and skills but also make the country proud by winning the laurels for the nation.”
“We urge all esports athletes to participate in large numbers and become a part of this historical event where esports is making its debut as a medal event in Asian Games. As esports is now included in Commonwealth Championships, IESF World Championships and expected to be included in Olympics in the near future, we are committed to develop, support and grow the esports ecosystem in India,” added Mr. Lokesh Suji, Director ESFI & VP-Asian Esports Federation.
The winners of NESC ’22 will participate in the AESF’s Road to Asian Games – Regional Qualifiers (June-July, 2022), which are being held for seeding at the main event in China. Irrespective of the outcome of the Regional Qualifiers, all players will compete at the Main event at Asian Games, China.
Mr. Sebastian Lau, Director General, Asian Esports Federation also extended his best wishes for the Indian esports talents: “I would like to share my sincere congratulations to ESFI team on the launch of their Registration Program for the AESF RDAG - National Team Selection Program the NESC 2022 today. This is an incredible beginning and milestone for India’s esports program and I look forward to seeing the best Indian esports talents in our RDAG Regionals and Final in Hangzhou this September. I wish the best of luck to all participants."
In the last Asian Games held in 2018 when Esports was included as a demonstration event, India’s Tirth Mehta clinched the bronze medal in Hearthstone.
The National Esports Championships will be streamed live from the quarterfinals on ESFI’s official YouTube & Twitch channel as well as on the Facebook page. Also, ESFI is in talks with other streaming partners which will be announced once it is finalized.
Link and other details for registration are available on ESFI Discord server: https://discord.gg/esfi
My goal is to be the best and dominate with my team: Enigma Saggy
Playing for Enigma Gaming, 18 year old Sagar Kumar, a.k.a Saggy has been making a name for himself by playing BGMI and is aiming to become one of the best esports athletes in the country in the foreseeable future. In this exclusive interview, he speaks about his professional journey, proudest moments in his career, expectations from the BGMI majors, overcoming challenges and future goals.
Q 1) Please tell us about your journey as an esports athlete and what motivated you to take it up professionally?
Everyone starts from scratch and the struggle is everywhere. I started playing the game with friends for fun and I used to watch Mortal and other streamers playing scrims and different tournaments. When the 1st PMIS was organized, that was the time when I created my squad with my friends and I haven’t stopped playing since then. We were defeated in tournaments many times but never lost hope of becoming the best player in India. After my ESL finals, I was excited as it was the biggest event and it was going to be a LAN event. Unfortunately, the game was banned and we were very disheartened. When the news came that the ban was lifted two months later, I created my team and till today I am playing with the same team and hustling for trophies.
After Skyesports 3.0 and the game getting unbanned, there was a ray of hope that I can play the game professionally and that there was a future playing mobile games. That’s when I received an offer from Enigma Gaming and I said yes without thinking. This motivates me the most as well as the fact that I have created my own name in the community with my gameplay and style.
Q 2) At just 18 years of age, you’re already in the top 5 in the MVP list for highest frags. Is that your proudest achievement in your career so far? What are some of the other accomplishments that are memorable for you?
I was a bit sad that I hadn't been crowned MVP but I was in the top 5 consistently. After all, proving yourself in front of everyone is a proud moment for anyone. In the near future, my team and I will be recognised as the most dominant team in India and that will be our biggest achievement. My most memorable moment was when my father called me after seeing my interview in Bgis.
Q 3) What are your expectations from the BGMI majors taking place this year?
This year will change the scene as there are three major tournaments in a row. Enigma will surely dominate the scene and these three tournaments are when we will prove to ourselves that we are one of India’s best teams. We are planning to win all three majors but I’m confident that at least one trophy will be ours.
Q 4) What are some of the challenges you have faced as an esports athlete? How did you overcome them?
The biggest challenge that I faced was the pressure from my family as I’m in college and by being an athlete, I have to miss my classes often to stay in the bootcamp. My family wants me to go to college and not focus on my esports career and my college also demands 75% attendance. Things are going well so far and I’m managing my education and career and I hope it will continue to do so in the future.
Q 5) What are your future short and long term goals in esports? How do you plan to achieve them?
My goal is to be the best in the future. My team and I will surely dominate the scene. We will work hard and grind everyday till we reach the top!
Penta Esports and FEAI to build a better Indian Esports Ecosystem
(Esports news) Gaming and esports company Penta Esports has announced its partnership with the Federation of Electronic Sports Associations India (FEAI), the apex national body for Esports in India to promote grassroots esports in India. FEAI is taking Esports to every corner of India and this partnership provides massive impetus towards broad basing India’s Esports ecosystem. FEAI has been leading a strong policy intervention, anchored through the policies of the Government of India, towards formalisation of the Esports and allied industries. With FEAI’s strong emphasis on development of esports across every Indian state through regional chapters, the partnership with Penta esports will accelerate structured development of esports in India.
With this partnership, Penta Esports along with FEAI will take esports to every corner of India through tournaments, leagues, campaigns and initiatives around awareness on esports being a viable career option. A major point of focus of these offerings would be college and university level engagement.
Penta Esports, Founder & CEO, Anurag Khurana said “A big area of focus at Penta Esports has always been grassroots esports and our vision to usher growth in this space is aligned with FEAI. This collaboration will provide an impetus to our efforts and we can reach out to more aspiring esports athletes by leveraging FEAI and its strong associations across the country.”
Mr. Vaibhav Dange, Founding Director & Member, Federation of Electronic Sports Associations India said, “As the apex national body for Esports in India, we seek to facilitate a policy-centred esports outlook that aims to address a strong talent development ecosystem that covers the spectrum of talent, businesses, job creation, education, and revenue generation for India with regional centres of excellence. The overall ecosystem has to be strengthened for it and we are excited about the potential of our association with Penta Esports in rapidly accelerating the growth of esports across the country.
Founded by industry veterans Anurag Khurana, Kiran Noojibail and Akshay Paul, Penta Esports aims to disrupt the ecosystem in India with a holistic approach towards the sector, including leagues, tournaments, content and much more.
Orangutan Gaming and Fanclash aim to bring evolution to esports
(Esports news) Orangutan Gaming has announced their very first partnership with esports trailblazer FanClash, Asia’s largest esports fantasy platform. In the last nine months, Orangutan Gaming has seen tremendous growth in both its esports teams - one in FreeFire and the other in BattleGrounds Mobile India. The growth FanClash has witnessed since the launch of the product in February 2021 has been phenomenal - having organized over 50,000 fantasy contests and distributed over Rs 50 lakhs in winnings.
Esports is evolving at every stage and this partnership brings the next big evolution in the world of esports - offering spectacular engagement options for fans. Through this first of its kind partnership of a fantasy app platform with a Professional esports team, fan engagement takes a giant leap from fans watching the pro athletes play the games to fans being able to win big by taking part in fantasy contests.
Orangutan also recently signed their first female esports athlete, Swayambika ‘Sway’ Sachar which shows their drive to bring an evolution within and beyond their organization by including, uplifting and supporting the communities they serve.
Khushali Dodia, Head of Marketing at Orangutan Gaming Pvt Ltd said, “Esports has shown tremendous potential and has gained a massive following, both in India and on a global level. We are constantly striving to ensure that our fans are at the core of everything we do and our partnership with FanClash enables us to do just that. We are looking forward to this collaboration and working on a more immersive and engaging experience for our fans.”
Archana Sangaram Head of Marketing at FanClash said, “From fantasy leagues and tournaments to the latest happenings in the gaming world, FanClash is involved in every step of gamers’ E-sport fandom journey. We strive to revolutionize esports fans’ experience by providing thrilling, fair, and accessible gameplay. Our partnership with Orangutan is a step in this direction and we are looking forward to delight Orangutan’s fans”.