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R65K up for grabs in national eSports competition

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Mind Sports South Africa (MSSA) is preparing to host its annual South African National Online School Championships for eSports tomorrow.

The event will see hundreds of school pupils competing in multi-player video game competitions, individually or as a team, in efforts to win a share of the R65 000 prize.

They will participate remotely through mobile devices and computers.

An affiliate of the South African Confederation of Sport and Olympic Committee, the MSSA is recognised by an Act of Parliament as the official national controlling body for mind sports, such as board games, eSports and wargames in SA.

According to a statement, MSSA’s School Online Championships will offer local players the opportunity to qualify for selection to the national squad and the local Protea eSports Team, which will attend the International eSports Federation’s (IESF’s) World Championships to be held in Bali in 2022.

MSSA says it has participated in every IESF World Championship since its inception in 2009. South African teams have over the years punched well above their weight and have never disgraced the country, it says.

eSports is the fastest-growing sport globally, with a current valuation of $1 billion and projections showing this number will almost double by the end of 2022.

In the education sector, more institutions are embracing eSports as part of their curriculum to harness its potential to teach scholars mental toughness, leadership skills, sportsmanship and communication skills, according to experts.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, eSports has slowly gained traction within SA’s learning sector, with schools such as Curro building a name for itself in the eSports community.

In March, Wits University’s Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct, in partnership with Ekasi Esports, unveiled the Ekasi Esports Days. The free events target aspiring local game developers and eSports fans, with the aim to put them in touch with the people they need to take their games further.

The titles to be played at IESF’s World Championships to be held in Bali later this year, and also at tomorrow’s championship, are Counter-Strike: GO, DotA 2, eFootball and Mobile Legends Bang Bang.

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15 Aug
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