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ESL decides to ban organizations with Russian ties (but players could still be able to compete)

Teams which have ties with the Russian government won’t be able to play in the upcoming season of the ESL Pro League.

ESL decided to give a little more insight into their decision, which they made in wake of current events. “In the upcoming ESL Pro League, we made the decision that organizations with apparent ties to the Russian government, including individuals or organizations under alleged or confirmed EU sanctions related to the conflict, will not be allowed to be represented (currently we identified two teams – Virtus.pro and Gambit).”

To make sure players aren’t punished for something outside their control, ESL put down another rule which states they can still play under a neutral name. “We recognize that players are not complicit with this situation, and we do not think it is in the spirit of esports to impose sanctions on individual players. The Virtus.pro and Gambit players are therefore welcome to compete under a neutral name, without representing their country, organization or their teams’ sponsors on their clothing or otherwise.”

ESL isn’t the first one to make a move when it comes to banning out Russian organizations. Other tournament organizers such as BLAST have made similar actions. In other sports, such as football, the UEFA and FIFA have also made steps in excluding Russian teams from their competitions.

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Image Credits: ESL
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