South Africa makes push to enter Overwatch World Cup

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The local Overwatch community is pulling together in a collective effort to send a team to the biggest tournament for the highly popular esport.

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Following a recent announcement posted to the official Overwatch website, Blizzard has unveiled some slight changes to their World Cup procedure. In a bid to see a wider field of national representation, Blizzard has revealed the new qualification system that allows countries a little more autonomy in being involved in the behemoth esports event. For the first time in Overwatch World Cup history, competitors can submit themselves for potential team roles and based on the endorsement of fellow players from the same country, be included in the Competition Committee, taking on roles such as team manager or coach.

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Phase 1 of the process will see players nominating themselves for positions and see supporters vote for them to take ownership of their desired role. Ya’ll can vote for as many people, all that matters is that word gets out there to support and endorse these players. If Blizzard is unhappy with the amount of support being shown, or nominees have not received enough endorsements, they will be removed from the pool entirely. So click on the Google Doc form here and endorse away!

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Following this process, Phase 2 the individuals with the most endorsements will be revealed and supporters will be able to cast one final vote for the person they’d like to see take the position of their choice. The selected committee will then proceed into Phase 3 which will see them gathering the best of the best through a series of try-outs to create the best possible team for the play-offs. Of the approved players, 7 will be selected to travel to Blizzcon and compete in the Overwatch World Cup.

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South African Overwatch players have been incredibly active on Twitter, joining in to throw their names into the pool for potential committee members. By placing the power to vote for and approve committees into the hands of the community, Blizzard is hoping to enable countries that previously have been under-represented at their larger esports events. Sam “Tech Girl” Wright, a prominent Overwatch player and Streamer in the local community, had this to say regarding this voting process:

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“I think, for now, we have A LOT of stairs to climb before we can even get to the World Cup. Our region is historically smaller with a much smaller pool of top tier players. In the past we’ve been excluded from the World Cup for this very reason. We’ll need to prove that we have the necessary support structures in place to ensure we can fulfil Blizzard’s committee obligations and only then will we potentially be able to select a team. From there, we’ll need to find the monetary support to get that team to Los Angeles for the World Cup (this will need to be funded by the team).”

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“For me, personally, I really believe that international exposure to competition benefits the competitive community. We’re an isolated region so any chance to play with the rest of the world is exciting. The Overwatch World Cup is the perfect chance to give our best players exposure at a top level and bringing that exposure home only helps improve the local esports scene. Also our players, given the chance, can perform. Bravado’s COD team and past CSGO team have proven that.

The more players travelling to international tournaments, the more professional experience they bring back home and we start raising the level at which players and role players in the local esports scene operate at. Critical Hit has been vocal in the past about the less than lovely behaviour of the ZA esports scene at times – events like this change that because the experience given to top tier players comes home with them and they are able to teach others what they’ve learnt (both in and out of game). If there is an opportunity for players to have that incredible experience of playing on the international stage and against their heroes, I’d love to find a way for us to make it possible. For them and for the community who continually supports Overwatch”.

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The Google Doc containing the URLs for the individuals can be found here and should be continuously updated with new players. I, Brad “Rabobi” Lang, think as a community we should do our best to support our local players and their efforts to compete on a global stage.

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Last Updated: May 17, 2019

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