Asian Games 2018 that was held in Indonesia set a new milestone for eSports. For the first time, eSports was contested in that major event. Although it was only contested as a demonstration and not a medal eligible sport, it’s a good start for eSports to be featured in future events.
Because of the popularity, now another major event confirms that eSports are ready to be part of them. It is SEA Games 2019 that will be held in the Philippines next year, November 30 to December 10, 2019.
According to the Strait Times, eSports is listed in the 56 sports featured in the two-yearly event. This number of sports also marks a new record in SEA Games history since its first edition in Bangkok, 1959. The previous biggest SEA Games was in Indonesia, 2011 that featured 44 sports.
Here’s the complete list
CATEGORY 1 (COMPULSORY SPORTS): Athletics, aquatics
CATEGORY 2 (OLYMPIC AND ASIAN GAMES SPORTS):
Archery, badminton, baseball/softball, basketball, billiard sports, bowling, boxing, canoeing / traditional boat race, chess, cycling, dancesport, fencing, football, golf, gymnastics, handball, indoor hockey, ice hockey, ice skating, judo, karate, modern pentathlon, muay thai, pencak silat, polo, rowing, rugby sevens, sailing/windsurfing, sepak takraw, skateboarding, shooting, soft tennis, squash, surfing, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis, triathlon, volleyball, weightlifting, wrestling, wushu
CATEGORY 3 (REGIONAL/NEW SPORTS):
Arnis, e-sports, floorball, jujitsu, kickboxing, kurash, lawn bowling/petanque, netball, obstacle course, sambo/vovinam, underwater hockey, wakeboarding
But it’s not the final list. There is a possibility of only 51 sports that can make its way through the SEA Games 2019. Five of the rest, including eSports, surfing, skateboarding, kurash, and jiu-jitsu are still waiting for the confirmation. These sports have until December 7 to submit the application, including the endorsement either from International or Asian federations.
Because it’s still waiting for the endorsement, so there is no confirmation whether the eSports tournament will be medal eligible or still a demonstration sport like in Asian Games 2018 before. Also, there is still no confirmation about what game that will be contested in this event. Maybe we should wait until the closing date of submission which is on December 7.
The Asian Games just officially finished. This year featured eSports as an exhibition. Here is the Asian Games 2018 eSports recap.
With the inclusion of eSports in SEA Games 2019, we can hope that it will also be contested in a bigger event such as in the 2020 Olympic Games or as a medal eligible sport in 2022 Asian Games.
Edited by Devi