Virtus.pro is being threatened with disqualification from GAMERS GALAXY: Dota 2 International Series Dubai 2022
We have faced an unthinkable situation today: the orgs of GAMERS GALAXY: Dota 2 Invitational Series Dubai 2022 gathered the VP players, who arrived in Dubai by Nigma Galaxy SEA invitation, to enforce an ultimatum upon them. It goes like this: “Either your club issues a public statement regarding the situation in Ukraine, or you get dropped from the tournament.” They went as far as threatening to announce that our players have COVID (even though all the tests are negative), only to prevent them from playing. As an alternative they offered us a chance to renounce our tag and jerseys and play without affiliation to any particular club or country.
As far as we know, Nigma Galaxy SEA are in a dependent status themselves: their contractor in organizing GAMERS GALAXY is WePlay, and the Ukranians forced this decision upon them, threatening to sabotage the event. All of that despite the fact that the tournament is being hosted in UAE – the country that is remaining neutral regarding the situation in CIS.
Virtus.pro does not tolerate this behavior from WePlay and GAMERS GALAXY. We do not support any war there is or ever was: in Ukraine, Syria, Afghanistan, Yugoslavia or any other. But forcing someone to take a public stand does not lead to peace, but instead it drives people further away from each other and fuels hatred.
Virtus.pro never prohibited it’s players or employees from expressing their personal opinions. YEKINDAR, buster, OldBoy, BatulinS, m1loN, Jame and other players with huge fanbases are among those who exercised their right for freedom of speech. Our colleagues from RuHub, which is also an arm of ESforce Holding, took part in citizens’ meetings and expressed their thoughts through social media.
Our CEO Sergey Glamazda, a lot of our players and employees are citizens of Ukraine. Despite the enormous stress they are under right now, they want to keep at least the hope for peace, therefore they do not succumb to provocations from certain public figures in Esports. This is the only adequate behavior in current dire circumstances. Any spark could lead to a fire. Now more than ever we are grateful for the support of our fans, who understand and share the position of our club.
A lot of Russian/CIS clubs are under a lot of pressure right now. Some tournament operators are already conducting a witch hunt. We urge them to stop and not reflect on traditional sports, where politics run the show. Esports is beautiful in it’s diversity: people from different countries and of different descent could be playing together under one tag, and territorial affiliation is only measured in ping and timezones.
Virtus.pro will not fall for this intimidation. We won’t take off our jerseys and won’t tolerate this pressure. We speak for ourselves when we find it appropriate. Short-term interests and emotional outbursts are not what we base our public statements upon, but rather long-term strategy and the spirit of the club. And it says that Esports should be uniting people and continents.
Let’s make plays, not war.