Esports tournament organiser BLAST and South Asian esports company NODWIN Gaming have joined forces to launch Counter-Strike tournament series ‘The Draft’.
The Draft aims to provide Indian and Pakistani Counter-Strike teams with opportunities to compete against and alongside notable players in the scene.
The first iteration of BLAST’s and NODWIN Gaming‘s The Draft will take place throughout January and February 2024. The event will see teams from India and Pakistan compete for a share of its $50,000 (~£39,898) prize pool.
64 teams will compete across online qualifiers to determine the final 12 that will book their place in the group stage of The Draft. The top three teams from each group will compete at the Super Six LAN event taking place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Each of the six teams will be assigned a ‘Counter-Strike legend’ through a draft selection process. Information on the ‘legends’ taking part in The Draft was not disclosed.
To celebrate the launch of the draft, Indian esports organisation True Rippers Esports and Pakistani organisation Team WahWah will take part in a show match during the BLAST Premier World Final 2023 on December 16th.
The launch of The Draft marks BLAST’s entry into the South Asian esports market. The expansion comes after the tournament organiser secured a €12.7m (~£10.9m) investment to support its plans to expand on a global scale.
Faye Marlborough, Brand Director at BLAST, spoke on the deal: “We are delighted to be teaming up with NODWIN Gaming to launch The Draft, giving Indian and Pakistan Counter-Strike teams the chance of a lifetime to play with CS legends on a global stage.
“The Draft will not only act as an important pathway for aspiring players but will also provide an exciting tournament for global and local fans to enjoy.”