The quest for esports gold starts with the formation of the team to represent the country in the 30th Southeast Asian games. For this, the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Esports Union (PSEU) has been tasked by the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) to create Sibol, the country’s national esports team.
Sibol will be competing in all six titles featured in the esports event of the 30th Southeast Asian Games, which include Dota 2, StarCraft II, Hearthstone, Arena of Valor, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, and Tekken 7. With the help of Razer, the official esports partner of the games, this will be the first time in history that esports is included as a medaled sport in any international gaming event.
Several outstanding Filipino esports athletes will be directly invited into the team’s training pool. The roster of directly invited players is the following:
Carlo “Kuku” Palad
Timothy John “Tims” Randrup
Kim “Gabbi” Santos
Armel “Armel” Tabios
Nico “Eyyou” Barcelon
Djardel Jicko “DJ” Mampusti
Marc Polo Luis “Raven” Fausto
Abed Azel “Abed” Yusop
Michael “ninjaboogie” Ross Jr.
Ryan Jay “Bimbo” Qui
Caviar “Enderr” Acampado
Andreij Hosea “Doujin” Albar
Alexandre Gabrielle “AK” Laverez
Jacinta “Jia” Dee
Euneil “Staz” Javiñas
Arena of Valor
Kevin Kio “Gambit” Dizon
Jeremiah “1717” Camarillo
Jevan Lorenzo “Bents” Delos Santos
Lawrence “Rubixx” Gatmaitan
Miguel Klarenz “Miggie” Banaag
Mobile Legends: Bang Bang
Carlito “Ribo” Ribo
Yuji “Yuji” Aizawa
Renz Carlo “Pein” Reyes
Ralph Mico “Coco” Sampang
Ephraim Jueinno “Ejhay” Sambrano
Jeniel “Haze” Bata-Anon
Erwin “Yakou” Magno
Marc Danielle “Dee” San Luis
Angelo Kyle “Pheww” Arcangel
Lester “Tets” Santos
Mark “Dysania” Cruz
Gerardo “Eson” Mark Jayson
Jeff Franklin “Jeffqt4ever” Anaya
Allan Sancio “Lusty” Castromayor
Jason Rafael “Jay” Torculas
Ashleymarco “Killuash” Cruz
Kyle “Ryo” Berceño
Joining them in the Sibol training pool are individuals who will prove victorious in the upcoming open qualifiers. Any Filipino citizen over the age of 13 can join the said qualifier.
The registration, as well as other relevant information, can be found through these links:
The qualifiers for Dota 2, Hearthstone, and Starcraft 2 will be done on August 10-11, and registration is open until August 7. Meanwhile, the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang qualifier will be held on August 14-16, and the Arena of Valor and Tekken 7 qualifiers will be on August 17-18. The registration is open until August 11 for the latter games. For selection purposes, the top two teams from Dota 2, the top two players from Hearthstone, and the top three players from StarCraft II will be included in the Sibol training pool. On the second batch of qualifiers, the top two teams from Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, the top team from Arena of Valor, and the top six players from Tekken 7 will advance into the training pool.
Once the Sibol training pool is complete, each player will be evaluated based on their mastery of their respective esport title as well as their compatibility with the rest of the team, among other factors.
In charge of the selection process and the handling of the teams are decorated and well-respected managers and coaches. These people will be the core people in the selection committee, whose first major task is to determine the Sibol team who will compete in December.
The pool of around 74 players will be trimmed down to 27 members, seven each for each team games (Dota 2, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, Arena of Valor) and two for each individual games (StarCraft 2, Hearthstone, and Tekken 7), by early September.
Driving the search for athletes to comprise Sibol, the PSEU has partnered with Razer. “Esports has been at the heart of Razer since the beginning,” says David Tse, Global Esports Director at Razer. “As the leading brand in esports, we have supported countless global events, teams, and athletes over the years and continue to push Esports to new heights. Now we are very excited to help esports enter a new era, where it will be a medalled event for the first time in the SEA Games.”
“We are very excited to have Razer as our partner,” says Ms. Jane Basas, PSEU co-Chairman and President of Cignal TV. “The brand has been a consistent proponent of the recognition and legitimacy of esports around the world. With their support, as well as our other partners, the PSEU is confident that the qualifiers for Sibol will bring out the best and most talented esports athletes in the country. We stand firm in our goal of SEA Games gold, and we as a team pledge to support Sibol every step of the way.”
Aside from partnering with Razer, the PSEU has also partnered with Mountain Dew as its official power-up drink. Mountain Dew is not new to esports, and they want to continue their commitments to the industry by pledging support to Sibol.
Select matches of the qualifiers will be streamed live on the Sibol Esports Facebook page (FB.com/SIBOLesports). Updates on the team and more information can be found on the official website SIBOLesports.ph and on the other social media pages (Twitter, Instagram) @SIBOLesports.
PSEU is the union of the Esports National Association of the Philippines (ESNAP) and the National Electronic Sports Federation of the Philippines (NESFP). The group is determined to make Sibol a representation of the country's best gamers and athletes aimed towards one goal: SEA Games gold.
Aside from Sibol, PSEU is also in charge of mounting the esports competition in the 30th SEA Games.