With the rise of esports events around the world, us gamers couldn’t help but wonder if one day it would ever become an Olympic sport. Now with esports becoming a demo sport at the 2018 Asian Games and will become an official medalled sport at the 2022 Asian Games, the dream of many aspiring esports athletes is becoming more of a reality than ever.
The boom of esports in the Philippines has led to the creation of a new national sports association (NSA) specifically catered to esports. The Esports National Association of the Philippines (ESNAP) is a non-profit organisation with a mission to support Filipino esports athletes, especially at the grassroots level, and to make the Philippines the centre of online gaming.
Ren Vitug, the secretary-general of ESNAP, had said at the press conference for 'Road to the Nationals' that their “main goal is to have the Philippines’ best foot forward in international esports events, amateur and pro” adding that grassroots events are especially important in the world of esports.
Although the ESNAP is not officially recognised as a regular NSA by the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC), its president, Ricky Vargas, is “happy that the Philippines has formalised esports as a sport and that an NSA has been created to support it”.
“...esports will be the sports of the future. You cannot turn around anymore, you have to bring it to the [Olympic] Games.”
- Ricky Vargas, Philippine Olympic Committee
What do you think about this news? Do you think that other Southeast Asian countries will follow suit and create their own esports-specific sports associations? Let us know in the comments and don’t forget to follow us over on our Facebook, Twitter and Youtube for more gaming related goodness!