Thumbs-up for electronic sports at the 2022 Asian Games
ABS-CBN Sports on Apr 19, 2017 03:30 PM
FILE - In this Aug. 7, 2009, file photo, a participant plays a computer game during the Intel Friday Night Game, a competition of the ESL, Electronic Sports League, in Dresden, Germany. The Electronic Sports League and live event broadcaster BY Experience announced plans Tuesday, March 17, 2015, to bring a series of live esports events to 1,500 to 2,000 movie theaters around the world. (AP Photo/Matthias Rietschel, File)
KUWAIT CITY (AP) — Video gaming will be featured as a full sport at the 2022 Asian Games, with competitors in electronic sports set to receive medals for their digital prowess.
The Olympic Council of Asia says it will introduce esports to the official program of the Asian Games at Hangzhou, China. It will also be a demonstration sport at the 2018 Asian Games in Palembang, Indonesia.
The OCA said the decision reflects "the rapid development and popularity of this new form of sports participation among the youth."
The council is collaborating with Alisports, a unit of China's Alibaba Group, to bring esports to the games. No details were given on which video games would be included.
The Asian Games features a wide range of traditional Olympic sports along with others containing more regional appeal. Some of the more obscure sports include sepak takraw, which combines features from soccer and volleyball, and kabaddi, a contact team sport that evolved in and is dominated by India.
The sports program has also included a variety of martial arts, contract bridge, jet-ski racing and sport climbing.