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ESIC bans 35 more CS:GO players for betting offences
As many as 35 more pro CS:GO players have been issued with competitive bans of up to 5 years by the Esports Integrity Commission, following a joint ESIC and ESEA investigation which unearthed several breaches of the Anti-Corruption Code in domestic Counter-Strike competitions.
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Following on from a troublesome year for competitive Counter Strike: Global Offensive which saw the banning of coaches and players for violations of code of conduct, the ESIC have now announced that 35 more pro players have been issued bans for betting related offences.
The full report was posted on January 22 and may be found here.
The multitude of bans comes at the end of a near-two year process from the esports watchdog, who has been investigating match-fixing in Australia, America, and more recently several European competitions for the past 24 months.
In the report, ESIC confirmed that “a total of 35 individuals have been observed to be in breach of the Anti-Corruption Code administered by ESIC. This in addition to the initial six individuals previously sanctioned by ESIC on October 23, 2020.”
The betting offences were reportedly carried out via the Ladbrokes Australia’s gambling apps and the Sydney based “bookie” were able to assist the ESIC with their investigation.
ESIC issues sanctions against 35 players for betting related offences & extends bans for 2 players previously sanctioned in October 2020.— ESIC (@ESIC_Official) January 22, 2021
ESIC will continue to investigate further offences in Australia, NA and Europe in cooperation with law enforcement.
The ESIC have been actively investigating and challenging the state of competitive integrity in Counter Strike and it is a shame to see that the esports watchdog has seemingly had a lot of work to do over the past 24 months.
37 coaches were sanctioned in September 2020 for abusing the spectator bug which allowed those observers of particular games to see parts of the map that would ordinarily be unseen for spectators. They would then use this information and relay it back to their team to gain unfair advantages over their opponents.
There were also 7 CS:GO players in Australia who were banned in October 2020 for the same reasons as those announced today; the MDL and the ESIC closed in on their investigation in October which uncovered players betting on matches that they would be playing in themselves.
Unfortunately, we have had to share similar news at the start of the New Year and there are even more culprits this time around. Here is the full list of banned players:
Full list of banned CSGO players
The lengthy list of banned Australian players come from a multitude of orgs, and include at least one code-hoping convert who has recently made the switch to Valorant.
Joel ‘PEARSS’ Kurta, who spent six months playing for Ground Zero in 2020, has been handed a 12-month ban starting January 22. It is unclear how this will affect his competitive career, however, as he swapped to Valorant team “WaterBottle.”
Ground Zero player, Andy ‘Noobster’ Zhang, also received a lengthy ban. The 24-year-old, who most recently was a stand-in for AVANT, was handed a three-year suspension.
The thirty-five banned CSGO players were in breach with Article 2.2 of ESIC’s Anti-Corruption Code, as well as ESEA’s standing MDL tournament rules.
The longest ban was for Wilson ‘willyks’ Sugianto (60 months).
Banned duo Daryl ‘Mayker’ May (previously Ground Zero) and Akram ‘ADK’ Smida (previously Rooster) also had their sanctions amended. Smida’s ban has been increased to 24 months, while May is now set for four years on the sideline.
- Jeremy “motion” Lloyd (Control) — 12 months
- Patrick “falcon” Romano De Sousa (Control) — 12 months
- Johnathan “Del” Sackesen (Lese) — 12 months
- Grayson “vax” Uppington (Overt) — 12 months
- Aidan “meta” Wiringi Jones (Overt) — 12 months
- Kaito “minusthecoffee” Massey (Aftermind) — 12 months
- Mason “msn” Trevaskis (Aftermind) — 12 months
- John “jcg” Grima (Integral Nation) — 12 months
- Isaac “prodigy” Dahlan (Integral Nation) — 12 months
- Billy “beetee” Thomson (Integral Nation) — 12 months
- Kieren “Muzoona” Jackson-Clapper (Integral Nation) — 12 months
- Matthew “zilla” Zdilar (Mako) — 12 months
- James “roflko” Lytras (Vertex) — 12 months
- Damon “damyo” Portelli (LAKERS) — 12 months
- Jak “jtr” Robinson (Rooster 2) — 12 months
- Daniel “rekonz” Mort (R!OT Gaming) — 12 months
- Nicolas “lato” Gullotti (Skyfire) — 12 months
- Marcus “mdk” Kyriazopoulos (really weird) — 12 months
- Joel “pearss” Kurta (Waterbottle, Valorant) — 12 months
- James “jamie” MacPhail (Downfall) — 12 months
- Ioan (Ionica) “bowie” Tuleasca (Lese) — 12 months
- Joshua “joshaaye” Wilson — 12 months
- Ryan “kragz” Clarke (Incept) — 12 months
- Roman “matr1kz” Santos (Forbidden) — 24 months
- Cailan “caily” Lovegrove (Aftermind) — 24 months
- Andy “Noobster” Zhang (Ground Zero) — 36 months
- Jayden “foggers” Graham (Control) — 48 months
- Sam “tham” Mitchell (Buckets) — 48 months
- Mate “habbo hotel” Poduje (LAKERS) — 48 months
- Samuel “samy” Jarvis (Caught off Guard) — 48 months
- Daniel “deezy” Zhang (Aftermind) — 48 months
- John “wots” Zhu (Forbidden) — 48 months
- Matthew “jam” Castro (Overt) — 60 months
- Alvin “Gravins” Changgra — 60 months
- Wilson “willyks” Sugianto (Vertex) — 60 months
- Akram “ADK” Smida (Rooster) — 24 months (from 12)
- Daryl “Mayker” May (Ground Zero) — 48 months (from 12)
ESIC concluded their report by sending a message to the CS:GO community:
“It is crucially important that professional players abstain from placing bets on the game in which they earn an income from,” the esports watchdog wrote, “in order to preserve the integrity of the esports landscape internationally and mitigate the potential for bad actors to take advantage of our sport.”
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