Overarching eSports brand Electronic Sports League, commonly known as ESL, has announced that the ninth season of the Intel Extreme Masters will start in China for the second year consecutively. This is just one of its various eSports events, but it is one of the lengthier ones.
China has appeared in the Intel Extreme Masters five times, ever since its inclusion in Season 3. Previously, the event stopped in locations like Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu.
For the ninth season, ESL will be premiering the competitive gaming tour in Shenzen on July 16 through July 21, 2014. Qualifiers, dubbed the Road to Shenzen, will be held starting June 1, 2014.
Prizes for the gaming competition in China have resulted in over $270,000 in payments since 2009. Last year, over 450,000 Chinese viewers tuned in for the League of Legends final of Season 8 in Katowice, Poland.
With the Intel Extreme Masters reaching nine seasons, the ESL also holds the longest ongoing sponsored event in eSports. On the partnership, George Woo of Intel’s marketing department stated:
Eight seasons long we’ve had one goal: to provide the best PC gaming technology to the best players from around the world. I couldn’t be happier to see this goal extending into the ninth season of the Intel Extreme Masters.
Aside from Intel’s event, ESL also houses other competitions, such as the Starcraft II World Championship Series and the Wargaming.net League in Europe.
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