Madhya Pradesh to launch country’s first-ever esports academy

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In a piece of good news for esports enthusiasts, the Madhya Pradesh sports department is launching the country’s first-ever online gaming academy next month. During the MP State Junior Esports Championship, which is scheduled to take place from July 23 to August 7, a talent hunt will also be carried out.

As per sports minister Yashodhara Raje Scindia, youngsters between the age of 12 and 17 will be eligible to participate in the 10-day esports tournament. Scindia said that the state is becoming a sports hub and with launch of the Esports Academy, they aim to improve presence in sports which are a part of the Asian Games and Olympics.

For the MP Open State Junior Esports Championship, there is no limit on number of registrations and participants can register as individuals or as a team.

“MP’s break dance and Esports Academy are the first such academies in the country that will give the youth an opportunity to hone their skills in these new sports in addition to traditional sports,” she said as quoted by The Times of India.

In March this year, the Uttar Pradesh cabinet formulated a new sports policy which included esports. It stipulated setting up of a dedicated esports academy to benefit rising talents. The academy would arrange visits by professionals to motivate and guide young players and also provide equipment for better preparation.

At the Commonwealth Games 2022 in Birmingham, India won a bronze medal in Dota 2. “The inclusion of e-sports in international events will give young players in India an opportunity to turn their passion into a profession,” Scindia believes.

Most recently, esports has been granted a spot as an official medal event at the Asian Games 2026 in Aichi-Nagoya (Japan) by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) and the Aichi-Nagoya Asian Games Organizing Committee (AINAGOC).

Meanwhile, India is taking part in five games for the upcoming Asian Games 2022 in Hangzhou (China). 15 players will represent India in FIFA22, League of Legends, Street Fighter V and DOTA 2.