Millions of online viewers, thousands of fans, esports community and industry leaders join a 16 pro-team powerhouse in Riyadh across 3 days to celebrate crowning of champion at the Global Esports Federation’s first LIVE audience event
After three days of intense live competition in the battle royale blockbuster – PUBG MOBILE – at the Global Esports Tour Riyadh, YaLLa Esports took home the trophy and US$45,000 prize. Falcons Esports and Rico Infinity Team came in a close second and third with four points and 11 points behind YaLLA, respectively, to complete the podium.
Convened by the Global Esports Federation and hosted by the Saudi Esports Federation, the GET Riyadh was the GEF’s first tournament open to spectators, as fans return to live events across the world. The event was hosted as part of the 2021 Riyadh Seasons. Thousands of fans, esports community and industry leaders filled the arena at the Riyadh Front Exhibition and Conference Center to witness the matches over the three-day tournament. The matches were also streamed live across the GEF YouTube and Twitch channels, and across partner streaming platforms in local languages including Russian, Bahasa Indonesia, and Nepali, capturing millions of online fans worldwide.
The winning team had gone into the final day of matches as fan favourites, having built up a 41-point lead over closest competitors Rico Infinity Team. Their rivals, including Falcons Esports, put up a good flight in the battle to be the ultimate champion. Falcons gave YaLLa little breathing space, at one point late in the final match coming within just two kills of levelling the score. The podium finishers edged out pre-tournament favourites like Virtus.Pro, Nepalese sides DRS Gaming, and Trained To Kill. Team YaLLa was presented the trophy by His Royal Highness Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Sultan Al Saud, President of the Saudi Esports Federation, Arab Esports Federation, and Member of the Board of the Global Esports Federation.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling, almost strange. This is the first time I felt like this, I’ve never felt like this before. You always think you want to be champion one day, and you repeat this story for over a year, that you will be champion one day. Finally, we did it,” said team player Bandar Alkahtani.
The winning team attributed their triumph to their coach, Kevin Salameh who is a former player himself who competed on the circuit just two years ago. “Kevin was the key to our win. He always motivated us and got us in the mood,” added Alkahtani.
“What a night! The excitement at the Global Esports Tour Riyadh was electric and energizing. The community loved the format, prestigious staging, and hyper-professional organization. We are committed to presenting powerful opportunities for our #worldconnected across the world by showcasing the pure human talent from these incredible athletes. The discipline, preparation – both physical and mental – combined with strategy and epic game play – was thrilling to see live,” said Paul J. Foster, CEO of the GEF.
“Congratulations and deep gratitude to HRH Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Sultan Al Saud and the team at Saudi Esports Federation, and our delivery partners across the globe. The idea to integrate the GET Riyadh into the beautiful 2021 Riyadh Seasons was a genius move – with thousands of cheering fans in what will forever be known as the GEF’s first LIVE event,” he added.
British esports commentator and analyst, Jake “Highland Wolf” Hannett; esports caster, analyst and coach, Joshua “Professor Tarzan” Chan, as well as Arabic casters and gaming video creators Abdulaziz “Henky” Almuhanna and Tariq “K0de” Khtatneh provided their expert commentary and analysis at the live event.
The GET Riyadh event followed the GET Los Angeles stop last month, which featured Hearthstone® and was also the first in-person competition for the title in two years. The GET is the GEF’s Pro-Team tournament staged in key global cities throughout the year. The tournament showcases the skills and talent from different game genres from around the world. Beyond the GET, Riyadh is confirmed as host city for the GEF’s flagship event – the Global Esports Games 2023. The GEG features teams from across the world participating in multi-title esports competitions and active esports.