Redeye still hyped for ESL One Mumbai despite disruption
ESL One Mumbai host Paul 'Redeye' Chaloner is sure the event will be "sensational", despite disruption in the build-up.
Five teams announced they were pulling out of the event on Wednesday - less than a week before the first group stage matches are due to start.
NIP, Alliance, Gambit, J.Storm and Chaos have withdrawn, forcing organisers to restructure the format and add reduce the size of the field to eight teams. North American org Team Team have been added to the list of participants.
But Redeye is sure the event - the first major Dota 2 event in India - will be a success.
He said "It's pretty extraordinary, I can't remember an announcement where five teams had to pull out.
"You might be thinking 'ESL One Mumbai is not going to be very good' but you would be further from the truth than you could imagine. I think it's going very special.
"Ignore the players and the teams and the talent for a moment. Imagine how starved Indian esports fans have been over the past 15 years, watching esports get bigger and bigger all around the world and never having something to watch in their home cities.
"There are a lot of esports fans, as well as teams, players and talent. I can't tell you the last time I had so many people message me on Twitter to tell me how excited they are to see an international-grade, world-class broadcast head to their town.
"It reminds me of three years ago when I went to South Africa for the first time - it's the same kind of excitement."
Special for Signify
The change in format means all eight teams will progress to the ESL One Mumbai play-off stage, including Indian org Signify.
Luckbox ambassador, Redeye, who is desk host at the event, said: "It means every single team gets at least one match on the stage, in front of the crowd, including our hometown Indian team, who will get to play in front of an Indian crowd at an international event in Mumbai.
"That is going to be spectacular and I can't wait for you to share and see how crazy the Indian fans are and how wild they'll go for their home team. I can't wait."
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Picture: Copyright ESL Helena Kristiansson