CSGO fans hopeful about Major after Sweden eases travel restrictions

Fariha Bhatti • August 19, 19:32

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s upcoming major may finally take place in Sweden as the authorities tweak restrictions for esports athletes.

The ministry of Sweden has eased the restrictions on esports players, providing them with the same travel exemptions as any other sport in the country. This change in the ruling brings the PGL Major closer to taking place in Stockholm, Sweden. 

CSGO’s biggest major in history was set to place in Sweden but various hurdles had blurred the possibility of that happening. With Dota 2’s International 10 moving to a different location, players feared that CSGO major would see the same fate. The ruling authorities had established that only “elite sports” athletes were allowed to travel during the online era of esports. However, it seems that this obstacle has been removed. 

A report by Swedish newspaper Expressen revealed that Minister of the Interior Mikael Damberg wants esports to be treated “in the same way as other elite athletes.” The news was highlighted by the CEO of Ninjas in Hicham Chahine, who played a crucial role in moving the authorities to re-evaluate the restrictions. The CEO has also worked with the organizers to hold previous CSGO tournaments that led Sweden to become the home of CSGO. 

Earlier, players couldn’t travel as CSGO doesn’t count as a mainstream esports, but the new development will allow players to travel freely as long as they test negative. Players partaking in elite international competitions, including esports, would travel into Sweden from the 23rd of August. However, the issue of the audience remains. 

It’s unclear whether indoor sitting would be allowed or not. NiP has confirmed that regulations permit 300 people per section, which should mean that the major would have a much bigger audience. However, nothing is yet set in stone regarding the live crowd. 

Whatever the case, the news of CSGO potentially coming back to Sweden is enough for the fans. The organizers haven’t commented on the recent developments, but likely, PGL Major will finally take place in the home of CSGO in Sweden. 

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