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Dota 2 Riyadh Masters 2024 joins Esports World Cup in Saudi Arabia's multi-title festival

Posted : 07 February 2024

The Dota 2 Riyadh Masters 2024 has been announced as part of the Esports World Cup, a multi-title esports festival in Saudi Arabia scheduled for July. The tournament will feature 20 Dota 2 teams, with qualification based on points earned during the 2024 ESL Pro Tour (EPT) season.


Eight teams will enter through the EPT Leaderboard, while twelve will be selected through regional qualifiers taking place in May and June. The event's prize pool has not been disclosed yet.


Organized by ESL and the Saudi Esports Federation, the Dota 2 Riyadh Masters is an annual tier-1 competition. In the previous edition, it garnered significant viewership, reaching a peak of 587,000 viewers with a $15 million prize pool.


The tournament was previously part of the esports festival Gamers8, which has been replaced by the Esports World Cup, announced by Saudi Arabia's Prime Minister, Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, in October 2023. The Esports World Cup will be held annually in Riyadh, featuring various titles and ambitious prize pools.


While details about the Esports World Cup are still undisclosed, Ralf Reichert, CEO of the Esports World Cup Foundation, has hinted at an impressive prize pool and a double-figure title lineup for the event.


Other titles announced for the festival include StarCraft 2, Counter-Strike 2 tournaments, and the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Mid Season Cup. Additionally, the Esports World Cup Foundation has launched a program to support esports teams and organizations, offering a 'six-figure payout.'


Despite the excitement surrounding the Esports World Cup, it has faced criticism from some in the esports community, with accusations of 'esportswashing.' Critics argue that Saudi Arabia is using esports to divert attention from its human rights record, particularly concerning LGBTQ+ and women's rights.


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