Choke manager Tom Villiers has issued a statement, saying he has paid the players what is owed and that he will be taking a break from eSports after Insomnia.
The news comes after former player Luka “Lukezy” Trumbić shared some chat logs between himself and Tom Villiers, claiming he had not been paid his share of Insomnia rewards or ESL prize money.
Tom will be stepping back from the organisation after i58, and will instead return to tournament admin and events ops.
“As of today, August 15th 2016, the Choke players have been paid for ESL LoL season 2 Premiership,” Tom said in a Twitlonger post.
“As an apology for the delay I have deducted Choke’s 10% cut from the winnings and given 100% of the winnings to the players.
“I take full responsibility for the delay, I have let the organisation down and the players down, I can only apologise for my mistakes and move on. I feel Luka releasing chat logs was extremely harsh.
“If he released them after today and I hadn’t paid when I promised, I’d feel more sympathetic towards his situation and would find it more understandable why he would take such action.
“I will be taking a break from eSports after this Insomnia as I feel emotionally drained by the burden of running a organisation, especially when added the legal implications with the former director/manager, which I felt held us back from moving forward.
“I would also like to note to other people running organisations, I can’t give out personal phone numbers/details of the companies who sponsor Choke under any circumstance.”
Ahead of today’s payment, Tom previously told eSports News UK: “Luka will get paid, no doubt about that. I’m an inexperienced manager, I made a mistake, but I’m not a thief. Luka will receive his money on Monday like I promised.”
Tom says he only received the money from ESL last week. He also claims that Luka wasn’t asking Choke to pay the money, but for Tom to pay it out of his own wages.
— Tom Villiers (@Gankicus) 14 August 2016
Part of the reason for the delay was that Tom never received the payment form from Jordan Walsh, who was coaching Choke at the time.
“Basically at Insomnia58 I was never given the payment form. Jordan Walsh (the coach at the time) was given it and he ‘misplaced it’. I chased up Multiplay with emails but reveived no response. So then Luka expects me to fork out £150 out of my own personal bank account.”
Tom also admitted that he won’t be managing Choke’s eSports division if and when it returns.
“I just can’t wait to get this Insomnia over and done with. Then get an experienced manager in to run Choke, it’s not for me,” he added.
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
A keen League of Legends and World of Warcraft player, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He works as full-time content director for the British Esports Association and runs ENUK in his spare time.