ENCE Academy UK coach Whitey reacts to postponement of WePlay Academy League following Russian missile strikes on Ukraine: ‘People’s safety is more important than CSGO’

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Ukraine-based esports tournament organiser WePlay has postponed Season 6 of its CSGO WePlay Academy League following Russia’s missile strikes on Ukraine.

The tournament, which provides a platform for CSGO organisation academy teams to play one another, was due to start today (Monday October 10th 2022).

WePlay said in a statement on Twitter today: “Today Season 6 of the WePlay Academy League was supposed to start. Our team spent weeks in preparation for this day, and we were sure that nothing could stop us.

“However, today our entire country woke up to a massive missile attack by the Russian Federation, sirens and explosions are heard in Kyiv, Kharkiv, Lviv, Dnipro and a dozen other cities in Ukraine. Some areas have the electricity supply cut off. Dozens of dead and hundreds of wounded are already reported.

“Due to this, we are forced to postpone the start of Season 6. Our main value is our employees’ safety, and we cannot expose them to additional risk. Further updates on the tournament start will be announced later. Thank you for your understanding.”

There are 14 teams in the WePlay Academy League, including the academy rosters of Fnatic, Astralis, BIG, Navi, Mouz, NiP and more.

There are two UK talent links in the WePlay Academy League: Fnatic Rising player Volt and ENCE Academy coach Whitey, who joined the org back in May.

Whitey told Esports News UK: “Of course we are saddened by the game being postponed today as we were really pumped up and excited to play and prove ourselves in our second season. But there is more importance to the staff and safety of the WePlay guys and everything else/human in Ukraine at the moment, rather than Counter-Strike games or tournaments.

“My thoughts and prayers are with them and I’m excited to begin when the time is right with my team.”

Other members of the CSGO and esports community showed their support to WePlay and Ukraine on Twitter, including esports org 00 Nation, Copenhagen Flames and others.

UK caster BDog commented, “stay safe”, while fellow UK caster Ne0kai added: “Really horrible situation, but im hoping every stays safe and that all the crew at WePlay Esports are alright.”

WePlay later announced the broadcast talent for season 6, including UK caster TheEternalJay:

Back in February, WePlay casters left Ukraine over fears of the impending Russian invasion, with UK’s James Banks and others departing the country.

A few weeks ago, ODPixel, Dendi, SirActionSlacks and others took part in a Dota 2 charity showmatch to raise money for Ukraine.

Related article: How the esports community reacted to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

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