Frustrations over Los Angeles Major being postponed due to the US travel ban on Europe
It’s an unfortunate time to host a large tournament right now, in fact, any events that involve large gatherings of people are very much advised to be canceled due to the recent coronavirus outbreak hitting large parts of the globe. That is the case for the Los Angeles major which is supposed to begin next week but is postponed.
After Italy recorded over 10,000 infected COVID-19 cases in just a week along with more than 600 deaths, the US government has finally decided to drop the travel ban on Europe, preventing any European citizen from entering the country for 30 days, effective immediately. This news has forced the ESL One organizers and Valve to postpone the LA major to a different time and location, most likely outside of US.
According to the official statement by ESL One, the safety and well-being of the players, attendees, coaches, partners and ESL staff must come first. While they are working with Valve to determine a new time and location for the major, they have also worked with the venue and ticket providers to refund tickets to attendees as soon as possible. While the move is the right one, we can’t forget about the plans and other accommodations that these attendees have booked beforehand to visit the major, which will most likely be wasted at this point.
ESL One’s official statement here
On the other hand, the postponing and change of the location for the third major may actually be a blessing in disguise for many teams and players who qualified for it. For instance, Team Aster, the winners of the recent Kyiv minor, could not secure US visas for 3 of its players and were desperately searching for not one but 3 stand-ins. They even went as far to contact the currently retired two-time International champion, ana, from Australia to stand-in and Miracle as well, but to no avail.
Other less severe cases such as the CIS powerhouse, Virtus.pro, also could not secure a US visa for their carry player, Cooman, while over at SEA region, Team Adroit were supposed to play without their captain, Boombacs. Due to the strict US visa application, 3 teams had to play with a huge disadvantage but now that the LA major is postponed, this would definitely give ample time for every team to guarantee their visit to the new location for the LA major.
Speaking of the location, ESL One and Valve do not have much time to decide on where their alternative locations for the LA major would be, as the next qualifiers for the Singapore Major, will be beginning very soon in approximately 3 weeks from today. And let’s not get started on how quick could ESL One get their new major location filled with attendees in such a short duration. Regardless, at the very least, ESL One and Valve aren’t giving up on hosting the major yet, so the DOTA2 community can expect some highly-anticipated games when the LA major occurs. After all, it’s the debut of the two-time International champions, team OG. Stay tuned and be healthy.