Football Sports Development Limited (FSDL) along with the leading esports company NODWIN Gaming announced the release of the eISL in a partnership with EA SPORTS. The inaugural edition will feature all 11 Hero ISL clubs represented by 22 esports athletes.
The inaugural edition of the competition will debut along with the Hero ISL 2021-22 season from November 19 while the finals of the tournament are set to take place on March 20, 2022. The prize pool for the inaugural edition is set to be Rs 78 lacs. The qualification process will commence from November 1-3, 2021.
To register for the event, the players will have to create an ESL Play ID to register for the tournament on the ESL Play platform. The minimum age to register for the event is 16. A total of 22 esports athletes, 11 male and 11 female, will represent all ISL clubs.
The players to make it to finals 22, will have to play 11 online qualifiers with each qualifier will determine the representatives for the 11 clubs. The clubs will then compete in a round-robin match format with the top four clubs making it into the grand finals. The finalists will then play a double-elimination format to determine the winner of the event.
In this collaboration with EA SPORTS, FSDL has ensured their commitment to curating new concepts and platforms to engage with a growing number of young football fans, thus the inception of eISL while also exploring global facets of football.
Martin Bain, Chief Executive Officer at FSDL, said: “Fan engagement is one of the key factors to building a sport and expanding its footprint. The growing online gaming landscape in India provides a great opportunity to engage with the next generation of fans in the country. The esports experience is vital to the future of football and we continue to evolve towards its growth. ESL is an exciting platform and we are confident that it will lead the evolution of fan engagement and contribute significantly to boost the sport’s popularity in the country.”