IEM rules on traveling Brazil mix
ESL have clarified their stance regarding Brazilian mix team SÓ JOGA's attempt to compete in the North American IEM Rio RMR qualifier, with the tournament organizer stating that the team is in violation of rules regarding competing in qualifiers outside of one's home region. As such, SÓ JOGA will not be allowed to play in the qualifier despite their best efforts.
News broke yesterday of SÓ JOGA and their plans to compete in the NA IEM Rio RMR qualifier. The squad, a mix team whose most familiar member is Matheus "prt" Scuvero formerly of oNe, flew from Brazil to Mexico in order to compete in NA's IEM Rio RMR qualifiers, as the South American qualifiers drew to a close earlier this week. The move certainly shows how committed these players are to trying to reach the Major held in their home country, as Dust2 Brasil originally reported that SÓ JOGA were not even sure if they would be able to compete once they arrived in Mexico, with the players set on taking an expensive gamble for a shot at being able to compete in the first Major in Brazil.
Unforunately for SÓ JOGA, ESL's rules on the matter of competing in regions outside of one's home region are clearly defined. When providing a statement on the matter, ESL highlighted sections 2.7.3 and 2.7.4 of their IEM Rio rulebook, which stipulate rules regarding what a team's home region is, and how this home region determines what regional qualifier a team may participate in. The only ambiguity in the rules that may have allowed SÓ JOGA to compete are three exceptions to the home region rule, which are laid out in section 2.7.4. These exceptions are:
There are no qualifiers in the home region(s) for the participant and they are willing to travel to the region of the qualifier to play it
The team is taking part in a competition(s) in a region other than their home region(s) and has matches to play there before and after and in such close proximity to the time of the qualifier(s) in their home region(s) that travelling back for that qualifier(s) would be unreasonable
The participant is staying in another region for a good reason (esports related) for a prolonged time that spans the time of the qualifier for their home region, and it can be clearly shown that this situation has not been created in order to take part in a qualifier that might be easier to qualify from
Any hope that SÓ JOGA would have in being able to compete in the North American qualifiers rested in these exceptions. Unfortunately for the Brazilians, ESL determind that the squad did not fall into the criteria of any of the three exceptions, and as such the team would not be allowed to compete, thus ending the saga of SÓ JOGA's last ditch hopes of making their way to IEM Rio.