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Worlds 2022: Several players to play remotely due to positive COVID tests

Riot Games announced on October 13 that multiple players, coaches and tournament staff members participating in the 2022 League of Legends World Championship group stage had tested positive for COVID-19.

Among the prominent players who tested positive were Lee “Scout” Ye-chan of EDward Gaming, Kim “Canyon” Geon-bu of DWG KIA, Jeong “Chovy” Ji-hoon of Gen.G, as well as the entire Royal Never Give Up roster except for Chen “GALA” Wei.

They will play their upcoming Worlds 2022 matches remotely from an isolated facility as long as they feel okay to play. Riot’s statement on the matter reads, “Our policy states that in the event a competitor returns a positive result for COVID-19 but feels well enough to compete and choose to play.”

“The affected player will play the scheduled match on a LAN network built in the isolation facilities.”

Riot also said that the match schedule might be impacted as a result of this remote play adjustment. Previously, due to the difficulty of setting up LAN networks in the isolation facilities, most games were delayed by at least 30 minutes.

According to Riot’s health and safety protocols, players competing in the 2022 League World Championship must submit to mandatory COVID tests every morning.

If a team member is unable to compete because they get very sick from COVID, the team may assign a substitute player in their place.

Other COVID-positive players

Riot confirmed that Scout EDG Midlaner tested positive for the virus after undergoing a mandatory test. “[Scout] has been confirmed positive after a second PCR test,” EDG said in an official statement on Twitter.

Fortunately, the team later said that the player was feeling well and would train with the team from a separate room. While the rest of the team competes at the venue, he will compete from a separate room via a built-in LAN network.

DWG KIA’s bot laner Seo “deokdam” Dae-gil will have to compete remotely along with Canyon as well. Their team is currently in second place in their group and will play its final matches on Friday, October 14.

On the Gen.G side, aside from Chovy, head coach Go “Score” Dong-bin and coach Kim “Museong” Moo-seong have also tested positive but are well enough to continue to participate in the tournament. The team’s next game is on Sunday, October 16.

“Following Riot testing protocols, each member will participate online from an isolated facility,” Gen.G. posted on Twitter. “Luckily, all the affected members feel well enough to play.”

As cited above, RNG, who is currently 3-0 in the Worlds group stage’s first round robin, only has bot laner Chen “GALA” Wei to continue to play in person in New York City on Sunday, October 16. Top Laner Chen “Breathe” Chen, Jungler Yan “Wei” Yang-Wei, Midlaner Li “Xiaohu” Yuanhao, and Support Shi “Ming” Sen-Ming, will play from a location near the venue.

This is not the first time that RNG has had to deal with a COVID-related problem. Previously, the team was also forced to compete at the Mid-Season Invitational in a remote setting earlier this year due to the zero-COVID policy in China.

Since the start of Worlds 2022 earlier this month, many players have competed online due to testing positive for COVID-19, including several MAD Lions and Fnatic players in the play-in stage.