In the wake of ESL’s decision to implement drug testing at their next event, Gfinity has also begun working to combat the use of PEDs.
Performance Enhancing Drugs, such as Adderall and Ritalin, are designed to improve focus and attention in sufferers of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
Martin Wyatt, head of partnerships at Gfinity, told eSports Pro: “The use of PEDs is prohibited at all Gfinity competitions and we are working with the other leading global eSports tournament providers to establish a common testing framework to ensure that those breaching those rules will be identified.”
The use of drugs by eSports athletes was alluded to be rife by former Cloud9 player Kory “Semphis” Friesen who stated the entire team had been on Adderall at ESL One Katowice in an interview this week.
The ESL’s announcement that they would begin skin testing for PEDs at next month’s ESL Cologne event has kickstarted a discussion that has hitherto been a background murmur in the industry.
But now that drug use has been implicated at one of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s largest annual events, with a prize pool of $250,000 and concurrent viewership of more than 1m, it can no longer be ignored.
The next step is establishing a unified policy for PEDs across all organisers, something that Gfinity suggests is already happening.
“As in any high level sport,” Wyatt said, “such an approach is necessary not just to identify the small number of cheats, but to preserve the reputation of the majority who want a clean sport.”