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Taiwan esports team wins APL 2024 championship in Thailand

07/08/2024 08:54 PM
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New Taipei, July 8 (CNA) Taiwanese esports team Ban Mei Gaming (BMG) defeated a team from Thailand to win this year's Arena of Valor Premier League (APL) championship title in Bangkok on Sunday.

Taiwan's BMG routed Thailand's Buriram United Esports 4-1 in Arena of Valor, a multiplayer online battle game operated by Singaporean game developer Garena, to walk home with prize money of US$200,000, after ousting Flash Wolves (FW) -- another team from Taiwan -- in the semifinals.

BMG member Wu Cheng-yen (吳承晏), one of seven active players on the team, was also named the Finals Most Valuable Player (FMVP) after Sunday's tournament.

In an interview with CNA, Wu said he never imagined he would win the championship in his first professional season, let alone be named the FMVP.

Thanking his teammates and coaches, Wu said, "They taught me a lot, and I would also like to thank my family and girlfriend for supporting the team regardless of whether we win or lose."

The young Taiwanese esports star told CNA that he first started playing Arena of Valor with friends in elementary school, and later dreamed about becoming a professional player in junior high.

Wu said he became hooked on the game and would often play late into the night. His parents were against the idea of him wanting to make a living from gaming, but soon acquiesced when Wu convinced them his skills in esports were surpassing his abilities at school.

"They became supportive even before I had won anything," he added.

Meanwhile, team director Benny Chen (陳建廷) said he noticed Wu in various local school competitions, and knew early on that he was a possible future champion.

"He had a very introverted and shy personality," Chen told the CNA. "But we communicated well and there was a lot of potential to explore."

Garena, a Singaporean game developer and publisher of free online games, hosted APL 2024 from June 12 to July 7. The competition featured teams from countries including Thailand, Vietnam and Hong Kong.

(By Chen Jung-tan and Ko Lin)

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