AGO loses ESL Polish Championship title due to alleged stream-sniping violation

HONORIS, the runners-up of the tournament, has been awarded the title.

Image via Valve

AGO, the No. 1 CS:GO team in Poland according to HLTV’s rankings, has been stripped of its ESL Polish Championship Spring 2021 following the result of an investigation into an alleged case of stream-sniping.

The news comes via an official release from ESL Poland. This means that HONORIS, home of legends Filip “NEO” Kubski and Wiktor “TaZ” Wojtas and the runners-up of the ESL Polish Championship Spring 2021, has been declared champions. The players will receive over $6,500 in prize, the trophy, and perhaps most importantly, a spot in ESL National Championships Global Playoff Spring, which serves as a qualifier for IEM tournaments.

The investigation about the alleged stream-sniping case begun on May 18 after ESL Poland received a video of AGO’s players celebrating their victory against HONORIS in the grand final. The video was recorded inside a room where three AGO players were playing the match and also had a computer with the official stream on “within sight of at least two AGO representatives, one of whom was in direct contact with the team,” according to ESL Poland.

“AGO responded to all of our inquiries and provided all available resources, and presented a plausible scenario indicating that the representatives made this mistake without malicious intent.” ESL Poland’s official statement read, via machine translation. “In view of this, we refrained from even harsher measures, such as a two-year disqualification from ESL tournaments.”

In a response to ESL Poland’s announcement, AGO stated that it take all available legal steps, not only to revert the ruling but to also protect the name of the organization.

“The AGO representative had the stream of the final match in sight but was not in direct contact with the team,” the organization said, via machine translation. “This unintentional incident was not intended to and was not the reason for the winning team gaining any advantage and did not affect the final result, which is clearly confirmed by the audio-visual materials we provided to ESL Poland as part of our full cooperation.”

AGO will appeal to the Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) once it has received a written decision from ESL Poland, containing plausible evidence and concrete indication of the allegedly violated point of the rules. Until then, the Polish organization will not provide further comments.

“We consider the current position of ESL Poland as fundamentally inconsistent with the spirit of the sport and contrary to the DNA of AGO, which we have been building on the principle of fair play from the very beginning,” AGO’s statement ended.