The second season of the ESL ESEA Pro League will kick off on Sept. 15. Featuring the best teams in the world split among Europe and North America divisions, it should be an extremely competitive affair. But one team fans hoped would appear in the competition was conspicuously absent from the invite list released today by ESL: Renegades.
The Australian side, widely considered one of the best teams outside Europe, plans to come to America in order to give themselves more opportunity to train against top class teams. Competing in the Pro League would have been an added bonus.
After a slight dip in their recent form, Renegades put up good performances at ESL One Cologne, defeating Titan and putting up 11 rounds against semifinalists Team SoloMid. Despite dropping out in the group stage, it was a promising showing.
But in order to take the team to the next step, the team is moving to the States. The move “will help improve our team synergy and help us practice on a much more professional level,” team captain Chad “Spunj” Burchill told the Daily Dot just days ago in Cologne. He’d prefer to play in the Pro League, he says, but it won’t make or break the trip. They’re coming to America regardless of ESL’s decision.
The move to the US has been orchestrated by the team’s new organization, Renegades, a team which actually sports “LA” above the name in their logo, belying their Los Angeles location. Fronted by League of Legends shoutcaster Christopher “Montecristo” Mykles and Chris “Doombang” Badawi, the team’s League squad recently qualified for the game’s top league. Their Counter-Strike team wasn’t afforded the same opportunity.
— MonteCristo (@MonteCristo) August 27, 2015
Even without the Australians, the Pro League promises to provide another thrilling competition.
The ESL ESEA Pro League features an eight week season leading into regional finals, with the top four from Europe and North America battling it out in an offline final to take home the grand prize of $100,000. Last season the finals were hosted at the ESL studios in Cologne, Germany. This time around the Europeans will make the journey across the Atlantic to the ESL studios in California later in the year.