hally suspended from PGL Major Antwerp 2022. Team Spirit criticize ESIC for this decision
The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) has suspended Team Spirit's coach Sergey "hally" Shavaev from PGL Major Antwerp 2022 due to suspicion of using the coaching bug. The organization announced this on their social media, while also criticizing the decision of the Commission and questioning its competence.
hally was one of three coaches to be mentioned in the ESIC preliminary report yesterday regarding the use of the spectator mode bug on the professional scene. As of now, the names of two other specialists, the offenses against which are of a serious nature and do not allow them to take part in the upcoming Major, remain unknown.
Team Spirit reported that the Commission suspects hally of abusing the 2019 edition of the bug. Back then, he coached Espada and, according to the ESIC, abused the game's vulnerability in one round.
Along with the release of the video of the incident, Team Spirit provided their explanation of what happened.
Hally had been working as a coach for 4 months, he didn't know about the existence of the bug and didn't try to cause it intentionally. A huge part of any coach's job consists of watching his team's matches and when the situation displayed in the video happens to you, you don't want to just log out of the server, you want to watch the round unfold and reconnect only after that. That's exactly what he did. Based on the content of the video above, it's absolutely not clear to us what benefit the team could get? During the entire time of this round, he didn't see a single opponent; during almost the whole round, the players of his team were in the same place where his camera froze, and they received all the information on their own. Almost the entire round, his camera was directed at his players, and this was directly related to the fact that he wanted to watch his team and just do his job. This is the only moment in his career that the ESIC found a coaching bug "abuse" and it happened right after the warmup, when its occurrence is most likely (coaching bug appears after the death of a player who is being watched by the coach).
The club criticized the ESIC decision, drawing attention to the incompetence of this organization and the lack of any real benefit from its existence for the professional CS:GO scene.
From the procedural perspective, neither Team Spirit nor hally know who the ESIC even are. We don't know who conducted this investigation and who made the decision on the punishment, who is this commissioner to whom ESIC refers in their letter. No one has introduced us to their code which they constantly refer to. No tournament operator uses their code as an official document at any of their tournaments. It's also not clear to us where the power of these unknown people comes from. All this leads to disappointing consequences, namely the lack of the possibility of satisfaction. The only entity we can turn to to appeal the ESIC's decision is ESIC itself! Moreover, they literally offered hally a discount on the ban period if he just admits to all their charges without defending himself. By making this statement, we are giving up this amazing opportunity of a 25% discount on his punishment in order to try to influence the future of esports.
What has ESIC done for esports? They declare it their mission to fight for honesty and ethics in esports, but what have they really done? Have they somehow influenced the issues with fixed matches? Issues with cheaters? Issues with radar hack? No, they clung to the situation with CB because they are literally unable to solve real problems and they simply justify their existence by only attacking coaches who simply cannot defend themselves. This is their only way to stay relevant in the industry because they are of no use in anything else.
PGL Major Antwerp 2022, where hally will not be able to show up, will be held from May 9 to 22. Team Spirit will start off from the Challengers Stage, where they will face off against Imperial in their opening match.