Many of Vietnam’s youth dream of becoming future esports athletes, as Vietnam’s pro-esports athletes have gained not only fame but also economic success. A gaming website that keeps track of esports by countries, has in fact ranked Vietnam as the 26th in its roster of 100 countries for having the highest esports tournament earners domestically and internationally.
Based on data gathered by the site, it is estimated that the country has 1,044 professional esports players who have collectively gained a total of $4,754,653 as tournament prizes. In the domestic front alone, Vietnamese professional gamers have already collected a total of $139,167 during the 1st quarter of 2021.
Only recently, the country’s top tournament organizer Vietnam Recreational Esport Association (VIRESA) ran the University Esports Championship (UEC) 2021 tournament from April 10th – April 25th, 2021. The goal was to discover more of Vietnam’s highly-skilled gamers, whom they intend to field as representatives in international events, particularly in the forthcoming 31st Southeast Asian (SEA) Games that Vietnam will host in Hanoi in November.
About the 31st SEA Games’ Esports Tournament
According to VIRESA vice president Duong Vi Khoa, the 2021 SEA Games will again include esports events. In addition to the six titles previously featured in the 2019 SEA Games, four more have been added, bringing the number of esports competitions in the 2021 SEA Game to a total of 10. Duong Vi Khoa himself is a pro-esports athlete, having led the delegation of esports players who competed in the 2019 (SEA) Games held in the Philippines.
Aside from League of Legends (LOL), DOTA 2: Arena of Valor, Hearthstone, Crossfire, FIFA Online 4 and Pro Evolution Soccer on PC, mobile esports tournaments will also be held for Wild Rift, Mobile Legends, Free Fire and Bang Bang, all in PUBG (Player Unknown’s Battleground) version.
Actually, Vietnam’s National Olympic Committee (NOC) had originally excluded esports as one of the featured medal games, mainly because of economic constraints caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
Still, Razer’s global esports director David Tiu disclosed that through the concerted efforts of regional esports federations, they were able to reverse the decision of the country’s olympics committee. In fact, aside from esports, Vietnam’s NOC added three more sports tournaments namely for bowling, triathlon and jiu jitsu. Thereafter, the Southeast Asian Games Federation Executive Committee gave concurrent approval to the additional games.
Online Sports Betting Sites in Vietnam Gearing Up for the 31st SEA Games
Vietnames locals are also known for their strong enthusiasm toward gambling, and one way they show their support for Vietnam’s national teams is to stake wagers on related tournaments. Although the government of Vietnam legalized sports betting, wagering activities on sports events is limited to domestic and FIFA-organized Football Championship, as well as on horse and greyhound races.
However, the country has yet to have a licensed sportsbook operator to legally offer betting products. In the meantime, online bookmakers like Bet365, SkyBet, Betway, Betsson, Mr. Green and other foreign-based sportsbooks accept wagers from Vietnam punters despite the country’s ban on online gambling.
Newcomer vwin, the Asian gambling sponsor of AC Milan Serie A and Club Juventus, is also gaining traction as a favorite among non-English speaking Vietnamese punters. Mainly because the locals find it easier to place wagers at the vwin website, where betting and promotional offers are presented to them in Vietnamese language.