Several months ago, a conversation in the eSports scene sprung up concerning the state of female pros in eSports. While many people were against their presence in traditionally male-dominated high level tournaments, just as many stood for the opinion that women should be free to be a part of the biggest eSports tournaments and even teams, if they can qualify with no special treatment due to their gender. That just so happens to obe our opinion concerning the subject as well. The conversation about females’ role in eSports might be revitalized once again following the news, that Team Dignitas, the eSports organization owned by NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers, signed the former Selfless’ female team.
The new female Team Dignitas roster is going to be Ammalee “emuhleet” Garrido as the team’s captain and AWPer, entry fragger and support Mounira “Goosebreeder” Dobie, entry Amanda “rain” Smith, Carolyn “artStar” Noquez, and Catherine “Cath” Leroux. Heather “sapphiRe” Garozzo will act as the team’s backup player when needed, while also being their manager on a permanent basis.
The team is set to debut at IEM Katowice, at the Intel Challenge held at the event from March 2 to 3. In the future, the team should compete at international and co-ed events under the Team Dignitas banner. It’s unlikely, however, that the players will play against exclusively male teams in tournaments of IEM Katowice Main Event’s standing.
“Our intent is to recruit and develop the most talented players in the world,” said Jonathan Kemp, Team Dignitas CEO. “As a fan-first organization, we were thrilled to sign gamers who have a strong relationship with their fans and have achieved impressive success in international tournament play. We are confident that our squad will represent Team Dignitas’ history of winning in international coed and all-female competitions. Naturally we support the growth of female gamers in the industry, but chiefly saw this as an opportunity to bring premier playing talent into our Team Dignitas family.”
At this point in the history of eSports, the acknowledgment of female side of CS:GO by an org of Team Dignitas’ stature should do a lot of good for the standing of the scene in the eyes of mainstream eSports fans (which is an extremely weirdly sounding thing to say, by the way). Some day, female players will be considered for traditionally male squads at the top of the pecking order worldwide, however, there’s a long way to go before that happens. The new Team Dignitas might be the ones to break this skill glass ceiling, but then again, they may not. We shall just have to wait and see.