MANILA, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) -- eSports is officially to be staged as a medal sport when the South East Asian (SEA) Games comes to the Philippines in 2019.
The announcement was made by former Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary and Philippines South East Asian Games Organizing Committee (PhilSGOC) Chairman Emeritus Alan Peter Cayetano during a press conference here on Wednesday.
According to Cayetano, there will be six gold medals awarded for three gaming platforms -- two for console, two for PC and two for mobile.
The multiplayer online battle arena game Only Mobile Legends: Bang Bang has been confirmed as one of the games that will be contested. The other titles are expected to be finalized by December 15.
The PhilSGOC and Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) partnered with gaming hardware company Razer to elevate eSports to a recognized medal sport at the regional multi-sport event.
"We are very thrilled, excited, and honored to have eSports in the SEA Games with Razer as a partner," said Cayetano on Wednesday, adding that the gamers are an important part of SEA Games community.
eSports' inclusion in the SEA Games is accredited by the Asian Electronic Sports Federation.
So far, the Southeast Asian Games Federation Council (SEAFC) has approved a total of 56 sports to be contested in the 2019 Manila SEA Games, which will run from November 30 to December 10 next year.
eSports also featured in the 2018 Asian Games, but only as a demonstration sport.
Launched in 1959, the SEA Games is a biennial multi-sport event involving participants from 11 countries in Southeast Asia.