- Esports will feature as a medal sport at the 2021 Asian Indoor and Martial Art Games (AIMAG) in Pattaya, Thailand.
- The decision was made in a meeting hosted by the Asian Electronic Sports Federation, Thailand Electronic Sports Federation, and Olympic Committee of Thailand.
- AIMAG is the biggest multi-sport indoor event in Asia, which is hosted by countries of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) every four years.
The Asian Electronic Sports Federation (AESF) announced that the 2021 Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games (AIMAG) will feature esports as a medal sport. The decision was made at a closed-door meeting hosted by the AESF, Thailand Electronic Sports Federation (TESF), and the Olympic Committee of Thailand (OCT).
The AESF has not yet disclosed which titles would be played at the AIMAG esports event. The federation is led by Kenneth Fok, current vice president of the Sports Federation and Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, and opened its first regional office in Bangkok in January 2020.
The AIMAG is regarded as the biggest multi-sport indoor event in Asia, and the countries of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) host it every four years. It was previously run as the Asian Indoor Games between 2005-2009, with a separate Asian Martial Arts Games held once in 2009 before both events were merged.
Esports was previously featured as a medal event at the 2007 and 2009 Asian Indoor Games, as well as the 2013 AIMAG. It was then held as a demonstration sport at the 2017 AIMAG, with Hearthstone, StarCraft II, The King of Fighters XIV, and Dota 2 contested.
Esports would later be featured as a demonstration event at the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games. Originally this was supposed to lead to a full medal inclusion at the 2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou, China, however, video gaming was excluded from the final sporting program.
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