Following a report by Richard Lewis on Monday that unveiled evidence of possible match-fixing in a game between Chinese CS:GO teams T.O.T and EMP at a World Cyber Arena tournament, the WCA has taken action against one of the allegedly involved parties.
According to Lewis’ initial report, there were two sizable bets made in favor of T.O.T against EMP on esports betting site VP Game. The picture and names of the accounts looked like they belonged to two players from EMP. The odds were heavily against T.O.T, but the result was one sided 16-3 victory for T.O.T, giving the betters large payouts. The implication was that EMP players threw the match for their bets.
Lewis followed up Thursday with another video, and the WCA released a statement addressing the situation in English. According to the statement, an investigation uncovered T.O.T was guilty of “subbing actions,” as the five T.O.T players suddenly switched to a different IP address, meaning that T.O.T apparently put five different players to play for the team in the aforementioned match without notifying the tournament. The penalty from the WCA is changing the result to a 0-2 loss for T.O.T, excluding them from the WCA 2017 CS:GO Tournament Platform Classic, and banning the five players of T.O.T for a year.
The story took another turn as screenshots surfaced of conversations showing that T.O.T was offering their services to win, lose, or change the outcome of matches for other teams to maximize betting profits. The chat logs were reported by Chinese journalists and uploaded to imgur.
Tyloo Gaming’s Chang Luo also chimed in on Lewis’ report, accusing T.O.T of outright match-fixing, and saying that EMP rejected their offer to fix the game for them. He also pointed out that the names and profile photos shown on the betting site can be easily changed to look like anything the users want.
According to Lewis’ report, there were sizable bets mysteriously appearing in favor of the underdog team outside of the two in question, which would seem to suggest there were individuals who had inside information of what was going to happen.
The manager for EMP has also spoken out on the topic on the Chinese social media website Baidu, saying that he will offer a large reward for anyone who can come up with hard evidence that ties his players to any possible match-fixing.
WCA hasn’t pointed out the other team that T.O.T “subbed” in the match against EMP, though Lewis said it easily could, given WCA has the IP addresses that were logged. The current situation is that only one team has been penalized when the details point to two teams being involved, whether the second party is the EMP players or the unknown five players who played instead of T.O.T.