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According to a competitive ruling from Riot Games, Beyond Gaming’s mid laner Chien “Maoan” Moa-An has been suspended from the rest of Worlds 2021 for violations of rule 9.3, which prohibits association with gambling.

“During the 2021 World Championship, Maoan violated Rule 9.3 of the 2021 World Championship Ruleset, which prohibits association with gambling,” the ruling said. “Competitive integrity is the foundation for our sport and we take all violations of our ruleset extremely seriously. The Competitive Operations team obtained definitive evidence showing Maoan provided inside information to a friend for the purposes of wagering on today’s matches. Maoan will be suspended for the remainder of the 2021 World Championship, and may be subject to additional penalties following a full investigation.”

Rule 9.3 specifically states, “Association with Gambling: No Team Member or WCE official may take part, either directly or indirectly, in betting or gambling on any results of any WCE game, match or tournament.”

Allegations first broke out on social media, as pictures of a chat with Maoan allegedly telling his friend the champions his team was likely to pick so the friend could bet on them.

Later on, BYG’s owner Xue “DinTer” Hong-Wei confirmed in a Facebook post that investigations on the incident were ongoing, according to a translation by Bonnie Qu. The statement reads as follows:

“Today is a difficult day, both in and out of game. Whatever comes next will be according to Riot’s rules. If we can continue playing I will ask everyone to keep playing all the matches so as not to let their hard work go to waste. We will discuss Maoan’s punishment after the game so it doesn’t affect the team’s mood right now. As for the people making fake accounts to insinuate that I knew about the gambling and covered it up, you must have hard evidence to dare to say this, right? Please show it to me. I’ll give you 10 million dollars. Before the game Maoan leaked that he would pick Orianna and Sylas, but today he didn’t pick either of them, so you must have lost badly, right? You should be broke now, right? There’s 10 million dollars up for grabs here. If you can’t back your claim up then can you make an apology instead? Finally, this incident is still being investigated. Right now what we know is that before the match, Maoan told his friends there was a high probability he would pick Orianna and Sylas for betting information, but Maoan himself didn’t take part in betting, nor did he ask to pick those two characters during pick/ban. I think everyone who got this information from Maoan and used it for betting have involved themselves in the law. I will try my best to seek them all out. I won’t protect the player who was involved, but I also don’t want everyone else’s effort to be for nothing. I think it’s impossible to strike that balance, so all I can do is apologize to everyone who is disappointed or angry. Maybe the player involved in the scandal will play tomorrow, or maybe our team will lose all hope of continuing to fight. Whatever happens, I can only say that I apologize, and I’m sorry.”

What’s next for Beyond Gaming?

Beyond Gaming came into Worlds 2021 with a 6 man roster, which includes top laner, Hsieh “PK” Yu-Ting. Maoan’s immediate disqualification from the tournament means the BYG are left with no option other than to play the series against Hanwha Life Esports on Saturday with him somewhere in their lineup. As a result, they must play the best-of-five series without a proper mid laner.

Additionally, PK has only played five games in the Pacific Championship Series’ summer split, and he has not played as a full time starter since 2020. His most played champions across his career are all top laners, including Ornn, Gnar and Aatrox. However, based on his solo queue EUW account for Worlds, he has played at least a few games on Sylas.

Beyond Gaming at Worlds

Before this incident, Beyond Gaming had just barely defeated Galatasaray Esports in a reverse sweep to set up their Saturday best-of-five against Hanwha Life Esports. Earlier, BYG finished 1-3 in Group B with their only win in the initial round robin against Unicorns of Love. Then, when Cloud9 lost their final match to the Unicorns of Love, Beyond Gaming were forced into tiebreaker match to determine which team would be sent home from Worlds 2021.

Jimoh Rashidat is a freelance esports writer with over two years of experience. She covers FIFA, League of Legends and general gaming content.
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