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RIYADH: The Riyadh 2023 Global Esports Games are set for some decisive match-ups on Friday night that will decide who advances to Saturday’s finals.

Hosted by the Saudi Esports Federation and presented by the Global Esports Federation, day three of the five-day flagship multi-title competition saw countries’ quests for glory and global supremacy edge closer to gripping conclusions.

The SEF Arena on Thursday saw action across three tournaments, including the long-awaited PUBG MOBILE competition.

After an impressive performance, Thailand leads the way heading into today’s finale on 90 points, followed closely by Kazakhstan and Ukraine — tied second with 88 — and Vietnam (71). Host Saudi Arabia (64) is also in contention.

“Anticipation surrounding the PUBG MOBILE tournament has been huge — and understandably so,” said Abdullah Al-Nasser, head of professional esports at the Saudi Esports Federation, in the immediate aftermath of day three.

“PUBG MOBILE has been downloaded over 1 billion times and is the most-watched mobile esports game on the planet — so it’s obviously thrilling to watch 16 of the world’s elite teams go head to head in a round-robin shootout. The tournament certainly lived up to the hype and we can’t wait for more on Friday. Another dramatic day awaits with the latter stages of other tournaments also scheduled.”

The Dota 2 women’s competition also entered the fray with eight nations beginning their campaigns in the high-stakes single-elimination event. Facing off in best-of-three matchups, Malaysia beat Thailand 2-0 to set up a semifinal with Argentina, who beat Turkey 2-0.

The other side of the draw also witnessed two straight-set victories as Peru and Chile set up a last-four clash after overcoming New Zealand and Kenya, respectively. The Dota 2 women’s event continues today with the final locked in for tomorrow.

Elsewhere at GEG23, the eFootball 2024 last 16 lineup was completed as the last chance qualifiers stage took place. After 12 teams booked their place in the knockout rounds on Wednesday alongside Spain, Mexico and host Saudi Arabia, one more spot was up for grabs.

Panama beat Japan, Malaysia and Luxembourg in best-of-three match-ups to top the group and progress. eFootball 2024 continues today with the last 16, quarterfinals and semifinals all taking place before tomorrow’s final. In Friday’s opening round of fixtures, Saudi Arabia faces the UAE in an exciting last-16 clash.

 

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