KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 30 — IT firm S2 Co has launched Japan's first professional electronic sports (eSports) team made up of senior citizens.

Called Matagi Snipers, the team, based at Akita Prefecture, consists of men and women aged between 66 and 73, who focus on playing shooting games.

Yahoo! JP reported that the members had been training three times weekly since July and are currently preparing for their first live stream on either YouTube or Twitch in October.

It also plans to participate in competitions and events from April next year.

NHK reported that the team's eight members were chosen from 21 people who applied to join after judging their gaming aptitude.

The team was established to show the health benefits of eSports and to impress the elderly's grandchildren.

One of the team members, identified as Eba, told NHK that she noticed the benefits of gaming including improvement in her cognitive abilities, hand-eye coordination, and communication with her teammates.

Thirty-eight percent of Akita Prefecture's total population are aged 65 and above, which is the highest in Japan's average.