MANILA, Dec 9 — Electrical engineering PhD holder, Yew Weng Kean, has made history as Malaysia’s first ever e-sports athlete to win a SEA Games gold medal at the Filoil Flying V Centre, San Juan, today.
E-sports is making its debut at the biennial event this year and the 29-year-old bagged the gold in Hearthstone — a two-player card game — by overthrowing Thailand’s Werit Popan 3-1.
In one stroke, the Heriot-Watt University assistant professor has silenced critics who say that a person who spends time playing games can’t succeed in education or career.
Yew — aka wkyew90 in the world of e-sports — started the match well by winning the first game, but was beaten in the second game to level the score 1-1.
In the third game, he had to battle hard for more than half an hour to secure the point, before easily winning the last game to pull off the historic feat.
“This gold medal means a lot to me and Malaysia, because it is our first medal for e-sports in SEA Games history. I feel amazing, happy and grateful. I believe that I am able to make history by contributing a medal to the country and I feel great to have achieved it.
“E-sports is a trend now and will stay regardless of what we do. Parents should look at it from a positive side, because gaming can actually improve your thinking, critical and strategic skills.
“These are all the necessary skills to life. But kids should have balance between gaming, healthy activities and studies. If you are gaming all the time without improvement in studies, you are not going very far,” he told Bernama after the medal presentation ceremony.
Yesterday, Malaysia won the bronze in the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang game via Ahmad Ali Huzaifi Abdullah, Abdul Wandi Abdul Kadir, Jamil Nurolla, Izme Haqeem Hamsjid and Muhammad Hazeem Onn, after they were beaten by the host 2-0.
There are six golds at stake in e-sports through Tekken 7, Starcraft II, Hearthstone, Arena of Valor, Dota 2 and Mobile Legends: Bang Bang. — Bernama