Esports photoshoot injury knocks out star player

Zhang Ruida, aka Faith_bian (Courtesy Turtle Entertain.)

A top-tier professional gamer has suffered a serious injury at a Macau-based esports tournament and is currently receiving medical care in Shanghai.

Zhang Ruida, who goes by the screen name “Faith_bian”, was injured during a photoshoot session on Tuesday ahead of the four-day MDL Macau tournament organized by Mars Media and hosted at Galaxy Entertainment Group’s Broadway Macau. According to industry sources, Zhang has suffered a shoulder dislocation.

The esports player was quickly hospitalized in Macau, before flying back to Shanghai to receive further medical care.

Organizer Mars Media issued a statement explaining the incident and apologizing for Zhang’s injury.

“It’s with regrets that we announce that EHOME’s offlaner, Zhang “Faith_bian” Ruida has been hospitalized following an injury suffered during the photoshoot of MDL Macau, and will therefore not participate at the event,” the statement read.

“We sincerely apologize to Zhang Ruida for the injury caused due to attending our photoshoot, but also to EHOME and all the fans. We wish him a speedy recovery, and hope to see him back at events very soon.”

Tuesday’s injury is the second setback for the EHOME team after it was announced that one of its star players, Li “ASD” Zhiwen, would miss out on the MDL Macau group stage “due to a Hong Kong and Macau Passport delivery [delay] issue.”

MDL Macau 2019 pits eight competitive esports teams against one another to fight for their share of a USD300,000 prize pool.

The tournament kicked off yesterday at Broadway Macau with a round robin qualifying group stage. The top four squads at made it to the playoff upper bracket while the bottom four are starting in the lower bracket.

The injured Zhang is a professional Dota 2 player on the China-based EHOME team. He is currently in the third position on the team’s active player squad, having joined in May 2017.

The 20-year-old professional gamer is regarded as a fast-rising star within the esports industry. According to industry figures, Zhang has accumulated personal earnings surpassing the $2 million mark since his 2014 debut on the professional scene. His most notable tournament performance was during The International 2016 in Seattle, when Zhang secured the top spot and earned more than $9 million for his previous team, Wings Gaming.

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