Counter-Strike: Global Offensive professional player Nikhil ‘forsaken’ Kumawat has been caught cheating during the eXTREMESLAND Asia Finals, causing an immediate disqualification for OpTic India. Unfortunately, the organisation has not only responded by unceremoniously firing Kumawat, but disbanding its entire CS:GO roster.
OpTic India’s match against Vietnamese team Revolution was paused for approximately 20 minutes after officials noticed suspicious activity from Kumawat. Upon attempting to investigate his system by demanding that he revert to desktop, Kumawat not only tried to delete the illicit software, he also refused the inspection by pushing the admin away.
— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) October 19, 2018
As a result, OpTic India was immediately disqualified from the $1,000 tournament, resulting in a default win for Revolution. Kumawat was subsequently booted from the team, with many reflecting on his past accusations. Several have claimed to have seen suspicious plays as early as 2017, when a practice scrim against Tyloo revealed Kumawat’s lock-on aimbot.
This isn’t the first time that Kumawat has been banned, however. The Esports Integrity Coalition (ESIC) initially found that he was guilty of owning an account banned by Valve Anit-Cheat (VAC), issuing a two-year ban from ESL and disqualifying his team at the time, SemperX. Kumawat appealed, stating that the account had been sold and therefore wasn’t him that was supposedly cheating. This was accepted by the ESIC, however it was still in breach of Valve’s terms and conditions, forcing Kumawat to serve a six-month sentence for Steam Account Sharing.
— OpTic India (@OpTicIndia) October 19, 2018
“We stand strongly against any form of cheating as it not only tarnishes the local roster, but potentially harms competitive integrity in the region,” explains OpTic’s official announcement following the shake-up. “We have terminated Nikhil ‘forsaken’ Kumawat’s contract for his actions. At this time we are also releasing the remaining roster to pursue new opportunities with other competitive options.”
OpTic Gaming international development director Jesal Parekh emphasised in his statement to HLTV.org that “the other four players had no knowledge of this and would never have agreed to even play if there was even the slightest hint of it.” The move instead suggests that OpTic will be taking a break from the CS:GO competitive scene in hopes that India’s esports efforts don’t suffer too much as a result of a single player’s actions.
KitGuru Says: Hopefully the remaining OpTic players can find a new home for their talents, as they have well and truly impressed despite Kumawat’s heinous actions. It’s uncertain how this will affect the CS:GO competitive scene moving forward, although many think that this will carry implications.