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Overwatch League teams Shanghai Dragons and Guangzhou Charge have decided to relocate their players and staff from China to South Korea to ensure the safety of their team from the coronavirus, while Chengdu Hunters have decided to stay in China.
The relocation to South Korea comes only a week before the third season of the Overwatch League begins.
“Our priority is to ensure the safety of all our players and staff along with providing the best possible environment for them to practice in,” Shanghai Dragons wrote in its official statement. “As such, after taking into consideration our match and practice schedule, we will be temporarily relocating all our players and coaching staff to Korea effective immediately.”
“We have maintained close contact with the league throughout the past few weeks and hope to be able to provide you with updates soon,” the Shanghai Dragons wrote.
Guangzhou Charge also released a statement stating it’s the best decision to protect their players, “We believe that this is the best course for our team, after looking at factors such as uncertainties around the epidemic, uncertainties around how our schedule will be impacted, geographic considerations, and how best to protect our players given how quickly things change on a day-to-day basis.”
Chengdu Hunters on the other hand have decided to stay in China despite the current epidemic. Although the team will remain in China they will take extreme precautions in keeping their players and staff safe.
“all members will return to the base at once. Upon arrival, all personnel will have their temperatures checked and undergo full-body disinfection.” The team said.
Shanghai Dragons are expected to host their first home games of the season in Shanghai on February 15. Up until now neither the Overwatch League nor Shanghai Dragons canceled or rescheduled the event, but concerns in regards to the coronavirus and the safety of the players might end up with the rescheduling of the event.
Both Shanghai Dragons and Guangzhou Charge stated in their announcement that they have maintained close contact with the league throughout the past few weeks and hope to be able to provide an with updates soon.