ESPN5 introduces the Road to The Nationals, a search for Esports Pro Athletes in the Philippines

Written by Contributor

July 31, 2018

The Nationals, the first-ever esports franchise model league in the country set to launch in 2019, introduces the Road to The Nationals, a series of esports tournament qualifiers held nationwide. This starts on August 4.

From the tournaments – DOTA2 for PC, Mobile Legends for mobile, and, a console game to be announced in September – eight teams from each game are selected through the initial rounds. Those that qualify will get the chance to be drafted and sponsored by the pioneer teams of The Nationals. Aside from this, there is a prize pool worth millions of pesos at stake for the three games.

Six corporate partners (i.e. TNC Pro Team, HappyFeet eSports, BrenPro Inc., Cignal TV Inc., PLDT/Smart Communications, and STI Education Systems) have committed as founding teams of The Nationals, and are looking to discover the best esports athletes around the country through ESPN5’s campaign.

“We are using the Road to The Nationals as the pool of talent to build the teams in The Nationals,” says Vincent P. Reyes, President and CEO of TV5. “This is esports like never before.  Aspiring esports athletes now have a chance to get into a sustainable playing career.  This is their time to seize the opportunity.”

“The Road to The Nationals’ DOTA2, Mobile Legends, and console game tournaments are all part of our NSA’s thrust to grow esports in the Philippines,” says Joebert Yu, the president of the newly established National Sports Association (NSA) for esports, the Esports National Association of the Philippines (ESNAP).

“The three separate tournaments are ESNAP tournaments. This is officially the biggest push to elevate Philippine esports.”

The Road to The Nationals, also, has the distinction of being the first local grassroots esports tournament to be featured on free television. Powered by PLDT-Smart, the Road to The Nationals regional tournaments and the Grand Finals will all be aired exclusively under the ESPN5 banner on TV5.

The Qualifiers for the Road to The Nationals will be held at the following dates and locations:


PC Game: DOTA2 Regional Qualifiers

  • August 4, 2018 – TNC Morayta
  • August 11, 2018 – SM Seaside Cebu
  • August 25, 2018 – Cagayan de Oro Cybersquare Café
  • September 22, 2018 – TNC Bacolod
  • September 29, 2018 – Localhost Café, KBEN Building, MH Del Pilar, Iloilo
  • October 13, 2018 – UGZ – 137 Nueno Avenue, Poblacion 1A Imus, Cavite
  • Grand Finals: October 27-28, 2018 – ESGS, SMX Convention Center, Pasay City

Mobile Game: Mobile Legends  

Console Game: NBA2K19 or Tekken 7 (tentative)

  • Announcement on dates of NBA2K19 or Tekken7 Qualifiers will be released by September 2018.

For more information on The Nationals and the Road to The Nationals, visit

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