Sandrock Gaming will not compete at the RLCS Winter Major, Psyonix announced on Tuesday. After issues with acquiring U.S. visas for the Saudi players, the team can’t make it to the event in time. The tournament will continue as a 15-team event.
“Leading up to the RLCS Winter Major, Psyonix worked to secure all necessary travel documentation and visas required for teams to travel to Los Angeles,” Psyonix said. “Due to both personal reasons and complexities introduced in the visa process, Sandrock Gaming unfortunately will not be able to travel to the United States. We allowed for as much time for the situation to resolve as possible, but the circumstances were ultimately out of our control.”
Winter Major Team Update pic.twitter.com/ylZuwwRr30
— Rocket League Esports (@RLEsports) March 22, 2022
Sandrock Gaming stays home, CEO INCIVIK steps down
Sandrock Gaming was expected to be a top contender after finishing among the top eight at the Fall Major in Stockholm, Sweden, where they played with a sub. The full squad would have been available for this event, potentially increasing their chances of performing well even more.
The MENA team would have also been making their debut in front of a crowd at the Winter Major, provided they made it into the playoffs. Now the players will have to wait for the Spring Split for their next chance.
As a result of their “Did Not Participate” status, Sandrock Gaming will receive 120 RLCS Points toward World Championship qualification, equivalent to finishing in 13-16th place at the Winter Major.
SRG founder and CEO INCIVIK tried to get the players to the event until the last moment.
“Long story short we applied for the visas since the third, and the American embassy has not respected our emergency visa request until last week,” INCIVIK said days ahead of the official disqualification announcement.
Our mission at SRG was to put MENA on the map, we did that and I couldn’t be prouder of the boys. With that being said, i'm stepping down as CEO of the org. Good luck on your future endeavours, you’re this country's pride and joy 💚
— R1 INCIVIK (@incivik) March 22, 2022
Along with the news came the unexpected announcement of INCIVIK’s departure as CEO of the organization. The owner, who is known only under his alias, is considered a legend of the scene, having organized and funded a large number of tournaments. His contribution to Middle Eastern Rocket League allowed the players to remain among the world’s best despite not being able to play in the RLCS until this season.
His replacement has not yet been announced, and there is “no news yet” on that front, according to INCIVIK.