Gamers around the world were up in arms yesterday after it was revealed that the organisers of a Hearthstone tournament in Finland had purposely banned women from attending in an effort “to promote e-Sports as a legitimate sport”, but the organisers have now reportedly reversed this decision.

A screenshot of the announcement of the Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft tournament taking place during Finland’s Assembly Summer 2014 International e-Sports Federation’s (IeSF) Qualifier,was posted on Reddit with the line “The competition is only open to Finnish  male players” highlighted in blue.

ss (2014-07-01 at 06.54.24)“In accordance with the International e-Sports Federation’s (IeSF) tournament regulations, since the main tournament event is open to male players only. This is to avoid possible conflicts (eg a female player eliminating a male player during RO8) among other things,” (sic) head admin of the Assembly Summer 2014 Hearthstone IeSF Qualifier, Markus Koskivirta told PC Gamer.

The competition rules originally stated that females were only to allowed to enter the Starcraft 2 and Tekken Tag Tournament 2 competition, while men were allowed to enter Dota 2, Starcraft 2, Hearthstone and Ultra Street Fighter IV.

In a contradictory statement to PC Gamer, Koskivirta also said that the Finnish eSports Federation is currently lobbying for the equal rights of male and female players in the IeSF tournaments.

Fortunately some sense was knocked into the organiser’s heads, and general manager of international relations at the IeSF Alex Lim has come out to apologise on behalf of the IeSF and make the official announcement that the gender segregation has now been removed. The tournament announcement page now reads “The participation is open only to Finnish players,” and “Update: The gender restriction rule has been removed, we thank everyone who took part in this process”.

That’s one point for female gamers, don’t do it again Finland.

[Source – VG 24/7. Image –]