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Riot Games announced on Wednesday (5 May) that the 2021 League of Legends (LoL) World Championship, more commonly referred to as Worlds, will be hosted in Shenzen, China from 6 November.
Worlds 2021 will be held in Shenzen's Universiade Sports Centre, a state-of-the-art arena with a seating capacity of over 60,000 that is also the home of the Chinese Super League football club Shenzen F.C.
Shenzen, the fifth largest city in China, was chosen by Riot to host this year's iteration of Worlds due to its position as "a leading financial centre in the Asia-Pacific region" fuelled by its "four pillar industries of high technology, finance, logistics, and culture".
Riot added that they aim to deliver a "top-tier entertainment experience not yet seen in esports history" for Worlds 2021 against the backdrop of "the prismatic architecture and design of the venue and Shenzhen’s Silicon Valley-esque ecosystem and modern flair."
“We’re extremely excited to push the boundaries of entertainment and sport this year with Worlds 2021 and define the next 10 years of LoL Esports.
Shenzhen is China’s most competitive and innovative city with thousands of high-tech startups and entrepreneurial pursuits, so we felt that it was the perfect landscape to host our Finals,” John Needham, Global Head of Esports for Riot Games, said in a press release.
Worlds 2021 will mark the third time that China has hosted LoL's biggest annual tournament. The country hosted Worlds for the first time in 2017 in the Beijing National Stadium in its capital, Beijing, while last year's tournament was held in the Shanghai Stadium in Shanghai, with South Korea's DAMWON Gaming emerging as champions.
China has emerged as one of the strongest scenes in LoL over the years, with two Chinese teams claiming the mantle of world champions — namely Invictus Gaming in 2018 and FunPlus Phoenix in 2019.
World 2021 will be preceded by the 2021 Mid-Season Invitational, which will be held from 6 to 23 May in the Laugardalshöll indoor sporting arena in Reykjavík, Iceland.
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