Nelson gamer Bailey Murdoch has been able to hone his skills while in lockdown. Photo: Supplied.

Nelson’s pro gamer relishing lockdown


While most sports have come to a grinding halt around the globe, video games have been largely unaffected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Nelson gamer Bailey Murdoch says a perk of the lockdown has been able to play without guilt.

“Still being able to play the game while everything is going on is a plus, it gives us a reason to actually play since we can’t do a lot else so we don’t feel as guilty playing on a sunny day.”

Unlike most athletes, who are limited with resources and equipment, Bailey has actually been able to improve his game during isolation.

“I have not been able to work which has allowed myself to spend more time on playing my game which is quite nice since I’m not bored and isolated in my house.”

He says this has allowed him to put in more hours individually and with his team, as they are all in Australia and are experiencing the same thing.

Despite the extra hours spent with a controller in hand, Bailey says the global crisis has not made life easy for him and his team.

They recently parted ways with their organisation Mindfreak and the pandemic will make signing with a new one difficult.

“We’ve been talking to a few North American organisations, but they have fallen through with the economy not being as stable and not knowing how the virus will effect investments in the future.”

Bailey and his team recently finished its Pro League season in third place and were preparing for a tournament against Asia/Pacific before a potential showdown with the best from North America, Europe and Brazil.

“Once the information was out that the virus was spreading, we knew that the chances of these events weren’t likely.”

New Zealand’s national Esports body says the industry is “about to explode”, as Covid-19 restrictions flatten its competitors in the sporting world.

Esports has been nationally recognised and the TAB has opened bets across several virtual titles for the first time.

President of the New Zealand Esports Federation says Covid-19 is showing just how resilient esports is as it can be operated from anywhere.

Following the sporting closures, the TAB said Covid-19 had created a “giant-sized hole” in its business.

To tackle this, it opened esports bets across five different games for the first time last month.

TAB customer general manager Gary Woodham says Esports are now contributing about $60,000 worth of turnover a day, up from $0.

However, he says this paled when compared with the $1 million or more rugby and basketball turned over each day.