French Apex player Elwin “KSWINNIIE” Echeveria, who plays for Element 6, has tested positive for COVID before the second day of the ALGS Championship.
After a solid performance in yesterday’s Group Stage matches that left Element 6 tied for 13th place overall, KSWINNIIE experienced a headache overnight and subsequently tested positive for COVID with a rapid test upon entering the venue. Element 6 announced on Twitter he would be taking a PCR test to further determine his eligibility to play. In the meantime, the organization has recruited AlphaDraft as a substitute.
KSWINNIE’s positive test is only the latest development in COVID-related issues at the ALGS Championship in Raleigh, North Carolina. While there is no vaccine requirement in the ALGS, pros must test negative with a rapid test to compete. As of yesterday, 10 players hoping to play in the tournament had tested positive and were therefore unable to play. Though some teams have gelled with their substitutes, the stand-ins often have little or no experience playing with the rest of the team. Some pros in attendance have even begun advertising their services on social media in the likely event that more players will test positive before the end of the tournament.
The situation has also been complicated by the addition of fans, many of whom are eager to finally meet players after nearly three years of watching them online. There is no mask requirement inside the venue, and the vast majority of attendees are not wearing them despite the recent surge of the new, easily transmissible BA.5 variant of the virus.
The ALGS Championship continues this weekend, concluding with the final rounds on July 10 at 4pm CT.