CBLOL: Finally The Women Came HomeGamerCBLOL: Finally The Women Came
Finally, CBLOL opens the doors for women to participate in the championship, both in the role of casters and players. So let’s recap their journey on one of the most important circuits in Brazil.
It’s not new that the public has been calling for greater representation of women in transitions and on the League of Legends teams that make up the CBLOL. Despite a few performances, they were always very shy and often the girls involved didn’t have the space they needed to show their potential. But now it looks like the situation is about to change.
Predominantly male environment
The game was officially introduced in Brazil in 2012 and has since become a sport predominantly presented by men. However, as the game grew, and particularly as the female audience grew, it became clear that more appropriate communication was needed. It’s worth remembering that Riot suffered from criticism of the extremely sexist atmosphere backstage, possibly caused by the young age of the contestants and the lack of female representation.
In 2017, CBLOL streamer hired Tawna as host and reporter, remaining in that role until 2019 when she was replaced by Rafaela Tomasi. However, their presence wasn’t really effective as the interviews were very short and to the point and they hardly had a chance to show their talent there.
Speaking of representation on teams, in 2015 we had the first player to join CBLOL, Geovana “Revy” Moda, who joined the extinct KaBuM! Black, but she didn’t really play as she was only in reserve.
2020 the year of change.
In 2020, Riot began putting women in more interesting positions for CBLOL, including two commentators on the show After the Nexus. Riot introduced Letícia Motta and Ravena Dutra without making a fuss, but they managed to make themselves felt with their opinions and positions.
In this weekly show, Letícia and Ravena discussed the games of the week along with other commentators and professional players. Both received critical acclaim from the public and for the first time women had a voice in an official CBLOL program.
Also in 2020, Rasga hired Gabriela “Harumi” for the challenging circuit, and she became the first woman to actually play an official match at CBLOL (although it was only one). In the same year, Júlia “Mayumi” was hired by INTZ. Although Mayumi wasn’t officially playing, she made a lot of noise on social media, showing that women are missed in competition and that they are a huge audience to reach out to.
Moving to 2021
In 2021 we entered the franchise system, which gives teams playing for the championship more security now that they can no longer be relegated. This allows teams to create a better structure instead of just thinking about the outcomes at stake. Another change was the introduction of the Academy system, where B teams play to promote themselves.
These changes bring with them the possibility for a team to bet more on women in competition. With that in mind, there is more time to work on the structure around players, giving them the opportunity to progress and not be held hostage to past results. Because of this change, 5 women took part in competitions in 2021.
The official signings were Ariel “Ari” and Larissa “Lawi” who were inducted into the academy from Cruzeiro Esports. In addition, the tournament confirmed the presence of players Gabriela “Harumi”, who will remain in Resga for at least one more split, Elizabeth “Liz”, who will join LOUD, and Tainá “Yatsu”, who debuted in Loading League for INTZ.
Although the girls are much more integrated into the academies, it is visible that there is a real movement that gives them the opportunity to develop and play competitively. This shows that hiring staff may not just be a marketing ploy as it used to be. Also, these girls are the first to leave the narrow circle of professional players, but they need to open doors for others to do the same.
in front of the cameras
The change also happens in front of the cameras because in 2021 the Casters team will have 3 women in its composition. These include commentator Ravena Dutra, official tournament officials, as well as Layze “Lahgolas” and Maria Júlia “Fogueta” who will be commentating on the Academy games.
Finally a shift is happening as women now make up nearly 50% of the Casters roster. This means not only representativeness, but a different vision, something really necessary in an environment that is often described as toxic.
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