"Cyan, JieShi, Route, and Nice have been disqualified from WCS Winter 2019 and banned from Blizzard Esports competition until May 31, 2019.* During the ladder race of WCS Winter—Americas, Route played several suspicious matches with cyan, JieShi, and Nice. Upon review of these matches and accounts in question, it was found that several of the matches were intentionally lost by Route to the other three players involved. Nice, cyan, and JieShi were found to be colluding to intentionally trade wins with the Route account. Finally, it was discovered that both cyan and JieShi were logging into the Route account during the competition as part of this effort. This behavior is prohibited in our tournament rules under section 6.2.a. Specifically, players are prohibited from “collusion, match fixing or any other action to intentionally alter, or attempt to alter [any game], including losing a game or match with another player in order to advance one or the other’s rank,” as well as “allowing an individual who is not the registered owner of a Battle.net account to play on that Battle.net account in StarCraft II or any other Blizzard game.” Based on this disqualification, Max "Astrea" Angel, Maru "MaSa" Kim, and Erik “Erik” Braga Bermelho will qualify for WCS Winter from their ladder rankings at the conclusion of the ladder race."
Update: Jan 14
I feel like this situation merits a thread of its own.
As many of you know, WCS winter has been announced and it started with a ladder qualifier that concluded recently. TL thread:
Now EU looks fairly normal, however the NA server was notable because it was extremely extremely close, as seen below:
On January 14 2019 15:09 ZigguratOfUr wrote:
Reddit user Jjangbi made a topic about suspicious activity, namely a relatively unknown player named Route has very quick and strange losses, I will just copy paste what he wrote:
"I'd like to draw some attention to some suspicious games during the closing hours of the NA WCS ladder race. Route has several suspicious losses specifically to Chinese/Taiwanese players at the final hours of the race.
vs cyan, 0 second game literally at the last second to put cyan into top 8.
vs Nice, 1:50 cannon rush
vs JieShi, 2:21 cannon rush
vs Nice, 0:29
vs Has, looks like a legit game
vs JieShi, 2:00 cannon rush
vs Nice, 0:17
I'd like to see some more investigation from Blizzard before going forward with finalizing the results. It seems like lag isn't an issue either, where he seems to be beating others just fine, just losing these suspicious games vs specific players. Can Route explain himself on these games?
Another suspicious point is that cyan was in top 8 during the day. He was eventually bumped out of top 8 later on. He only played 1 game between 3pm EST and midnight. That game was at 11:58 PM EST and a 0 second game vs Route to put himself into top 8."
Reddit user Hjax provided further details, which (for me at least) proves it beyond a reasonable doubt that it is indeed match-fixing at the very least, and very likely account-sharing was used to achieve it.
"Route lost 12 games today:
3 to PartinG (an excellent player)
5 Games to Nice (including several cannon rushes and instant leaves)
2 games to JieShi
1 Game to Cyan (an Instant leave)
1 Game to Has (looks like a normal game)
Route is normally a 5.6kish player on NA, who has played in online cups and ladder, and he is not historically a 6.2k player, but right now is at 6127 MMR, which is unusually high for him. Yet today he 2-0d future, beat DemiLove many times, and Raze as well, yet lost every single game he played against a Chinese/Taiwanese player. You can see his MMR spiked recently as well: https://www.rankedftw.com/team/4911666/#td=world&ty=c&ra=best&tyz=1&tx=60&tl=1
The whole comment:
From the reddit thread we know that both of them submitted these findings to Blizzard, alleging match-fixing.