After an Adderall scandal at a Counter Strike tournament earlier this year, the Electronic Sports League (ESL) has shared new details regarding their drug-testing policies.
Marijuana is one of the many substances now banned by the ESL. A comprehensive list of banned substances was created in partnership with the German-based Nationale Anti-Doping Agentur.
The ESL had planned to implement skin tests, but later settled for saliva tests after consulting various experts. “How invasive the method of testing is, and how reliable will the results be, and how quickly will we get them?” said the ESL in regards to drug testing.
It is also important to note that the ESL has only prohibited marijuana usage during a tournament. They have said they will not punish players for marijuana usage before a tournament begins.
These random saliva tests will first be used at ESL One Cologne. It is possible the ESL will expand the scope of the aforementioned drug tests, making them regular procedure.
The ESL said the following in regards to future drug policy: “We don’t want to exclude the possibility of performing a larger number of tests among all/majority of players at a later stage. Should the testing policy and method change, we will inform the players accordingly.”
Should a player be caught under the influence of any illicit substance, the ESL has said it will review each instance on a case-by-case basis. Penalties could range from the seizing of prize money, disqualification, or even a full ban from ESL events.