LONDON: Targeted testing of esports competitors is leading to a rethink about drug cheating in online gaming and which stimulants are more widespread, according to anti-doping expert Michele Verroken.
The former head of anti-doping at UK Sport, Verroken now runs the Sporting Integrity consultancy and carries out tests at a number of tournaments for the Esports Integrity Coalition (ESIC).
Adderall, a prescription amphetamine used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), has long been a concern since a gamer in the United States claimed in 2015 that it was the drug of choice. Sometimes referred to as the ‘Study Drug’ because of student misuse, it also has properties that keep the user calm, awake and energised.
Marijuana, usually classified as a recreational drug, can be performance-enhancing in esports if it helps a player relax in a stressful quick-fire environment where being too tense is a disadvantage.
Verroken carries out oral fluid tests, rather than urine as in traditional sports, targeting those stimulants that gamers are most concerned about.
Doping, along with match fixing and betting fraud, are ESIC’s main area of concern as competitive gaming, with multiple players performing in live-streamed matches, becomes ever bigger. -Reuters