We are happy to share the announcement that the IEM World Championship in Katowice will include the third annual Intel Challenge for the best women’s Counter-Strike: Global Offensive teams in Europe and North America. Just like last year, AnyKey is presenting this 8-team tournament in partnership with Intel and ESL.

Please go to ESLgaming.com to read more about the Intel Challenge, and sign up for the qualifiers if you and your team want to compete for one of the open spots!

The official media alert is below:


Intel® Challenge Katowice 2017 highlights world’s best women’s Counter-Strike:Global Offensive teams on the global stage

Eight of the top women’s CS:GO teams will battle for a share of $30,000 at IEM Katowice 2017

For the third year in a row, during the Intel® Extreme Masters World Championship in Katowice, Poland the best women’s Counter-Strike:Global Offensive teams will take the stage to battle for the title of Intel® Challenge Katowice champions and a share of the $30,000 prize pool. ESL, in cooperation with Intel and AnyKey—an advocacy initiative dedicated to supporting diversity and inclusion in esports—is committed to creating more opportunities and inclusive esports spaces, while advocating for the underrepresented members of competitive gaming communities.

Eight women’s CS:GO teams from across Europe and North America will play in the Intel Challenge on March 2-3, 2017 during the second weekend of the IEM World Championship. The group stages of the tournament will be held on Thursday, March 2, 2017 with the playoffs on Friday, March 3, 2017.

Invited Teams
Two teams from Europe and two teams from North America will be directly invited to the Intel Challenge Katowice 2017. Invitations will be announced in the coming weeks.

Three online qualifiers will determine the final four participants of the Intel Challenge Katowice. The schedule for the upcoming tournaments is as follows:

  • January 28-29 – EU Qualifier #1 – 2 slots
  • February 4-5 – EU Qualifier #2 – 1 slot
  • February 4-5 – NA Qualifier #1 – 1 slot

IEM returns to Katowice, Poland, for the fifth year in a row with the 2017 World Championship, bringing the 11th season of the longest running esports circuit in the world to its conclusion. The elite gaming competitions will span two consecutive weekends for the first time, with League of Legends on the main stage February 25 – 26, and CS:GO and StarCraft II competitions on March 3 – 5 in addition to the IEM Expo.

Tickets to IEM Katowice 2017 are free of charge, but early bird tickets are on sale now. Follow IEM on Twitter and Facebook to stay up to date on the latest World Championship news and follow AnyKey on Twitter and Facebook for more information on inclusivity and diversity in competitive gaming.


ESL, a part of the international digital entertainment group MTG, is the world’s largest esports company, leading the industry across the most popular video games with numerous online and offline competitions. It operates high profile, branded international and national leagues and tournaments such as the Intel® Extreme Masters, ESL One, ESL National Championships and other top tier stadium-size events, as well as grassroots amateur cups, leagues and matchmaking systems. ESL covers a broad field of services in gaming technology, event management, advertising and television production, fully catering to the needs of the esports ecosystem. With offices in North America, Germany, Russia, France, Poland, Spain, China, and partners in many other countries, it has a truly global footprint (www.eslgaming.com).

Intel® Extreme Masters is the longest running global pro gaming tour in the world. Started in 2006 by ESL, the competition features StarCraft II and League of Legends tournaments in Europe, Asia, North and South America. ESL’s online broadcast of the Intel Extreme Masters reaches over 40 million viewers on Twitch each season (www.intelextrememasters.com).

AnyKey is an advocacy initiative dedicated to supporting diversity and inclusion in esports. Research efforts and a variety of programs aim to foster welcoming spaces and positive opportunities for competitive players of all kinds. Ongoing projects include research workshops and published white papers, consultation with esports programs and gaming organizations, gender-inclusive tournaments like the Intel® Challenge, video content highlighting diverse esports role models, and direct support for grassroots community initiatives. AnyKey is made possible through a partnership between Intel and ESL. To learn more, please visit www.anykey.org.