The midday sun blazes outside but it’s dark in the Sun Arena at Time Square in Pretoria. The only illumination comes from the bright pink and purple artificial lighting and the backlights of screens that cast a neon glow on the faces of the gamers in front of them. At first glance, what’s going on inside this arena doesn’t seem at all comparable with what takes place at the city’s other sporting stronghold, Loftus Versfeld. But don’t be fooled by the lack of blue face paint, rucks and Steve Hofmeyr songs; Rush is one of the country’s biggest annual tournaments, dedicated to the world’s fastest growing sport, e-sports. E-sports is the competitive practice of video games among teams of professional players and, yes, it’s a real sport. Usually, when I venture that statement, I get a stern finger waved at me. "All that Mario and Luigi business is not a sport, it’s brain-rotting nonsense." Stern finger goes on to insist that a sport is an activity that requires you to be outside, while a...

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