Who Is Magnetbrain? Former Valorant Pro Who Earned Gold at the Tokyo Paralympics
Rowan “magnetbrain” Crothers is an Australian Valorant pro who just won a gold medal at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics’ swimming event. He was formerly a part of Pants Down, a Valorant team based in Oceania, and he qualified for the LetsPlay.Live (LPL) Challengers last year. After the tournament, magnetbrain took a break from Valorant to prepare himself for the Tokyo Paralympics. He managed to win a gold medal in swimming at the event while diagnosed with cerebral palsy. It looks like magnetbrain does not let his condition hinder him in swimming or esports.
Magnetbrain’s journey from Valorant to the Olympics
After competing with Pants Down in 2020, magnetbrain started preparing for the Tokyo Paralympics 2021. He managed to win a gold medal at the Men’s 50m freestyle swimming event and he also won the 4x100 men’s relay swimming event with his Paralympics team. He also participated in the men’s 100m freestyle event and earned the silver medal.
Magnetbrain was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at a young age and he took up swimming at the age of seven. He started competing in Para swimming in 2009. He grew an interest in Paralympic sport after watching Australian Para athlete, Peter Leek win a gold medal at the 2008 Paralympic Games.
His bio in the International Paralympic Committee reads, "I have always been bad at sports but I always loved swimming. I had to swim with the beginners for a very long time because the cerebral palsy affected my stroke and I got really sad having to swim with the six-year-olds when I was 10. When I saw the Paralympic Games, I realized that I could be a great swimmer, just different. I want other kids with disabilities to know they can be great swimmers too."
His in-game name, “magnetbrain” which he uses to compete in Valorant, is actually a nickname he got when he used to play water polo back in 2014. He was able to stop a ball from entering the goal with his head, which is what led to his nickname.
His other achievements include being named 2014’s Junior Male Athlete of the Year and Senior Male Athlete of the Year by the Sporting Wheelies and Disabled Association in Queensland, Australia. He was also named 2012/13 Best Para Swimmer by the Brisbane Swimming Association in Queensland, Australia. In 2020, he appeared in a documentary named 'No Distinguishing Features', a film that is based on six individuals with impairments. He has also served as a youth ambassador for the Cerebral Palsy League in Australia.