Team Secret's Hamez To Retire from Wild Rift Esports Scene
Team’s Secret’s League of Legends: Wild Rift team captain James “Hamez” Santos announced that he is retiring from the esports scene. The pressure of being a pro player reportedly took a toll on Hamez’ mental health, making him consider retiring from playing competitively. This is also the reason why Hamez was not able to join Team Secret in the Wild Rift Champions Southeast Asia (WCS) 2022 - Philippines (PH). The team captain also explained that he lost his passion to play Wild Rift competitively which may affect the team’s overall performance if he continued to compete under Team Secret. Despite his decision to retire, Hamez may return to pro play sometime in the future once he has resolved his personal issues.
Hamez considers retiring due to personal issues
After an amazing performance last year, Team Secret’s Wild Rift squad had a surprisingly lackluster performance in this year’s WCS 2022 PH. The team finished 5-6th place after a 2-3 loss against GrindSky Esports in the lower Bracket Quarter-finals.
On 9th April, team captain and support player Hamez revealed that he has been dealing with personal issues throughout the tournament. In a Facebook post, he wrote, “It's unfortunate that I lost to my demons and I can't go on anymore. It's something I know I would regret in the future. So for now, I want to prioritize my sanity and find myself [be]cause I'm lost.”
Hamez added that the pressure of being a pro player coupled with people’s expectations crept in and affected his passion and determination to win. As a result, Hamez has decided to leave the team so as to not drag his team down.
“I realized that I've been working so hard all my life just to be where I'm at right now and I'm throwing it all away just because I got scared of people's expectations towards me and my expectations towards myself that got amplified by my anxiety.”
The team captain apologized to his teammates for abandoning them during the most crucial Wild Rift tournament. While the pro player has decided to retire from the pro scene, Team Secret will still be keeping its doors open for Hamez if he wishes to return to the pro scene once again.
“I know that I don't have the right to feel bad that my team didn't make it to the next tournament because I wasn't there for them during those hard times and I sincerely apologize, and at the same time thank them and our boss for giving me another chance to comeback, a chance that would not be taken for granted, and I promise that when I return, I will never run away again.”
Mental stress has always been one of the common issues in the esports scene. Players may have different reactions and coping mechanisms. But high expectations from fans, anxiety, and stress are likely to affect their performances in tournaments. Esports organizations need to consider taking care of their pro players’ mental health.
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