VALORANT Champions 2021 is about to begin on Wednesday, December 1, but a Team Liquid member has tested positive for COVID-19, and now, Riot Games has issued a statement about the positive result from the participants' mandatory antigen testing.
According to multiple sources via Upcomer, the person who tested positive for COVID-19 is the newest member of Team Liquid's VALORANT roster, Nabil "Nivera" Benrlitom.
Alex Francois, VALORANT's Global Head of Competitive Operations, shared a statement on social media, confirming the news and explaining the policy of the event if a player returns with a positive result. According to the policy, if the player feels well enough to compete and chooses to play, the affected team and their opponent will play the scheduled match on a LAN network built in the quarantine facilities, and the player who tested positive will compete from an isolated room while their teammates and the opposing team will compete from two nearby practice rooms.
Team Liquid are set to play against KRU Esports in the opening match of Group B on Thursday. To account for offsite play, Team Liquid's matches will be moved to the end of their match day.
Since Nivera was added to the VALORANT roster, Team Liquid had not lost an official VALORANT match in the time leading into Champions. The team, which also includes Nivera's brother, Adil "ScreaM" Bernrlitom, added Nivera in September to replace James "Kryptix" Affleck, who left the team to deal with personal issues.
The 20-year-old Belgian player has helped Team Liquid win the VCT EMEA Last Chance Qualifier over Guild Esports in October and dominate Red Bull Home Ground No. 2 earlier this month over Acend.