BLAST Premier Fall Final to take place as an arena event in Copenhagen
A 12,000 capacity venue in Denmark will host the tournament on November 23-28, with the last three days being open to the public.
The BLAST Premier Fall Final will see Counter-Strike once again being played on stage and in front of fans as the event is set to take place in Copenhagen's Royal Arena in November, the organizer announced on Monday.
The tournament will be BLAST's first one in an arena setting in nearly 20 months and their inaugural arena event since moving away from the Pro Series format of competition to the Premier circuit at the start of 2020. The BLAST Premier Fall Final is scheduled after the PGL Stockholm Major, which is currently the first Counter-Strike arena event set to take place since the breakout of the coronavirus pandemic.
During a press conference relating to the announcement, BLAST's VP of Product & Executive Producer Nicolas Estrup said being the beating competition to be the first large-scale event isn't their priority.
"We have no desire in racing anyone anywhere when it is about a global pandemic," Estrup said, explaining that they are focusing on creating a different experience compared to previous BLAST arena events. "From the start, we felt like it wasn't needed for us to be the first. If anyone beats us to, great, if not, well then it is going to be exciting that we are the first ones. But safety first, health above everything," Estrup concluded.
BLAST noted that they are following government guidelines when planning the event, with Andrew Haworth, the Commissioner for BLAST Premier adding that they "have a number of contingencies in place to ensure the event is safe for the players through to the fans".
The tournament organizer is optimistic about the state the global health situation will be in November and is hoping that they will be allowed to utilize the full capacity of the 12,000 people venue. In the case of limitations due to health concerns, BLAST is looking at 5,000 people as a possible lower limit of attendance.
BLAST Premier Fall Final will take place over six days, with eight teams in competition for a $425,000 prize pool. Six teams will earn their place at the event through the Fall Groups (September 16-26), with two more earning their place through the Fall Showdown (October 12-17). The first three days of the event will be played behind closed doors, with fans allowed into the venue for the last three days.