Two years into the pandemic, COVID-19 is still disrupting Dota 2's professional circuit, as the 2021-2022 Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) Spring Tour regional league in China has been postponed twice over the past two weeks.
The latest delay comes as Shanghai, where the league is being hosted live, has gone into an extended lockdown due to rising COVID-19 cases in the country.
Perfect World Esports, the organiser for the DPC's Chinese regional league, announced the competition's latest postponement on Friday (8 April) after discussions with Dota 2 developer Valve Software.
The Chinese regional league was initially postponed on 29 March as Shanghai went into lockdown, and was planned to resume on 8 April.
However, with lockdowns in Shanghai set to continue, DPC competition in China is now tentatively set to resume on 12 April.
The top tier of Dota 2 was not the only game affected, with China's League of Legends' Pro League also delayed a second time this week.
Competition in Division I and Division II of the Chinese regional league was in its third week when the postponements started.
The International 10 (TI10) finalists PSG.LGD as well as Royal Never Give Up and Xtreme Gaming were in a three-way tie for first place in Division I with 3-0 records apiece when the league shut down.
Meanwhile, Dandelion Esports Club sat atop the standings of Division II with a 3-0 record.
It is unclear whether the Chinese regional league's continued postponement as well as the COVID-19 situation in the country will affect the attendance of Chinese teams in the upcoming Spring Major.
The Spring Major is set to be held in Stockholm, Sweden from 12 to 22 May with a live audience in attendance.
The Chinese regional league is not the only regional league in the DPC that is currently in hiatus. The Eastern European regional league has been indefinitely postponed since late February due to the ongoing crisis in the region caused by Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
"As the terrible suffering caused by the war in Ukraine unfolds, we do not see a way that the Eastern European DPC league can happen as envisioned for the foreseeable future, and it was with much regret that we recently had to postpone the Spring Tour in one of the community's most vibrant and storied regions," said Valve.
It is also unclear if Eastern European teams will be able to attend the upcoming Spring Major.