The inaugural Women in Games UK Esports Awards have wrapped, with male journalist and commentator James Banks scooping the gong for best presenter. 

The fact Banks walked away with an award isn't without its controversy, obviously. As reported by the BBC, fellow esports presenter Elle Osilli-Wood labelled the result 'a slap in the face,' and while acknowledging that Banks gave 'great advice' after sharing a panel with him, noted there's 'so few women recognised in gaming, let alone esports.'

'I was one of only two female presenters invited by WIGJ to speak at the esports event, and I can think of so many other women who should have been sat beside me,' she explained.

Furthermore, concerns about Banks' eligibility were raised to Newsbeat at the event, specifically relating to a number of offensive Tweets posted by him dating back to 2012.

'Quality of women just went down by 100% now we are back in the uk,' one Tweet read. 

Another message posted last year called for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive to be made 'great again,' asking gamers to 'stop arguing/pratting about with mix [sic] teams and acting like girls.'

When contacted by Newsbeat regarding the Tweets, Banks issued the following apology:

'The language I used was childish, and never intended to be anti-feminist, though I can understand the impression that they have created. I sincerely apologise for any offence I may have caused.'

In addition, an anonymous member of the WIGJ told Newsbeat that they did not agree with Banks receiving the award, and said 'there was no discussion' about the topic and described it as 'a serious misstep that undermines all the great work everyone does for WIGJ.'

Organised by WIGJ, a non-profit network that aims to champion female talent within the games industry, the awards also saw Lisa Brightma, Cordelia Chui, and Riot Gaming UK emerge victorious in the Stream, Player, and Team awards categories, respectively.

According to a recent WIGJ report, the entire esports workforce is only made up of 5% women, which equates to around 1 in 20. 

Carry on the conversation on the VideoGamer forums!