The highlight of most children's eighth birthday is blowing out the candles on their cake.

However, for Joseph Deen, it was blowing the ink dry on his freshly-signed contract to be a professional gamer.

Joseph is the youngest-ever paid Fortnite player, after signing with Team 33 in December last year.

The Californian esports team invited him to their headquarters to give him a $33,000 (£23,600) signing-on bonus, and high-speed computer system.

"I felt amazing when I got offered the contract," Joseph told the BBC. "I've thought about being a professional gamer a lot, but no-one took me seriously until Team 33 came along."

"One of my scouts got in touch and said 'I've got to know this kid called Joseph and he is insanely good'," explained Tyler Gallagher, Team 33's chief executive and co-founder.

"So they started playing one v one matches as much as they could every day. After a while my scout said 'you've got to sign this kid. If we don't, someone else will!'."

March 02, 2021
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