© Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games
G2 Esports and T1 go undefeated in MSI 2022 Groups
The first stage of the League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational has concluded, and both G2 Esports and T1 have gone undefeated. Let's look at their progress so far.
The League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational, this year held in the beautiful city of Busan, South Korea, concluded its first stage last weekend. The Group Stage of the international competition saw the 11 qualifying teams from leagues all over the globe sorted into three groups who battled it out for a place in the upcoming Rumble Stage. Six teams emerged victorious from this stage – two from each group – and much to the delight of EU fans, G2 Esports came out on top with a string of eight wins.
South Korea's own T1 also impressed, continuing their undefeated record from the League of Legends Champions Korea for a 6-0 win streak in Groups. Vietnamese team Saigon Buffalo also made it out of Group A, dropping just one series to the South Korean team. Elsewhere, Group B saw Chinese champions Royal Never Give Up finish on top, followed by PSG Talon. Finally, North American representatives Evil Geniuses also rose out of Group C, under G2.
G2 get a flawless victory
The 'kings of Europe' regained their crown in the League of Legends European Championship's 2022 Spring Season, achieving an incredible win streak in the season's playoffs. It appears that Rasmus 'caPs' Winther and his teammates carried that momentum into MSI, as they got the competition off to an impressive start, handily defeating both Australian squad ORDER and US team Evil Geniuses. Due to Group C being the smallest, made up of only three teams instead of four, the teams played against each other four times, while other groups played against each other three times, hence G2's higher win record.
G2 took apart ORDER with relative ease despite the extended number of matches, even switching up their picks in the final match, with Victor 'Flakked' Tortosa and Marcin 'Jankos' Jankowski choosing Sion and Sejuani, respectively. Even with some weird and wonderful picks made from the comfortable position of a 7-0 win/loss record in this final match, G2 still came out on top, and ORDER, unfortunately, went home without a single win at MSI.
It was a similar story for Evil Geniuses. In the first game, G2 crushed their US rivals with the botlane duo of Flakked and Raphaël 'Targamas' Crabbé, giving no quarter with their relentless attacks. The next games followed suit, with G2 becoming more confident, taking objectives with relatively weak resistance from their opponents, allowing them to dominate the Summoner's Rift. Their success in this stage of the competition has allowed them to continue a now 20-game win streak, but how long can it continue?
T1 remain undefeated
It's an undeniable fact that T1 are one of the finest League of Legends teams in the world, and after a flawless run in MSI's Group Stage, that reputation remains very much intact. Although concerns about ping had been raised among fans and commentators, the team showed no signs of this being a hindrance when the games began.
T1's main opponents in their group were Japan's DetonatioN FocusMe, predicted to be one of the tougher teams they would face in Groups. Their matches were closely fought, but midlane clashes were consistently ruled by Lee 'Faker' Sang-hyeok and a superior draft from T1, leaving the Japanese team unable to pick up a single victory against the mighty T1.
Next on the chopping block was the Latin American squad, Team Aze. T1 wasn't taking any chances in their games, steamrolling to an early gold lead and calmly commanding team fights across the rift. Perhaps surprisingly, the toughest competition in Group A turned out to be Vietnam's Saigon Buffalo. The team put up an admirable fight, but T1 managed to stay ahead in terms of gold throughout their games, steadily picking up objectives while their opponents struggled to match their fighting prowess. The victory in Group A secured T1 a 6-0 result, extending their win streak from the previous season to a historic 26-0.
Needless to say, the team look absolutely unstoppable at this stage, but in the Rumble, there are several teams able – and very willing – to put an end to their streak. Reigning MSI champions Royal Never Give Up have also had a flawless season and will be looking to continue their reign, while Saigon Buffalos could continue their impressive run. Both PSG Talon and Evil Geniuses still have a chance to shine.
But the ultimate clash will be T1 facing off against G2. The teams have been dominant in their home leagues, and their undefeated runs so far show how determined they both are to win and how skilled they are even against international opponents. However it pans out, the next few rounds of MSI 2022 will be a fascinating watch for fans all over the globe.