The first day of MSI’s Rumble Stage kicked off with a bang, as we finally got to see all the major regions face off.
G2 continue their undefeated streak
Heading into the tournament, the community and analysts felt T1 were the overwhelming favourites. They had a grudge match against G2 to kick off the Rumble Stage, featuring the historic KR vs EU rivalry and Faker vs Caps match up. The T1 bot lane were able to get ahead early, and propelled this small advantage into absolute lane control and a 5k gold lead:
Though G2 were in a precarious position, they had drafted an incredible team fighting combo with the Ornn, Diana, Kalista and Rakan all providing caPs’ Yasuo AoE knock-ups for his ultimate. After some expertly played team-fights, they were able to come back from a huge early-game disadvantage and close out the game:
G2 went on to dispatch the other major contender in the competition -- the LPL’s RNG -- to go 2-0 on the day. They are now the only team who have yet to drop a game this tournament. What's more impressive is how they are currently on a 22 winning streak and last lost a game when they faced Fnatic in the first round of the LEC playoffs. Since then, they have looked unstoppable; if T1 and RNG can’t take them down, who can?
With G2, RNG and T1 expected to sail through to the Knockout Stage, the battle for the fourth and final spot is hotly contested. EG, PSG and the Saigon Buffalos are all in with a shot, but EG and PSG took critical step forwards by winning their games against the Buffalos today:
Team fighting compositions thrive
Several teams found success with team-fighting compositions in today’s games. The potent Diana/Yasuo combo was run by several teams throughout the day, alongside picks like Rakan and Wukong jungle. This may partly be due to having to teams having to play on 35 ping, so are picking champion combos that are easier to pull off on higher ping.
After her mini-rework in patch 12.3, Ahri was an extremely popular during each region’s domestic playoffs. She has still had a high presence in MSI, but Zoe has emerged as a great answer to the pick. Both caPs and Faker played today, and used her to devastate their opponents:
Play of the day
Despite losing against G2, T1’s Oner made a phenomenal play on Viego to propel their early game advantage:
The play started off with G2 attempting to pick Faker off in a 2v1, but he was able to buy enough time for his teammates to join him. Not only did Oner demonstrate excellent Viego mechanics -- including perfect usage of his ultimate to dodge the Ornn knock-up -- but also utilised multiple champions’ kits to make the outplay.
Day 2 features a clash between the LCK and LPL, and a crucial match up in the battle for fourth place as EG take on PSG; stay tuned for more MSI coverage!