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LoL World Championships Semi-Final Review

31 October 2017 10:47

With the tournament favourites Longzhu Gaming already eliminated after being beaten in the quarter-finals, it was down to the four semi-finalists to take the mantle of the new favourite. Two Chinese teams, Royal Never Give Up and Team WE, would face off against two Korean outfits, SK Telecom T1 and Samsung Galaxy. The Korean sides were easily the favourites after both featured in last year’s final, with SK Telecom T1 taking the overall honours.

The rounds took place on the 28th and 29th October at the Shanghai Oriental Sports Centre. The centre’s indoor stadium was full of 18,000 live fans all watching world class League of Legends.

Royal Never Give Up vs SK Telecom T1

Royal Never Give Up came into the semi-final after topping their group earlier in the tournament and beating Fnatic 3-1 in the quarter-final. SK Telecom T1 also topped their group, but were pushed all the way to a decisive final game by Misfits in the last-eight.

The first game went to Royal Never Give Up in a regulatory 38-minute battle that they controlled from start to finish, amassing 18 kills to SK Telecom T1’s 7. The opposite then occurred in game two, with SK Telecom T1 taking the comfortable victory in just over half an hour. With neither team having stamped their dominance on the round, game three would be crucial in deciding who had the upper hand. In an insanely one-sided affair, Royal Never Give Up took the win in just 23 minutes with RNG Uzi dishing out six kills and three assists in such a small amount of time.

With a grasp firmly on the semi-finals and only needing one win to get there, Royal Never Give Up started game four in strong fashion to have a slender lead after 20 minutes of action, but then the first big team fight took place. SK Telecom T1 came out on top, scoring four kills and then taking down a dragon and baron to take a 4k gold lead. This lead saw them survive a team battle later in the match where they lost four champions to finally prevail in a cagey, yet exciting, 32-minute affair.

Once again for SK Telecom T1, it came down to a winner-takes-all game five, and boy did they show their class once again. Much like their game five victory over Misfits, SKT just controlled the match from start to finish, never relinquishing the gold lead and scoring ten kills to Royal Never Give Up’s one, whilst also slaying four dragons in the process. It was SKT Peanut that should take the honours as round MVP after slaying a rift herald, a baron and two dragons, along with six champion kills in the decisive fifth game. SK Telecom T1 march onto another final, whilst Royal Never Give Up head home after an outstanding tournament for the Chinese team.

Team WE vs Samsung Galaxy

Team WE came into the round after sailing through the play-in stages and group stages, but were pushed to a game five by Cloud9 in the quarter-finals. Samsung Galaxy were the opposite after a cagey group stage, but absolutely annihilated Longzhu Gaming - the tournament favourites – 3-0 in the quarter-finals.
Team WE were the quickest out the gates, taking game one in an easy 27 minutes, out-scoring Samsung Galaxy 14-1 in champion kills whilst getting first blood in just one minute and 36 seconds. Game two mirrored what we saw in the first semi-final, with Samsung Galaxy switching their fortunes to take the win in 28 minutes on the back of an 11-7 kill advantage.

Game three started off cagey, with neither team making a big move until the 20-minute mark, when SSG Ruler took down WE xiye for first blood. Subsequently, Samsung Galaxy then managed to take down a dragon and baron in quick succession, along with a 4-1 team fight kill advantage, to see their gold level rise beyond a point that Team WE could compete with to take the win in 36 minutes.

In the fourth match, Team WE started strongly, mustering a near 2k gold advantage at the 10-minute mark off the back of six kills and slaying the first baron. Sadly for the home fans of the Chinese team, this is where their luck stopped, as Samsung Galaxy reeled off a series of baron, dragon and rift herald kills from here on out to take the win in just over half an hour. SSG Ruler was easily the MVP of this round, especially in the final match where he scored a three champion multi-kill.

The final for the 2017 LoL World Championships will be a repeat of the 2016 tournament, when SK Telecom T1 take on Samsung Galaxy on Saturday 4th November in the best-of-five match. The matches will be held at the Beijing National Stadium, site of the 2008 Olympics, with a staggering capacity for 91,000 eSports and LoL fans. Will SK Telecom T1 be able to repeat their success again, or can Samsung Galaxy take back the World Championship?

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Updated on: 2017-10-31

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