Gen.G have awakened in the third day of the 2018 League of Legends World Championship and have kept their playoff hopes alive, forcing a three-way tie for second place in Group B. In the meantime, Invictus Gaming took the lead in Group D.
The day started with MAD Team’s scaling composition (Aatrox, Olaf, Lissandra, Kai’Sa and Rakan) taking on KT Rolster’s team mid-game team fighting composition (Irelia, Taliyah, Swain, Varus and Leona). KT put their opponents on the back foot as they controlled neutral objectives, secured a lead on Smeb’s Irelia, then reversed a pick attempt at the 12:15 mark near the mid lane for a 4:1 trade. The Korean team proceeded to massacre their opponents upon securing a 10k gold lead by minute 20, and showcased excellent vision control throughout the game. As a bonus fact, UcaL’s Swain had a fully stacked Mejai’s Soulstealer — an item usually reserved for solo queue snowballing, as kills (and not dying) amplify the item’s power.
Team Liquid were not as lucky, as EDward Gaming were essentially handed a victory on a silver platter. Despite Team Liquid initially taking the lead on a scaling composition, their insistence to fight around Dragon spawns and other neutrals doomed them as EDG were far less reliant on items to win such confrontations. Scout particularly shined on Azir (4/0/11 KDA) with two highlight plays in a row, and he was well aided by Meiko’s Alistar (3/2/13, 100 percent kill participation).
Neither were Fnatic, as they faced what is arguably the best early-game team of the tournament in Invictus Gaming. Invictus’ jungler, Ning, secured early advantages on Broxah and pathed his way into becoming Fnatic’s nightmare, securing a lead in the bot lane for JackeyLove’s Kai’Sa. Fnatic’s greedy play also caused their downfall, as evidenced by Hylissang’s performance throughout the early-game, Caps greeding for a kill that never came and dying instead (12:20), and — more markedly — a forced Baron Nashor attempt at 23:45 after setting up a 3:0 confrontation in their favor to oppose iG’s vision control attempt. sOAZ was the sole consistently bright spot for Fnatic and nearly helped them back into contention, but the Baron Nashor call led to their doom, as JackeyLove secured a quadrakill, and as iG claimed the buff for themselves then destroyed structures leading to a Nexus collapse.
100 Thieves were able to count their blessings on the other hand as they won North America’s second game of the tournament, despite G-Rex’s best attempt at claiming a victory for the LMS. The two teams went blow for blow in terms of turret takedowns and skirmishes (18:10 for 100 Thieves, 23:10 in favor of G-Rex), but the American squad ultimately secured the game with a lengthy skirmish that made full use of Ssumday’s ability to play Urgot (26:30), with a Baron takedown following shortly after. G-Rex fought valiantly for 10 minutes, but Ssumday single-handedly secured the game for 100 Thieves with a decisive flash-fear combo at the 37:10 mark — allowing his teammates to roll over their opponents uncontested.
In the final game of the day that involved a Western team, Team Vitality showed resourcefulness against Royal Never Give Up despite Karsa’s early gank setting up a potentially disastrous bot lane adventure for Attila and Jactroll. However, Vitality’s duo bot lane remained roughly even in farm, and often traded confrontations with Royal. Ultimately, RNG’s ability to neutralize Kikis (2/6/2) helped them control vision in Vitality’s jungle, leading into a game-deciding flank at the 22:15 mark, with LetMe’s Urgot teleport into the backline snowballing into a 4-for-2 and Baron Nashor takedown. The base folded after six more minutes of action, and as LetMe (4/3/9) became unstoppable, much to Kikis’s dismay.
In the final game of the day, Gen.G revived hope of a South Korean reemergence after prevailing against Cloud9. The game did not start on their terms as Crown’s Aatrox heavily overextended against Jensen’s Galio, leading Blaber to punish the deed with a gank. However, future engage attempts from Blaber doomed Cloud9, particularly at the 20:30 mark, when he engaged CuVee’s poppy in the mid lane without knowing of his opponents’ whereabouts (and with three of them being nearby). The situation spiraled into a 2-for-0 team fight and a Baron Nashor takedown. Gen.G closed the game after 24 minutes of action and, for the first time, were a cause for relief for the South Korean fans.
Group A’s Afreeca Freecs and Team Liquid are the sole winless squads seeded 2nd or higher, and they have the opportunity to steer themselves back into a comfortable position. Afreeca take on Phong Vũ Buffalo in the first game of the 2018 World Championship’s fourth day of action — starting on Oct. 13 at 10:00 CET / 1 a.m. PT / 17:00 KST. You can watch the action live on the Worlds hub!