Day 4 was the perfect culmination of World Championship 2017 Play-in group stage. Young Generation had stellar performances against Kaos Latin Gamers and Fnatic, while 1907 Fenerbahçe and Hong Kong Attitude had to play a tiebreaker game to determine the #1 and #2 seed. Here’s a brief recap of the action in case you missed it.
Hong Kong Attitude vs. Rampage
A reprisal of yesterday’s match, HKA vs. RPG was another evidence of RPG’s gaps and loopholes. They improved very little since MSI, if at all. With this level of play, it’s going to take a while for them and the whole Japan LoL scene to catch up with the rest of the world.
Kaos Latin Gamers vs. Young Generation
It seems that young Vietnamese tigers overcame their nerves from yesterday, as they successfully outplayed Kaos Latin Gamers this time around. The first half of the match was rather slow, but Young Generation picked up in the last 15 minutes with a series of objectives and turret kills.
The pre-baron teamfight went in YG’s favour, with KLG barely escaping getting aced. Naturally, YG immediately followed with a baron kill, resulting in an overwhelming tempo swing. Better teams would struggle to come back from this devastating blow.
KLG were forced to desperately defend their base. YG came in with full force, acing the South American team for the win.
Step 1: complete.
1907 Fenerbahçe vs. Rampage
With nothing to lose, Rampage decided to go with style in their last game. For the better part of the game, they were actually in the lead gold-wise, but Fenerbahçe had visibly more success taking down turrets and objectives.
Nevertheless, Fenerbahçe had to really put out an effort for this win. In the end, Fenerbahçe are simply too good to lose this. RPG, however, displayed a faint glimpse of promise, despite the loss.
Hopefully, they will come in stronger next year.
Kaos Latin Gamers vs. Fnatic
Due to KLG’s loss to YG, this was the last game Fnatic had to win in order to have a guaranteed #1 seed. It took them less than 27 minutes to do so.
The game was rather uneventful, with only 10 kills total (2-8). Most of those happened shortly before the finish, when Fnatic furiously bursted KLG off of Baron kill. Onto the knockout phase now.
1907 Fenerbahçe vs. Hong Kong Attitude
The impressions from their first matchup yesterday were spot on. This time around, it was HKA’s turn to win the proverbial 50-50.
The game lasted over 46 minutes. HKA flourished on their abundant objective plays, but kills were sparse on both sides, so neither team had a significant gold advantage.
However, the fateful Baron kill and an ensuing teamfight both went in HKA’s favour. From that point onward it was a steep downhill for Fenerbahçe. A win for HKA also signified a tie at the top.
The tiebreaker game was to be resolved after Fnatic vs. Young Generation
Fnatic vs. Young Generation
After the exciting resolution of the previous game, Young Generation made sure to keep the excitement high.
Win or lose, Fnatic would remain #1 seed. On the other hand, Young Generation had one more chance to pass the group stage as #2 seed. And they made the most out of it.
They gained an upper hand early, but instead of laying back and maintaining the lead, they opted to heavily push for towers and objectives. This is a risky strategy, but if done right, it’s something that Fnatic often struggles with. Their go-to clumped up teamfighting capabilities can’t be utilized to full extent.
YG capitalized on this now widely known issue with Fnatic’s macro plays. In the nerve-wracking fashion, they threw themselves at Fnatic’s Nexus in the end, while all 5 Fnatic player were focusing on baron.
As it turns out, this was a perfect shot call. Fnatic desperately rushed back in the last-ditch attempt to save the base, but it was two late as 3 YG players circled around the Nexus, lowering it down to zero. GG boys, see you in knockout phase!
Hong Kong Attitude vs. 1907 Fenerbahçe
The tiebreaker resolution of group D was surely the fairest way to determine the seeds. Again, the game was very close overall.
HKA controlled the better part of the game, with more kills, objectives and gold. However Fenerbahçe displayed that prime quality once again in the end, nearly acing HKA in the pre-baron teamfight. Of course, they quickly took the baron and completely reversed the tempo. This was enough to swing the game into an eventual win.
The three games between these two showed that they are almost equally as strong. Now we’ll have to see how they’ll fare in the knockouts.
The two Bo5 knockout round pairs have been drawn soon after the final game.
Cloud9 and Fnatic will face Lyon Gaming and Hong Kong Attitude on September 28. The two LCS teams are slightly favoured, but it’s far from a done deal.
The day after, Fenerbahçe and Team WE will square with Team oNe Esports and Young Generation. WE and Fenerbahçe are favourites, but the underdogs have shown long teeth in the play-in groups, so it’s going to get bloody.
At least one wildcard team will advance into the Group Stage. However, it wouldn’t be too surprising to see some of the top-league teams get eliminated early. Stay tuned for more.