Shots are fired, and the League of Legends World Championship officially began today on October 5th, 2021. The World Championship's first day was full of surprises. Fans from all over the world had the opportunity to enjoy niche picks and engaging gameplay from the teams that competed today.
Today might have been the most fun first day for fans to ever witness from a League Championship. Day 1's teams played with style and exuded a sense of total confidence. Patch 11.18 brought out a few exciting changes for pro play, hinting at a fresh meta for World Championship. Riot Games promised a championship that is not boring to watch, and they did deliver on their promise, but not even they were prepared for the teams that started the tournament.
Zed jungle, Talon jungle, and even Amumu support, the first day of World Championship witnessed a plethora of cheese picks. If you missed the first day, you could re-watch the entire stream at (Twitch)
Game 1: HLE vs. LNG (0-1)
Riot Games wants to bring your solo queue champions into the forefront and have them be viable picks in the pro scene. Game 1 is a full display of that statement.
Game 1 starts big with an Irelia pick from the top laner of Hanwha Life Esports, Morgan. His MVP teammate, Chovy, followed up with a Tryndamere pick for the mid-lane. LNG esports quickly returned heat by getting Miss Fortune and Qiyana for themselves. It seems like two formerly popular champs for the pro scene are now making a comeback due to them receiving earlier tweaks. Both champions will be highly contested picks for this World Championship.
The Irelia and Tryndamere picks seemed perfect against MF and Qiyana because of their mobility until LNG esports locked in Jax for Ale. Then, LNG's top laner proceeded to run over both Tryndamere and Irelia with his counter-strike to secure the first win against HLE. It is safe to say that Ale was the MVP of the first match.
Game 2: INF vs. REDC (0-1)
Both bot lane duos from the two teams played this game exceptionally well, but Miss Fortune's ultimate buffs and Leona's engagement appeared more dominant. As a result, REDC represented Brazil with a win.
Game 3: LNG vs. PCE (1-0)
With one early game in their hand, LNG Esports, the fourth seed of China's LPL, advanced to the successive convincing win against PEACE of Oceania.
PEACE continued the exciting theme of day one by drafting Zed jungle and Amumu support. The draft was nothing more than a friendly debut at Worlds, but LNG did not go easy on them.
This match featured a return of Vizicsacsi as PEACE's top laner. The 28-year-old veteran hadn't participated in a professional game since reaching the semifinals of Worlds 2019 with Splyce before losing to SK Telecom T1.
Unfortunately for Vizicsacsi, LNG kept a close eye on the former LEC MVP as he made his professional comeback. LNG wanted to make a statement out of Vizicsacsi. As a result, he faced a 3,000 gold in-lane disadvantage with a 0/2/0 score fifteen minutes into the game. Vizicsacsi finished the game with a mediocre 2/3/1 score because he was focused and unable to contribute to his team.
On the other hand, LNG's top laner Ale continued his high performance with a Fiora pick, bringing his overall KDA ratio to 23.0 - a great start in Worlds.
Game 4: HLE vs. INF (1-0)
Once again, unique champions are being tested on day 1 of Worlds. In this match, Infinity of Latin America drafted Graves top and Zoe mid. Zoe has not been a consistent pick for pro play since the start of season 11 due to other high-priority champions, so we are glad to see her play-making kit return to the pro scene.
Miss Fortune remained a highly contested pick for day 1. Teams like to pair her with Leona. Knowing this, Hanwha Life Esports took Leona away from Infinity, leaving them with Amumu support. Aside from excellent offensive tools, the sad mummy lacks peels to protect his ADC, which Infinity suffered. On the other hand, Graves top was proven to be on par with Renekton throughout the match, but Buggax was unable to generate any lead for his team. HLE's Chovy closed the match with a final push, while his teammates fended off INF during the last teamfight of the match.
Game 5: UOL vs. DFM (0-1)
This match was a blast to watch. Detonation FocusMe debuted at Worlds with a Talon jungle pick, played by Steel. The cheese pick proved to be working for DFM since Steal was ahead after a first blood and a series of successful ganks. Steal ended the match with an impressive 6/1/5 score for such a cheese pick, but he was not the only one popping off. His teammates Yutapon and Aria also performed exceptionally well, with scores of 7/1/6 and 4/0/7, respectively.
Game 6: GS vs. BYG (1-0)
Seeing how spicy the other matches have been, fans were surprised to see nothing out of the ordinary with this match besides the Jarvan top played by PK from Beyond Gaming. However, the match was exciting to watch nonetheless. Constant fighting between Galatasary Esport and Beyond Gaming gave viewers minimal downtime. In the end, Beyond Gaming came out on top, securing their first victory.
Game 7: DFM vs. C9 (0-1)
NA finally got a chance to flex their guns in the tournament! C9's first game at Worlds was a success against Detonation FocusMe. Despite their convincing victory against Unicorn of Love, DFM failed to stand up against one of the NA's giants. C9 established their usual dominant playstyle from the start with a first blood and a first dragon, swinging the momentum to their favor. C9's mid laner Perkz ended the match with a perfect KDA of 8/0/2.
Game 8: UOL vs. GS (0-1)
Galatasaray Esports secured their first win at Worlds after dominating Unicorn of Love in the early game. GS got a non-contested first dragon and a rift herald by grouping up very early in the match. They refused to back down and played even more aggressively after securing the rift herald and influencing the rest of the match with their dominant, grouped-up playstyle. GS's gameplay was new and refreshing to watch.
Worlds 2021 continues with more play-in action tomorrow at 6 AM by CT time zone. Tune in every day for news and results!
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