Editor’s note: The story and headline have been updated to better reflect the context of the comments made during the interview.
Invictus Gaming mid laner Song “Rookie” Eui-jin said making it to this year’s League of Legends World Championship has become a life goal.
In a video interview with Fomos’ Kim “Kenzi” Yong-woo, Rookie talked about his personal goals for the season, and just how much making it to worlds means to him.
“I want to really make it to worlds and do well at it, but not everything goes the way people want it to,” he said. “I want to make it to worlds by playing my heart out and winning the LPL. It’s a life goal of mine now.”
Invictus Gaming is third in Group A of the League of Legends Pro League summer split with a match record of 6-5. Perhaps one of Korea’s most talented mid laners in 2014, Rookie is most well known for defeating SK Telecom T1 K twice while he was a member of the KT Rolster Arrows. His carrying performance continued after he moved to IG in December 2014 ahead of Season 5, and he was regarded as one of the best mid laners in the region.
But Rookie seems to think that title is not yet fitting for him. He said he will only be happy to own the title of “best mid laner in the LPL” after a successful run at worlds.
“I was happy to receive such praise when I was more confident in my skills, but lately I think I can’t bring my solo queue performance to the stage, so I think I’m going through a slump,” he said. “I want to own that title by playing well in the LPL, winning the split, and proving to fans both domestic and international by doing well at worlds.”
Rookie was KT’s rising star when he left. KT coach Lee Ji-hoon apparently said he wanted to build a team around Rookie and Lee “KaKAO” Byeong-kwon, but both players left for China. There were also murky surroundings around his departure and how the Chinese teams first contacted Rookie and KaKAO, and Rookie offered an apology to his former coach.
“When (KaKAO and I) left KT it wasn’t on the best of terms, so I want to apologize,” he said. “Despite our history, I am so thankful that you continue to contact us and look out for us. I bought a meal for KT when Fly was still a part of the roster, so I don’t think the head coach has that bad of an impression of me. I think I’m here thanks to the coaching staff of KT.”
On the topic of a potential return to the LCK, Rookie smiled and that Korea is his home country, and an eventual return can’t be ruled out.
“Korea is my home country and the LCK is my league, so one can never know if I will ever return to it or not,” he said. “I hope the fans wait for that day should it ever come, and if I do I hope they support me so I can perform well.”
Cover photo courtesy of Riot Games