As 1907 Fenerbahçe enters the knockout round of the play-in stage at this year’s League of Legends World Championship, mid laner Kim “Frozen” Tae-il saidthe team’s goals have changed.
In a video interview with Fomos, Frozen said that the team went into the tournament hoping to make it out of the play-in stage but now wants to aim just a little higher.
“We first came in with the goal of making it through the play-in, but now I think we can make it to quarters with some group luck, so we need to start practicing again,” he said.
Fenerbahçe drew into Group D of the play-in stage with Hong Kong Attitude from the LMS and Rampage from Japan. Over the course of two days, Fenerbahçe managed to beat all of the teams twice, exiting the knockout stage as the first seed of the group. The synergy between Frozen and his former teammate from his Longzhu Gaming days, Lee “Crash” Dong-woo, was on full display, despite only getting two days worth of practice together.
Frozen also pulled out a surprise Ekko pick on Day 4 of the play-in stage against Hong Kong Attitude. Although Ekko isn’t the most meta pick for the mid lane right now, Frozen was able to showcase a masterclass on the champion and played a large part in his team’s victory. The decision to pick Ekko came down as a combination of confidence and necessity.
“We weren’t sure of our draft picks because we didn’t get to practice much,” he said. “There are a lot of champions that can work in solo queue, but we pulled the trigger on Ekko without experimenting if he can work in a team-based competitive game. Since the opposing team favored Syndra, we banned away some of the support picks from there and decided to go for the champion I’m the most confident in, which can also go up against Syndra. We also wanted to give a change to our play away from reactionary plays.”
This is the first worlds berth in his career, and Frozen said he was amazed by the sheer magnitude of League of Legends’ largest annual stage and that it has been a blast so far.
“With a lot more people watching the games, it makes playing them more fun,” he said. “I keep wanting to show cool plays and good performances. I think it’s the best stage to play on.”