On day 2 of the 2022 Mid-Season Invitational, T1 defeated Team AZE and picked up their second victory of the tournament. It only took them just over 20 minutes to score their victory, showcasing their dominance as a team and as favorites to take it all in Busa.
After the win, T1 head coach Choi “Polt” Seong-hun joined Inven Global for a one-on-one interview.
Congratulations on your victory. How do you feel?
It feels really great that we started this tournament 2-0.
During the LCK Spring Finals, the players weren’t feeling well, with most of the team catching COVID. Are they feeling better now?
We went straight into quarantine and it’s been some time since then, so right now, the team has pretty much beaten COVID. There are still after-effects of Omicron, such as slight coughs, but players are feeling much better at the moment.
As far as I know, Oner had back problems. How is he doing?
Even if he goes to the hospital, it’s hard to pinpoint what is the actual cause of his back problem. His back problem might even be beatable through exercise, but if it gets really bad, we’re going to look for an alternative solution.
T1's players had a pretty hectic schedule with the whole Asian Games tryouts as well. How has the management helped them?
The Asian Games schedule was tough due to everything being so last minute. Even if we tried to make the best schedule for the players, the schedule was definitely overbearing. Even if every player beat COVID, they each have their own pace of recovering, and I think we should’ve been even more thoughtful in that regard. Thankfully, the Asian Games schedule wasn’t that long, so we gave them plenty of time to rest and helped them recover to their prime condition.
To talk about MSI, T1 obviously keep an eye on all the teams that play in the tournament. Was there a team that surpassed your expectations?
I think Saigon Buffalo are good. They’ve shown a lot of fight in our match against them as well. I’d say Saigon Buffalo from our group; we’ll need to play the other teams to figure it out.
Any specific players that caught your eye?
I’d say their bot lane was very aggressive.
After T1’s first match, Gumayusi said he was innocent. Can you tell us more why he said that?
[Laughter] There were a lot of reasons. It might seem that the world was against him in that game because he died a lot, but I told him it was okay because I knew he was going to play well and redeem himself.
While Riot said that the ping’s artificially set to 35, players have said that the ping feels higher. What are the players’ opinions on the higher ping? How have the players adjusted to it?
I think this is a very hard question. It’s something that’s reliant on how they feel inside the game. I’m trusting the number that I see on the screen. One day, the players will go, “The reaction time feels faster today”, and “The reaction time feels slower” the next day. Based on my experience as a player who has played on higher ping before, it was different each day. I think it definitely plays a part.
While the ping may feel much higher than how what is displayed on screen, we ask the referees to fix it if it gets really bad.
Faker stated in another interview that the ping affected the champion tier list in the meta. Can you tell us more about it?
Simply put, it’s harder to dodge by reaction based on the enemy movement with higher ping. I think it’s harder to play champions that need to dodge enemy skills via reaction.
Keria showcased Wukong tonight, and Oner even played Vi jungle on day 1. How much has the meta changed since the Spring split?
The meta’s changed a lot. It hasn’t completely changed since the Spring Finals, but I’d say a good chunk of it has changed.
What’s the team’s mindset for MSI this year?
I’m glad that we’re off to a great 2-0 start. I know that the players will play better as they get adjusted to the stage more and more. A lot of fans have come to cheer us on; both the players and I are really grateful for their support. We’ll make sure to showcase greater gameplay in this tournament.
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