On the 9th of August (KST), kt Rolster (KT) defeated MVP 2:0 and directly advanced to the finals. KT showed-off some of their aggressive, fast-tempo macro game against MVP. They managed to overcome their weakness, which was underperforming in mid-game. Especially, KT showed some concrete teamfight abilities and won the series.
After the match, KT head coach Oh "ZanDarc" Chang-jong was interviewed.
This is the team’s first ‘direct finals’ since 2013. How does it feel?
We underperformed at the beginning of round 1. Still, I thought that the team will improve and give out good results since we performed well in Rift Rivals. Although we did lose right away after the Rift Rivals against Hanwha Life Esports, I’m happy that we still managed to directly head to the finals. We were able to advance to the finals because the current members joined the team. I'm thankful.
The team was shaky at the beginning of the split. What comes on your mind first?
People say that we have a habit of suddenly losing games that we’ve almost won. That was the focus for us and tried to fix it. I believed that we made mistakes even though we were winning because of our mentality. I talked individually with the players and tried to make them improve. After that, the players seemed to be really desperate and keen to win in every match.
Which match do you think was the most memorable?
It’s really difficult to just pick one match. Well, the most memorable match was against Afreeca Freecs where Ucal was so good on his Yasuo. Usually, we lost a lot of games that we thought we’d win. However, after that match, even though we were losing, we turned it around and won.
Although the team has advanced to the finals, they are not yet qualified for the Worlds. Who would you like to face in the LCK finals?
Our performance is more important than which opponent we'll face. If the players manage to perform well, we can get good results. We do have to concern on the playoffs results, but we’ll be focusing on how we can make our game more favorable for us to win.
How was the players’ performance? Do you have anything to say to them?
Ucal who played aggressively throughout the split was really interesting. Also, the in-depth experience of Score, who was supporting the team throughout the split was interesting. Smeb did have some difficulties, but he always tried to improve which eventually helped him at the end of the split. Deft was also having a hard time because of the ‘non-ADC’ meta. I want to thank him since he followed the team’s orders well. Mata always puts in a lot of effort. He delivered some helpful words for the team and helped the team improve.
The rookie team, Griffin was fierce throughout the split. How was KT so good against Griffin?
We studied their playstyle and pick&bans. We chose compositions that can be an advantage against them. It’s not that we’re just naturally strong against them. I think the opponent rather played hastily in round 2 because of their defeat against us in round 1.
On the other hand, KT is weak against Kingzone.
We did show some clear weaknesses against Kingzone. Usually, the team shakes when we can’t gain the laning advantage. Now, I’m going to make improvements and make the team know how to win without it.
Any last remarks?
I’m really happy that we made it to the finals. Overall, this split was mentally tough to go through since we had to win the last match in order to secure 1st place. I’d like to thank the players who've put in their utmost to directly get to the finals. Also, I want to thank our front for their support.