On the 16th (KST), EDG ended their last round of the groups stage with a 4-2 score and qualified for the quarterfinals as the second seed.
The day had started well for EDG. Defeating kt, EDG was at arms reach at placing 1st in groups. However, Team Liquid surprised the world by defeating EDG and made their last act at Worlds to solidify kt as 1st place. Despite all this, EDG has still qualified for the quarterfinals.
After the games, we got to meet with EDG’s head coach, NoFe. Below are the interview responses.
¤ How do you feel about qualifying for the quarterfinals?
Our primary goal was to qualify for the quarterfinals. Although it does feel amazing that we did qualify, it is a bit unfortunate that we came to close to placing 1st but failed to do so.
¤ Coming into Worlds as the 3rd seed, what were your initial expectations for Worlds? Were you confident that EDG would make it out of groups?
To be honest, EDG didn’t perform that well during the Summer Split. There was a lot of speculation from both our fans and our team that Worlds might be quite difficult this year. I was confident that we could make it out of groups, but it was not with full certainty. Since we were able to qualify for the quarterfinals, results wise, I think everything still went well for us.
¤ EDG lost to kt once but won against them today. What changed?
We actually were unable to scrim against kt before our first match against them. We had no idea how good kt could be. When we did meet them in the first round, I think we were a bit worried and anxious. I had thoughts of ‘Can we go up against kt? If so, to what extent?’ However, after we played against them, we all thought ‘Oh, this is actually doable.’ The players started discussing on how they can beat kt.
We came into today’s game against kt with the mindset that we can win. It was nice to see that our expectations came into fruition.
¤ Beating the number 1 seed team from Korea must boost EDG's confidence. What are your predictions for the quarterfinals?
Although we played decent uptil now, EDG still seems a bit shaky. The team kind of feels like a curse where we are unable to harvest our full potential (laughs). As long as luck and player’s conditions are on our side, I don’t think making it to the semifinals would be a dream.
In every World Championships that EDG has participated in, EDG has never been able to get passed the quarterfinals. No matter what teams we met. To go even higher than we have ever gone before, I really want to make it to the semifinals.
¤ RNG is seen as the most famous and strongest team from China. However, RNG seemed very shakey against C9. Why do you think RNG had such a hard time and are you confident beating teams like C9?
We already know and acknowledge that RNG is a very strong and formidable team. Because RNG has won and came here so easily, I believe RNG got a little bit too confident and cocky against C9. Although C9’s players displayed amazing performances and drafted incredibly well, I felt that I was not able to see RNG’s best performance.
I believe C9 actually had such a huge impact into the Worlds scene. After C9’s games, their own unique color or style of play came into the spotlight. I feel like teams are only now trying to do what C9 has done and figure out what their team’s unique playstyle is. I definitely felt that Coach Reapered is really something else. What I also felt while watching C9 is that rather than a regional gap, there was a need of emphasis on specific teams. I believe Worlds is only going to get more and more interesting to watch.
¤ All the teams that have made it to quarterfinals so far have Korean coaches. Lastly, could you say a few words to your fellow Korean coaches?
All the Korean coaches I know are older than me (laughs). But the thing is, winning has nothing to do with age, right? Because the whole purpose of coming to Worlds is to win, I will try my best to win. Since EDG has always fallen in the quarterfinals, this time, I promise that EDG will make it to the semifinals.
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