There are two groups of deaths in the 2019 LoL World Championship. There’s the obvious Group C, stacked with legacy teams, and there’s Group A. Cloud9 started Worlds 2019 with a win against Hong Kong Attitude, but lost to MSI champions, G2 Esports in the fastest game of the Group Stage. After their loss, head coach Bok “Reapered” Han-gyu spoke with Inven Global.
※ This interview was conducted after their match against G2 Esports on Day 3.
How do you feel being 1-1?
I’m neither happy nor discontent. I think we should just try to go forward in a positive way.
You played against Garen-Yuumi. How was it?
In the current version, Garen-Yuumi is a very annoying bot composition. We’ve often played against the comp before in scrims. Hong Kong Attitude hasn’t used this comp before. I thought they may have prepared it after the Play-ins, but even if they did, I thought their skill level of the composition wouldn’t be very high since it’s been prepared for about only a week. So we ruled that out, but they did pick it (Laughs). Going into the game, we just thought we should accept it if they do pick it. Although it was stressful, it’s fortunate that we won.
How was the Heimerdinger pick?
Heimer is a champion that can become hot in the current meta. He has good lane control in the early game and there are variables he can create in teamfights through his ultimate. It’s a pick that can be useful if you want to strengthen the early-mid game.
Deftly was known for playing Heimerdinger bot. Do you think that was helpful? Did he help Sneaky in playing the champion?
When Heimerdinger started to appear in scrims or solo queue, Deftly and Sneaky both played him. We tested the champion and evaluated him, ended up using him. So I would say he was quite helpful.
Last Worlds, you brought Blaber and Goldenglue. This time, it’s Deftly. Can you tell me the reason?
Deftly is young and talented. He has potential, but he needs experience. Especially, I wanted to have a sub player in bot lane.
This time, you had bootcamp in EU. How did that go?
It was the first time we’ve had our bootcamp in EU, but it was a bit difficult for me because of the food. The players adapted well, though. However, they did prefer bootcamping in Korea (Laughs).
I saw you write ‘fml’ in the LCK Korea Twitch chat when C9 was assigned to Group A.
(Laughs) We could have gone to Group B, but we got Group A, so I kind of had some mixed feelings. It was because of Group B. Frankly, there are no easy groups in Worlds. Wherever we go, it becomes a group of death. We’ve always managed to crawl out of groups, so I guess we would again this time as well. (Laughs)
Last year, you made it to the semis. How far do you think you can go this year?
Whenever we come to Worlds, we empty our minds. I don’t know how high we can get or how early we’d be eliminated. I think C9 is a team that adapts and improves every moment to become stronger.
NA’s level of play is always not that high compared to other major regions. The only way we can get far into the tournament is to play against and watch other high-level teams, and play catch-up. This time, I honestly don’t know how far we can go. Every single day is valuable experience. We should try harder, always trying to learn.
You played against MSI champion, G2 as well. How was it?
It was better than I thought. The primary goal was to make the game bloody. After making it bloody, we tried to pounce on them while it was messy, but they were really good. G2 attacked us through places where we were missing. I think we should be more prepared for the next match.
How are you planning to play the remaining group stage games?
They’re all difficult to play against… Well… I’ll do my best. (Laughs) There’s not much to say.
How far do you think NA teams will go?
Liquid is doing well, and as for Clutch… They need more experience, but they’re obviously in the most difficult group... What can they do? I can’t really say how far NA would make it, but I do wish at least one team makes it to the semis again this year.
NA vs EU?
Lastly, a comment to the fans?
Thank you for always cheering for us C9. We’re practicing every day so that we can improve our performances to repay the fans for their support. Please keep an eye on us improving every day. We’ll do our best. Thank you.