Suning and Top Esports face off against each other in the semifinals after their victories in their respective quarterfinals at Worlds 2020.
Suning has been the surprise of the year with their level of performance. It is remarkable to see a team like Suning get so much better compared to the LPL Summer Split and Playoffs. On the other side of the matchup, Top Esports looked like they were in trouble 2 games into their quarterfinal’s series. However, they mounted a comeback to win their quarterfinals with a reverse sweep. Let’s breakdown how they performed in the quarterfinals, what to expect in the semifinals and predictions.
The Matchup at a glance
Suning has been the dark horse in this tournament so far. Winning Group A with G2 Esports being in that group and then beat one of the favorites JDG in the semifinals. We know of the household name in SwordArt being their most known and accomplished player and then a very experienced and unique jungler in SOFM manning the helm.
However, the biggest asset of this team especially in the quarterfinals has been their rookie ADC huanfeng. He posted a whopping 704 Damage Per Minute in the quarterfinals along with a 14.0 overall KDA in the series. With an experienced support player along with him, he has shined in this team. Suning also has a very aggressive top laner and a consistent mid laner.
On the flip side, Top Esports(TES) have been the frontrunner in many people’s eyes to win it all. However, their struggles in the quarterfinals can cause some aspersions to that expectation. Fnatic found a way to punish TES in the first two games. However, TES managed to win the last 3 games to clinch the semifinals.
Credit to TES for winning the series, however, there are question marks to whether it was TES kicking up a gear that got them the series win or was it Fnatic choking it away. Regardless of that, one bright spot for TES was their resilience to mount a comeback. Knight and Karsa were the biggest catalysts in that series victory.
Even though both teams are from the LPL, their playstyles differ even though they like to fight for objectives. The stylistic difference between both teams is primarily due to their junglers. SOFM is a jungler that is efficient and will jungle efficiently and prioritizes early game efficient jungling as opposed to enabling laners. In contrast to that, Karsa really wants to get involved and get his laners ahead.
TES have very good laners all across the board with 369 manning the top lane, Knight dubbed as the best player at Worlds going into the tournament in the mid lane, and 2018 World Champion JackeyLove and a talented rookie in yuyanjia in the bot lane. Karsa in the jungle, enables these highly talented laners to win games and gain victories. They are a team that will snowball a lead very well and will fight for objectives.
Suning is a team of three rookies and 2 very experienced players. SwordArt is one of the most decorated players from a former league in the LMS. SOFM is a veteran with a lot of experience but it is his first time at Worlds. Then, there are three rookies in Bin, Angel, and huanfeng who have played really well, especially huanfeng. They are not an early game aggressive team but have good control over objectives in their games.
Looking deeply at the matchup, TES could have a mismatch that they can exploit in the mid lane. Angel has played well but he is no Knight. On the other hand, Fnatic did give a blueprint on how to beat TES through the bot lane and whether Suning will emphasize on it will be something to watch for. Given Suning’s style of play, it is unlikely that they hard focus on the bot lane, so that should not be of huge concern to TES. The top lane can prove to be a deal breaker in some of these games with Bin being a very aggressive laner and 369 being very steady.
With that said, lets move on to the win conditions for each team.
Win Conditions for Top Esports
- Knight has to be great: Its as simple as that, Knight needs to be the player he has been lauded for pre-tournament. He has to be their main carry and guide TES to the Finals.
- Karsa cannot be behind: Karsa was shambolic in the first two games against Fnatic. However, when he turned up his gear, TES dominated the jungle. Again, whether that was Fnatic disappearing especially on Selfmade’s part or not is yet to be determined. Regardless, when Karsa has an impact over the map, TES tend to win games so that should be a focus for them.
- Protect that bot lane: They are going to be facing another great bot lane in the tournament so far and Fnatic gave them fits there. They cannot have a repeat of the quarterfinals against a team that is better than Fnatic. Protecting the bot lane is key as JackeyLove struggled to have great performances in that series and yuyanjia being targeted on many occasions.
Win Conditions for Suning
- Target that bot lane: JackeyLove looked out of sorts when he is behind, there is no other way around it. Also, yuyanjia has had bad games and there are ways to exploit his bad play. Suning should focus on that bot lane because that is one of TES’s weakness shown in the quarterfinals and huanfeng and SwordArt being one of their biggest strengths in the bot lane.
- SOFM needs to shine: When SOFM is playing well, good things happen for Suning. SOFM is their catalyst and as long as he puts out good performances, Suning can win any game.
- Get Bin ahead in the top lane: Bin has proven to be a very good top lane carry at Worlds. Enabling him can only mean good things for Suning and he has played a lot of carry top laners.
Final Remarks and Predictions
For the semifinals 2, we are going to go with Top Esports winning the series 3-2. The reason for that is simply because Knight is a better mid laner than Angel and we expect Knight to lead TES to a victory. Based on percentages, its a 55%-45% in favor of TES winning. There must be credit given to Suning for coming this far and showing up when it mattered for them. They have played outstanding and they should not be underestimated.
Its going to be a cracker of a series and Worlds 2020 has been great so far. Suning and Top Esports play on Sunday in Semifinals 2.