This article contains spoilers for day 10 of Worlds 2019, IG vs GRF. You can find the full series on LoL Esports.
The League of Legends World Championship Quarterfinals kicked off on October 26th with Invictus Gaming vs GRIFFIN. Now that the groups and the round-robin format are over with, the games are now a best of 5 series.
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It’s no secret that the meta this year has been very interesting. The variety has been amazing this year; we’ve seen 83 different champions played throughout the Worlds tournament. Of course, some of these picks involve very interesting strategies, such as the Garen + Yuumi combo that GRF picked for this game. Their other picks included Gnar, Elise, and Poppy. IG responded to the high tank, low damage GRF team with some hyper damage champions. They picked Yasuo, Gragas, Qiyanna, Kog’Maw, and Lulu. IG was on the blue side and GRF was red.
The beginning of the game was in GRF’s favor. They used TP advantage and took 2 kills. IG, on the other hand, tried to kill Garen with 4 people, but they couldn’t finish him. The tank comp was unkillable, and it was working. When GRF went to take the Rift Herald, the lack of damage on their team began to show. They took a lot of damage from the Herald, couldn’t kill it, and then failed to kill the Kog’Maw while IG moved in to contest. IG got caught a few times after that, but by the end of the game, GRF’s minimal initial burst damage was not enough. IG won the first game thanks to a failed team comp by GRF.
The meta took a turn back to the normal this game. IG was on the red side with Kayle, Lee Sin, Leblanc, Kai’Sa, and Nautilus. GRF had Jayce, Jarven, Galio, Xayah, and Rakan.
This game got exciting a lot faster than the previous with an early fight over the bot side Rift Scuttler. GRF had lane priority in both mid and bot at the time, so they grouped quickly. IG went to respond and had GRF surrounded, but GRF jumped on the nearest target and took a quick kill. The kill went to Viper on Xayah, and this was crucial to GRF’s next play, a hard gank and dive for both another kill and bot tower. They found their lead against IG, and they were going for it. GRF continued to push in for map control. Xayah became very rich and they took all outer turrets. IG kept afloat and snuck in Mountain Drakes against GRF.
When Baron came around, GRF couldn’t finish it fast enough and ended up in a split fight. From then on, TheShy on Kayle found the late game and GRF’s backline. IG’s siege was messier than GRF’s, but they managed to turn the game thanks to the Mountain Drakes and an impressive Kayle. IG took their second win of the series.
GRF started to look desperate, and in their desperation, they decided to go all in the late game meta. They were on the red side again for this game with Kayle, Elise, Sion, Xayah, and Rakan. IG took Vlad, Lee Sin, Qiyana, Kai’Sa, and Morgana.
The mid lane Sion did work for GRF at the beginning of the game. They managed a tower dive at 5 minutes that turned into a kill and an Ocean Drake. IG wanted to prevent the Sion roams, so they swapped top and mid. GRF matched them. Solo plays managed to keep IG in the game for a while. GRF methodically pushed for objectives much like in the second game, but this time Viper played well on Xayah, they won fights, and they got Baron. Viper claimed a penta kill, and GRF won the game with a dominant play style.
For the fourth game, GRF was on the blue side with Jayce, Karthus, Sion, Xayah, and Rakan. IG had Kayle, Gragas, Aatrox, Kai’Sa, and Leona.
This game was fairly straightforward. GRF had the confidence to play Karthus (who is notorious for not being able to gank well) in the jungle. They also had Sion which worked well for them previously. The teams traded kills back and forth across the map, and GRF picked up an Ocean Drake. The fight for Rift Herald turned into a smite fight won by IG. They picked up kills, Herald, and a turret thanks to that fight. By now, the jungle Karthus pick was starting to haunt GRF. They missed jungle objectives and lost map pressure. IG, on the other hand, started to win fights and took Baron. They also ended up with a late-game fed Kayle while GRF’s Karthus was doing minimal damage. IG won the fourth game handly and took the series victory.
GRF struggled to find a strong team composition multiple times. When they found an early lead, they made mistakes, got caught, and fought split team fights. IG looked like the team they were when they won Worlds last year. They had a difficult MSI and they still favor individual ability over team play, but they are a strong contender this year.
IG won the series 3-1.
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