Worlds 2022 group stage is over with Top Esports exiting the tournament early. The West has failed to compete with the East in general, only Rogue making it to the playoffs, and Vietnam and PCS could get a single win each. Let’s look at how we got here, and why these results were shocking or weren’t.
After the group stage, only two teams from each of the four groups made it to the playoffs. With seven teams, China and South Korea really outperformed the rest of the regions, and all four South Korean representatives will take their chances in the playoffs, while LPL misses Top Esports, one of the strongest teams in China.
Group A started as the most interesting group in Worlds 2022. In the first week, we saw North American champions Cloud9 completely out of sync with the meta. They took three defeats in a row and found themselves at the bottom of the table. The rest of the teams took a weirder road.
T1 crushed EDward Gaming, Fnatic dominated T1 and EDward Gaming outclassed Fnatic. All three teams finished the first week 2-1. The fate of the group would be decided in the second week.
However, Cloud9 decided to come back stronger for the second week: crushing Fnatic in the first game of the day, they also largely decided their fate. After that loss, Fnatic failed to get back up, and at the end of the day, T1 defeated EDward Gaming to take first place in Group A.
In Group B, G2 Esports failed to compete with JD Gaming and DWG KIA as Fnatic did. JDG and DK managed to show their strength from the first day, sending G2 and Evil Geniuses to the bottom of the group. Although DK looked better than expected, LPL champions also defeated DWG KIA in the first week of the groups to secure the advantage.
In the second week, Evil Geniuses followed the trend C9 set, defeating G2 Esports in the first game of the day and crushed their hopes of playoffs. DWG KIA defeated JD Gaming later that day to force a tie-breaker, which JD Gaming won and proceeded to the playoffs as first place.
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In Group C, we witnessed the best European team dominating the group, LEC champion Rogue. They managed to defeat DRX, Top Esports and GAM Esports, starting 3-0 and almost guaranteeing a spot in the playoffs. Top Esports further disappointed their fans by losing the game against DRX, starting 1-2.
Although they were defeated by Rogue, GAM Esports played even better and more passionate against Top Esports, defeating them in a back-and-forth match, an unforgettable one for both Vietnamese and LoL fans worldwide. With this loss, Top Esports were eliminated from Worlds 2022.
TES managed to defeat Rogue and DRX in the following games, forcing a tie-breaker between the two, but they couldn't get to the playoffs anymore. DRX won the tie-breaker to finish in the first place.
Finally in Group D, Chinese representatives Royal Never Give Up started out really well with 3-0 in a group which included LCK champs Gen.G. Gen.G managed to defeat the rest of the group to stay in the race, however. CTBC Flying Oyster found a victory against 100 Thieves, one of the biggest disappointments for North America in Worlds 2022.
In the second day, CTBC Flying Oyster and RNG were hit by Covid-19. CFO lost all their games, handing 100 Thieves their only win of the tournament. Later in the day, Gen.G defeated RNG and forced a tie-breaker for first place which they won. Covid-19 cases in RNG were a huge contributor to those losses, and RNG has to pray to recover fast to perform better in the quarter-finals.