Defending League of Legends world champions SK Telecom won its first game of the day Sunday, taking down Cloud9 19-11 after 50 minutes despite a spirited effort from the North American team. With the win, SKT has to win just one of its final two games of the day to earn a spot in the quarterfinal.
Cloud9 drops to 2-2 with the loss, tied with I May for second place in the group. While the other two North American teams have already been eliminated from Worlds, C9 is by no means out of it, able to control its own fate by winning the rest of its games.
SKT drafted a composition with little natural tankiness, and after falling behind early it looked like C9 might be able to secure the big upset. Meteos’s Olaf ganked bot early, getting Flash from Wolf’s Zyra. A return gank a few minutes later earned First Blood for Sneaky’s Ezreal.
Cloud9 smartly used Smoothie’s Alistar in the early game to build off that lead, having him roam with Meteos and pick off SKT targets. SKT was able to stall the game and farm, and took the first turret of the game to take a gold lead.
Ultimately, Cloud9’s K.O.R.E.A. comp (Kennen, Olaf, Ryze, Ezreal, Alistar) was not enough to take down the Korean giants. C9 was occasionally caught out by SKT, especially by Blank’s Lee Sin, and usually gave up big objectives as a result.
By the late game, SKT was firmly in control, clinically taking objectives and map control. A final fight outside C9’s base at 49 minutes went 4-1 in SKT’s favor, winning the game.
In the first game of the day, I May beat Flash Wolves once again thanks to another late throw by the LMS squad.