Melany M. June 28, 2019
Fnatic kept their undefeated status through Rift Rivals 2019.
The third seed from Europe took down Team Liquid in a dominant fashion in its first game of the tournament. The win followed up a strong start to the event for the LEC.
Bottom lane quickly proved to be the biggest battleground in the early game. Fnatic was aggressive and looked for engagements while Team Liquid managed to repel the attacks and get kills while playing a slower, more reserved style.
In his first appearance at an international tournament, Daniel “Dan” Hockley started in the jungle for Fnatic. Dan wasn’t as synchronized with the team as usual starter Mads “Broxah” Brock-Pedersen but Fnatic still managed to find picks.
Fnatic support Zdravets “Hylissang” Iliev Galabov thrived on his signature Rakan to set up Martin “Rekkles” Larsson and made his presence felt across the map. He roamed early to the mid lane to help Tim “Nemesis” Lipovsek with his matchup against Nicolaj “Jensen” Jensen while Liquid’s Jo “CoreJJ” Yong-in tried to do the same with mixed results.
Nemesis on Corki and Rekkles on Xayah became the win condition for Fnatic. At 21 minutes, they secured the first baron buff of the match and pushed for the inhibitor turrets.
The long siege allowed Fnatic to get full vision control on Team Liquid’s jungle. A second baron helped Fnatic to continue the siege. Team Liquid refused to retreat and tried to fight but Fnatic refused any engagements and kept the pressure on the inhibitors.
In the final fight, Fnatic killed four Team Liquid players inside the base and destroyed the nexus.
On game three of the day, Origen defeated Team SoloMid while Fnatic secured a second win against Cloud9.The results left LCS fans disappointed as the North American representatives played a passive style that led to a 4-0 start for the LEC.
C9, Team Liquid, and TSM will look to bounce back on day two.