An interview with UK casting duo Nymaera and Initialise at MSI 2023

By Lee Jones


May 18, 2023

Reading time: 3 min

UK casting duo Sam “Initialise” Hapgood and Alex “Nymaera” Hapgood talked to prior to the highly-anticipated upper bracket grand final between T1 and JD gaming. Here is their insight mid-MSI 2023.

The 2023 Mid-Season Invitational (MSI) is in full swing, now down to only four teams competing for the coveted trophy. The lower bracket games are still in motion, but all eyes are on T1 and JD gaming, the two powerhouses facing off each other for the first spot in the Grand Finals.

The two teams will match up on May 18, and before that, had the chance to chat with the popular casting duo of Nymaera and Initialise. 

MSI 2023 What are your predictions for the tournament overall, not just for the game between T1 and JD? 

Nymaera: I think if T1 loses today, I think they’re in a mental boom. Game 5 against Gen.G was a very important moment for T1 to win because Keria was about to like a mental boom. I think if they lose today, particularly if it’s a bad loss, hell, even if it’s a close loss, I think they might lose to Gen. G in the lower bracket. So for me, I think that if T1 loses, I think it is T1-Gen. G Finals. And then I think Gen. G wins that.

Initialise: I think I still edged T1 because all three teams are phenomenal team fighters. Unfortunately, I do think BLG is probably the lower rung on this one. They’ve got some talent. They could well surprise us and make us all eat our words.

But I think we saw in that T1 Gen. G series that T1 was a good team but was also just that little bit more ruthless in the early game. So I do give the edge to T1. But I think it does come with those caveats because, obviously, JDG and Gen. G are very talented. Let’s talk about the EU’s woes then, shall we? You guys are used to international disappointment, having closely followed the LJL. Do you think that helps?

Initialise: Yeah, I think there’s some truth to that. I think the other thing is it’s pretty clear that the issue isn’t the hands if you know what I mean. The talent is there. You’re looking at in EU, and you look at Yike, look how well he’s come up.

You look at MAD Lions, some amazing talent there. Chasy continued to grow as a top laner. They can definitely compete. The issue then becomes just making sure you are on the correct page with all the cheat codes in terms of how you are playing this meta in the most efficient and complete way possible.

If you want more of an opportunity to really threaten and really be a dark horse in a tournament, give yourself a bit more time to get into the meta. Give yourself a bit more time to be scrimming the really scary teams. Seeing that LJL struggled, Europe is struggling now. Did you both decide to move on, considering you’re starting to cover China now? Was that a conscious effort?

Nymaera: Look, the off-season is a weird and wonderful thing. Sometimes your own wishes are not really what comes across in that. So I’m like, I’m just trying to do as much as I can to make it, not my decision, so you don’t think it’s my decision. That’s what I’m saying. We get to watch really good League of Legends.

Initialise: And for me, we’re still trying to tell that where’s the opportunity. I had an opportunity to do some LDL stuff. It was great.


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