The first semi-final of the 2022 Mid-Season Invitational will take place on Friday 27 May and will see the Royal Never Give Up (LPL) against Evil Geniuses (LCS). Riot Games organized a Media Day today which included a press conference with the top two semi-finalists of the tournament. Here is an excerpt:
(For EG) How does it feel to be in the semifinals?
jojopyun : It’s crazy. It is an enriching experience.
Inspired: nothing special. It’s like another international tournament.
(To EG) During the Rumble Stage, you played twice and lost both times to RNG. Will things be different this time?
Jojo : We are in the mood to play to win and are better at bo5.
Inspired: They made mistakes the last time we played them and we hope we can punish those who made it in the semifinals too.
(For EG) How does it feel to reach the semi-finals in an international tournament?
jojopyun : We are happy to have come this far and believe we can go even further. It has been a very good experience so far.
Inspired: We feel like we weren’t good at first, even for basic things like moving around the map. We had to start from scratch and now we feel good enough.
(For EG and RNG) Which lane do you think you need to focus more on in the knockout stage?
jojopyun : We have to focus on all lanes
Inspired: I think the middle lane is the most important.
Wei: I think the most important thing is to focus on our game plan, I will make sure that our middle lane and our bottom lane can farm.
(To Xiaohu) Last year, during the MSI semi-finals, RNG coach “Poppy” said there were drawbacks to playing early in the program. Why did the team decide to play earlier this year?
Xiaohu : I think for professional players it doesn’t matter if you play before or after. You have a day to analyze the other team’s play if you play earlier, but I think you can keep the momentum going if you play later. Since we were the first seeds of the Rumble Stage, we simply exercised our right.
(To Xiaohu) What are the strengths of RNG compared to EG? What are the victory conditions for RNG?
Xiaohu : Honestly, I think our game should be played at the middle lane level. I know that I will do well in the laning phase, as well as make good calls during the game and have a good team synergy.
(To jojopyun) I heard you are a Korean Canadian. How does it feel here in South Korea? Also, since you are known to be blunt, is there anything you would like to say to Xiaohu?
jojopyun : I grew up in Canada, but my parents are Korean. I really love this country, especially the food, the landscape and everything in between. I’ve loved it every time I’ve been here. We have made many mistakes, but we have worked hard to correct them. We are confident we can win against RNG.
(To Xiaohu) G2’s performance dropped towards the end of the Rumble Stage. Despite this, why did RNG choose EG?
Xiaohu : It was more fun playing against EG.
(For Inspired) How does it feel to face RNG’s jungler / mid duo?
Inspired: I think he is a very focused player, and I got the impression that they had too much freedom in the game. I think we will have to stay focused on not making mistakes and making sure we limit the RNG moves.
(For RNG) What is the difference between playing offline and online?
Xiaohu : As a pro, I also want to play offline. It is really disappointing not to have been able to attend in person this year and to have missed some of the experiences that only professionals can get, such as setting up the equipment on stage.
(To Xiaohu) How has this year’s MSI experience changed from previous ones?
Xiaohu : Honestly, I think I’ve played all my games this year as if they were my last.
(To Xiaohu) How do you predict the score of T1 vs G2? Which mid lane would you rather tackle, caps or Faker?
Xiaohu : I think G2 can win if they are in top form that day, but if not, I think they will lose 0-3. I want to beat EG to face one of these teams as we lost to both of them on the Rumble Stage. I’m sure we’ll be able to beat them if we meet them in the final.
(To Xiaohu) As a competitor switching roles in the upper middle lane, what is the difference between the two lanes?
Xiaohu : I think I wasn’t bad at laning, but I was also lacking in game knowledge during the Spring Split. I think I’ve grown up since then. You have more freedom to help the other lanes, the macro side lane, and you have more power in team fights as the middle lane, but I think I’ll be able to stand out as the top lane as well.