Worlds 2022 Play-in Day 1: European Teams Reign Supreme

Sadakshi Kalyan Ramun
Updated On: 
Day 1 of Worlds 2022 Play-in Stage saw both teams from Group A and B play.
The games were delayed as teams reported COVID-19 positive cases in their camps
Players who tested COVID-19 positive played from isolated facilities provided by Riot Games

The Play-in stage of League of Legends Worlds 2022 kicked off on 29th September with best-of-one (BO1) games featuring teams from both Group A and B. The teams are participating in the opening stage of the tournament from Mexico City, Mexico. The matches were delayed as players tested positive for COVID-19 and had to play the games from their respective isolation booths provided by Riot Games. The broadcast was entertaining as the casters kept the fans engaged through the long pauses.

The following were the results of Worlds 2022 Play-in Day 1:

  • Isurus (ISG) vs MAD Lions (MAD): MAD Lions

  • Evil Geniuses (EG) vs Fnatic (FNC): Fnatic

  • LOUD vs Beyond Gaming (BYG): Beyond Gaming

  • MAD Lions (MAD) vs Istanbul Wildcats: MAD Lions

  • Chiefs Esports Club (CHF) vs Fnatic: Fnatic

  • DetonatioN FocusMe (SFM) vs LOUD: LOUD

  • Saigon Buffalo (SGB) vs Istanbul Wildcats: Saigon Buffalo

  • DRX vs Royal Never Give Up (RNG): DRX

MAD Lions roars on stage against Isurus

Isurus walked into the matchup as the team with the home ground advantage against MAD Lions, one of the strongest teams in the Play-in stage. The early game went in favor of MAD Lions and the team collected first-blood seconds into the game. At 12 minutes, the MAD Lions had a gold lead of 3K gold. But the wombo-combo of Isurus helped the team pick up vital kills and close the gold gap. Following a Baron misplay by MAD, Isurus collected multiple kills, pushed towers, and went toe-to-toe with its opponent. However, MAD secured its third Baron at 38 minutes and closed out the game soon after.

Fnatic stomps Evil Geniuses

The Evil Geniuses vs Fnatic game was the featured matchup of the day. Game 2 had a slow start but Fnatic picked up early advantages including first blood, Rift Herald, first dragon, and the tower. At 21 minutes, Fnatic was ahead by 5K gold over Evil Geniuses and three minutes later, FNC picked up multiple kills and secured the Baron Nashor. It was an easy win for Fnatic as it broke open EG’s mid lane and shattered the nexus in under 30 minutes.

Beyond Gaming wins against LOUD

The LOUD vs Beyond Gaming matchup was action-packed and was very back and forth. At 22 minutes, BYG had 11 kills, three dragons, and a 4K gold lead over LOUD. BYG also killed multiple members of LOUD and secured Baron Nashor. The Pacific Championship Series (PCS) squad soon collected the Hextech soul and took control over most of the map, pressurizing LOUD. After winning a big team fight in the jungle, BYG closed out the game in 29 minutes.

MAD Lions ends Day 1 with two wins

MAD Lions’ second game was against Istanbul Wildcats. Despite having a good start to the game, MAD Lions faltered in the middle and caused Istanbul Wildcats to make a comeback in the matchup. At 15 minutes, MAD had five kills under its belt along with a 4K gold lead however, IW started stacking dragons. A few minutes, MAD was caught out by IW which punished the European squad and took back some control of the map. MAD’s goal was to stall the dragon soul point for IW and the team cleverly played around it and its ADC William “UNF0RGIVEN” Nieminen, who collected a quadra kill. The MAD Lions squad was able to close out the game in 37 minutes.

Chiefs Esports Club drops a game to Fnatic

The Oceania team of Chiefs Esports Club (CHF) was the clear underdog going into the matchup against Fnatic on Day 1 of Worlds 2022 Play-in. The team matched the early kills of Fnatic but soon the men in orange started to snowball their lead. Fnatic secured Baron Nashor at 23.45 minutes and destroyed CHF’s tier-two turrets. Fnatic’s ADC Elias "Upset" Lipp collected a pentakill on Kalista and the team pushed into CHF’s base and ended the game.

DFM starts Worlds 2022 run with a loss

DetonatioN FocusMe, the team from the Japanese league, has always been a consistent performer on the international stage of League of Legends esports. However, the team suffered a loss at the hands of LOUD on Day 1 of the Play-in stage as it failed to match LOUD’s aggression in the early game. At 20-minutes, LOUD killed four DFM members and turned to Baron Nashor, and used the buff to break open its base. LOUD secured its first win at Worlds 2022 in 23 minutes.

Saigon Buffalo wins against Istanbul Wildcats

The early game was equal in terms of gold earned and kills picked up by the teams. But Istanbul Wildcats picked up the Rift Herald buff and the dragon and picked up a slight gold advantage. Saigon Buffalo came back into the match after it won the fight near the third dragon and soon after picked up Baron Nashor. The second Baron also went to SGB and this helped the team to take down IW’s nexus.

DRX picks up massive victory against RNG

DRX and RNG are two of the biggest organizations from the east in League of Legends esports and they faced each other in the final match of the day. China’s RNG was in control of the game for the most part of the early game as it stacked two dragons and collected three kills but after its top laner Chen “Breathe” Chen was caught out by DRX, the tempo of the game changed. Suddenly, DRX’s ADC Kim “Deft” Hyuk-kyul picked up a triple kill. However, RNG fought back as the team stole away Baron Nashor from the Korean squad at 31 minutes. The fight that DRX won near the soul point at the dragon pit, helped the team push into RNG’s base and win the game.

It was a long first day at Worlds 2022 for all the teams participating in the tournament, the media, and Riot’s crews as game delays pushed Day 1 broadcast to 11 hours, with the last game starting in the middle of the night. Going into Day 2, Riot Games should be better prepared to handle these delays and technical pauses.

Stay updated with the tournament by heading on to  Worlds 2022 Play-in: Teams, Groups, Schedule & More.

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Sadakshi has been a gamer throughout her life and has followed League of Legends since Season 3, immediately falling in love with the esports scene. Bringing in her print journalism experience, she focuses on content that is both informative and innovative. While her heart still remains with League, her love for competition has pushed her to explore other titles such as Valorant and Apex Legends.

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