Chinese esports organization FunPlus Phoenix has recruited Chen “REFRA1N” Kuan-Ting as an assistant coach. The Taiwanese coach will join the 2019 World Championships winner, alongside head coach Chen “WarHorse” Ju-Chih and coach Zhou “Despa1r” Li-Peng.
— kenzi (@kenzi131) January 10, 2020
REFRA1N joins FunPlus Phoenix
“We are happy to announce that REFRA1N, the coach of the only team that 1:1’ed us [at] the 2019 World Championships, has joined us as an assistant coach,” wrote FunPlus Phoenix in a Twitter post.
The 26-year-old started his competitive League of Legends career as a jungler for teams like Wayi Spider, Flash Wolves, Taipei Assassins, and J Team. He later alternated between the substitute role and main roster, before moving back to Flash Wolves for a short stint. This is where the Taiwanese player tried out serving as a member of the coaching staff, which he continued after returning to J Team.
J team finished first in the 2019 League of Legends Master Series (LMS) Summer Playoffs. This result granted them qualification toward the 2019 World Championships. However, J Team didn’t make it out of the Groups stage and ended in 9 – 12th place. Nevertheless, the team performed well against FunPlus Phoenix in Group B, with J Team’s surprise victory in one of the matches.
Living up to LPL expectations
With the Chinese powerhouse later taking home the championship trophy, the addition of REFRA1N seems like a suitable choice. FunPlus Phoenix heads into the 2020 League of Legends Pro League (LPL) season with the same core roster. This time, they have a championship title to hold on to and expectations will be extremely high.
Invictus Gaming won the 2018 World Championships, but seemed to face troubles during the Spring Split and especially the Summer Split. With the LPL winning back-to-back World Championships events, there are new competitors in the Chinese scene who are looking to overthrow FunPlus Phoenix from their throne. Can they continue their winning streak?