G2 Esports opened up the Mid-Season Invitational with a dominant win over SK Telecom T1 before getting a taste of their own medicine from reigning World Champions Invictus Gaming. They ended the first day of groups with a 1-1 record, despite having the hardest day one schedule of any team.
Before G2’s match against T1, winning this match seemed like a longshot for the LEC champs. Who would pick an auto-filled AD Carry with an injured support who hasn’t practiced seriously in months over the best bot lane in the world?
Fortunately for G2, they had Martin “Wunder” Hansen to apply extra pressure in the top lane. This let their bot lane build significant leads throughout the game. It also helped that G2 support Mihael “Mikyx” Mehle (who is recovering from a wrist injury) took first blood.
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That was just one of nine kills in the game, though, making it one of the cleanest matches in an otherwise bloody first day of MSI’s group stage.
G2 used the threat of their solo lanes to help Xayah scale up before shoving into SKT’s base. Their ability to finesse this win without relying on cheese was possible because they played so well to their win condition, but G2 did almost the opposite during their second match of the day against Invictus.
After a pause that lasted over an hour due to technical issues, the fated Worlds 2018 rematch between G2 and Invictus started off strong for the European representatives with three straight kills in the top lane from jungler Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski. But shortly after, IG top laner Kang “TheShy” Seung-lok took over the game through sheer mechanical skill to deny G2 their second win of the day.
G2 were able to go toe-to-toe with their toughest opponents in the tournament on day one, and they’re looking like a major threat despite an even record. They kick off day two of the group stage against Team Liquid (2-0) at 12:00 a.m. PDT, before facing the Flash Wolves (0-2) at 4:00 a.m. PDT.