The 2021 League of Legends World Championship has welcomed a large variety of unique and interesting picks in surprising roles. Tryndamere mid, Talon jungle and solo lane Graves are only a few of the new faces seen so far in Iceland.
On Saturday, during the Worlds 2021 quarterfinals series between Royal Never Give Up and Edward Gaming, RNG mid laner Yuan “Cryin” Cheng-Wei added a new, yet familiar, name to this list: Annie.
Annie might be one of the most iconic champions in League, yet this year she’s only been picked once throughout the major regions and international competition this year. The player who locked the pick in was Team Liquid’s Nicolaj Jensen during the League Championship Series Mid-Season Showdown against TSM. It was also picked during 2021 European Masters and the League of Legends Circuit Oceania.
According to LoL esports statistics account, this is the first Annie pick at an international event since Worlds 2015. Additionally, Cryin has never locked in the pick before in his professional career.
That's an Annie! It's the first Annie at an international event since Worlds 2015, when she was regularly played as a Support! Cryin himself has not played Annie so far in his competitive career! #Worlds2021 pic.twitter.com/rk4xyu94Wt— LoLEsports Stats (@LoLEsportsStats) October 23, 2021
In recent years, the pick has been popularized by League content creator and analyst Nick “LS” De Cesare and the North American streamer Annie Bot, who one-tricks the champion.
In a mid lane meta full of Twisted Fate, Ryze, LeBlanc and Orianna, seeing a “noob champion” like Annie drafted came as a surprise for broadcast talent and onlookers alike. So far, Cryin has played five games of Twisted Fate, one game of Galio and one game of LeBlanc at Worlds 2021.
After champion select, the internet exploded in discussion around the Dark Child. Here are some of the best reactions to Cryin’s pocket Annie pick at Worlds 2021.
Renato “Shakarez” Perdigão, League of Legends European Championship Video Producer
Cryin is that gold player in your all diamond clash team.— Renato Perdigão (@Shakarez) October 23, 2021
He doesn't have hands but he knows his place, respect the Annie pick
“Cryin is that gold player in your all diamond Clash team. He doesn’t have hands, but he knows his place. Respect the Annie pick,” Shakarez said.
Marius “Veigar v2” Aune, Cloud9 Coach
annie is a good champ but hard to play vs ezreal, its not bad vs ryze tho, especially with being solo AP and solo CC #Worlds2021— Veigarv2 (@Veigar_v2) October 23, 2021
“Annie is a good champ but hard to play vs. Ezreal, it’s not bad vs. Ryze though, especially with being solo AP and solo CC #Worlds2021,” Veigar v2 said.
Jackson “Pabu” Pavone, Pentanet.GG Jungler
Annie a bit hard for Cryin, we can do Malphite or Garen next game? #Worlds2021 #Verizon5GAllChat— Jackson Pavone (@Pabu22) October 23, 2021
“Annie a bit hard for Cryin, can we do Malphite or Garen next game?” Pabu said.
Isaac “Azael” Cummings-Bentley, LCS Color Caster
Really respect Cryin first timing Annie on stage 👍#Worlds2021— Isaac CB (@AzaelOfficial) October 23, 2021
“Really respect Cryin first timing Annie on stage,” Azael said.
Daniel Drakos, LEC Play-by-Play Caster
To be fair, with how much @LSXYZ9 talks up Annie I too would assume I could one shot anyone with zero items.— Daniel Drakos (@DanielDrakos) October 23, 2021
“To be fair, with how much @LSXYZ9 talks up Annie, I too would assume I could one-shot anyone with zero items,” Drakos said.
LS, League content creator for T1
Cryin found my patreon soloq tierlist and just decided to first time it I guess #Worlds2021— LS (@LSXYZ9) October 23, 2021
“Cryin found my Patreon solo queue tier list and just decided to first-time it, I guess,” LS said.
Pop culture consumer and League of Legends thought-haver. Working on becoming a weirder person.