Daily eSports has been with the Sonic Starleague since its first offline season and they continue to provide us with their wonderful coverage. This time we take a closer look at the winners of group B in the round of 32.
Please note that the short introductions aren't translations, DES of course wouldn't publish anything biased. Staying neutral while introducing PianO must have been a real test of endurance for Nam Yoon Sung. I hope you'll forgive me for failing. ^^ And as always, there may be some mistranslations. If you find any, please let me know.
Former STX SouL progamer Mini is known for his smart strategic play. He advanced into the round of 16 after easily disposing of firebathero in the first game on Sin Peaks of Baekdu and coming back from a huge early game disadvantage to best PianO on Fighting Spirit in the winners' match. Mini is excited to be playing at OGN's studio again and hopes to show the true face of a strategist. If he advances to the round of 8, he also promises us his signature battery play from his Proleague game against PianO.
You made round of 16 after winning two games. Thoughts?
I was sure I would advance.
You faced two Terrans. It looked like you prepared well.
I was done preparing for the PvZ soon and thinking I would advance if I can only beat PianO sunbae, I focused on my PvT practice.
You used carriers in your game against firebathero. Was there a specific reason?
You can't use arbiters against Terran on Peaks of Baekdu so all Protoss players are preparing for carriers. I expect most Protoss players to use carriers.
You fought an uphill battle against PianO in the winners' match. You were severely behind in the early game.
I wasn't able to warm up well for either of the games. I still struggled to work with the screen and mouse.
What was the opportunity that let you back in the game?
I don't think it was so much me playing well. After the initial disadvantage, PianO's attack didn't hurt me as much as I'd expected. I thought PianO would advance his forces while strengthening his defence and upgrading but when that didn't happen I thought I was okay. I defended with dragoons and my zealot agression worked out well, too.
Your goal for this season?
My first goal is advancing to round of 8. I want to win in the round of 16 at the Yongsan stadium and advance to round of 8.
In the past you were famous for your strategic play but it looks like you improved in engagements as well.
I didn't give much thought to firebathero. I was, however, quite worried about facing PianO, thinking he's better than me skill wise. In my old days I played well strategically but I didn't handle engagements well. Now it seems like I can handle engagements to some degree as well so the players facing me will have all kinds of things to worry about.
Anything you want to add?
When the groups were drawn I spent a lot of time thinking about the builds I would use. This wasn't the case in the last season so it reminded me of my progaming days.
Known as the TvZ bio specialist and battle cruiser lover, the ex-Woongjin Stars progamer PianO advanced second after beating Killer twice, the second time on Blue Storm. Losing to Mini in the winners' match despite a well deserved lead so decisive that Kim Carry proclaimed that even he could have won the game, what does our beloved TvP choker have to say in his defence? Very little but read his awesome interview anyway!
Thoughts on advancing?
I originally aimed to advance from first place but unfortunately it got a bit tougher. I am just very thankful to the people who helped me practise. During our progamer days, organized practice was possible but this is not the case now that we're streaming on Afreeca. SK Telecom's Larva helped me practise a lot and even drove me over to the studio. Yesterday, hero also turned his stream off to help me practise for which I thank him. Thanks to everyone for helping me in this uneasy situation.
What are your goals?
Last season I was eliminated after losing to Larva. This time I'll work hard so I can get to the quarter-final or even the semi-final. I'll do my utmost best to achieve this. I keep losing to Protoss so there's talk of me being a TvP choker* but I'll prove that that's not the case in the upcoming broadcasted games.
*토막[tomak] = a progamer that is awful against Protoss; most notably BoxeR, Casy and firebathero
Your vs. Zerg skills today were brilliant. Did you prepare for this Starleague in advance?
My vs. Zerg skills were always good. For this league Larva helped me practise the most and hero also turned his stream off to help me prepare despite having a lot of viewers at the time.
Killer won two Sonic Starleagues in a row. Were you not worried playing against him?
As long as it's a Zerg, I don't care who I'm facing. Blue Storm has never been an easy map to win TvZs on. I went into the game thinking that as long as I don't make any mistakes I won't lose. For beating Killer twice, I am sorry.
Your winners' match against Mini was unfortunate. You had the early game advantage but Mini made a comeback.
Losing the four tanks hurt me the most. I thought I wouldn't lose whether I pushed horizontally or vertically but, ahead in resources, my opponent pressured me back. I will work on my weak points and show good play in future games.
Which players would you like to meet in your group?
Movie is tricky but he's in a different group. Whoever comes, I don't care.
You will probably make many Zergs in this Starleague weep.
I have a good reputation as the TvZ specialist and I want to keep playing well in the future as well. The players' determination to win this Starleague is greater than it is in any other competition and with that in mind, players that practise the most will likely win. Even though they say my ability isn't as high in other matchups, since older maps are being used the player that prepares the best should win.
Your performance in the final game on Blue Storm was impressive.
Compared to Killer's my mistakes were relatively small. I also think I performed well.
Anything else on your mind?
The weather is cold and it's Christmas Eve so I want to thank the fans that still came to the studio. It really helped me a lot. Thank you for breaking the promises you gave to your girlfriends and coming to cheer on us.
Original interviews by Daily eSports journalist Nam Yoon Sung - firstname.lastname@example.org
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