The third day of the round of 16 streamed live from OGN's studio featured Mong vs Pure, free vs JangBi, Sea.KH vs sSak and Larva vs GuemChi in the third matches of each of the four groups.
Mong beat Pure despite suffering some damage from an early DT opening by dropship play powered by Pure's building placement. Mong is now leading the group with a clean 2-0 score and he's hoping to seal the deal with 3 kills in his last match against Mini on Sin Peaks of Baekdu.
You are the first player to score two wins in the round of 16. How does it feel?
It's a great relief. I should be able to relax even more in the last game. I prepared for today's game really hard so the win feels that much more special.
How did you prepare for today?
I generally practise a lot so truthfully I would've been okay not preparing. But I practised like mad to win the game and maybe the pressure made me even more nervous.
You couldn't defend the Dark Templar agression and found yourself cornered.
It didn't go as far as me having a mental breakdown but still I got nervous. I knew that Pure would use DTs but being unable to kill the first one I was taken aback. I thought that my chances might be over, too.
Your turned the tide of the game with dropships.
I originally decided against using dropships but the situation was so dire that it was the only option. I was thinking that if I just went along with the game then no matter how well I'd play I would lose. This impromptu play worked well.
The opponent made dropships a good option with the building placement in his main.
That felt good. (laughs) His buildings really favored drop ship play. I was a bit lucky too, I guess. (laughs)
You will be facing Mini next. How do you think that will turn out?
We'll see, but for me, Mini is not a player I'd specifically like to avoid. Much like until now, I don't want to drop a single game. I want to score three games and advance from first place in any case.
You performed at an offline stage. How was it?
As much as I can do well onlline, I am not yet recognized at the offline stage. While my goal is to win the league, the ultimate goal is to make a name for myself.
The water bottle force is not a joke?
I became thirsty. (laughs) But when I don't drink water I feel oddly empty. I can gulp 500 mililitres in the blink of an eye so I prepared 1.5 litres. (laughs)
Any final words?
I would like to thank all the fans that went all the way over to cheer on me. Also, my girlfriend has been sick so I hope she gets better soon.
In the clash of the Dragons, the last OSL champion outplayed free in a short but tense match with some pre-game mind games. JangBi now has a 1-1 record and the thought of having to win a PvT against PianO on Return of the King doesn't make him very pleased.
You won the duel of Dragons. How do you feel?
Yongtae hyung (free) has outstanding unit control. I was astonished during the entire game. Still, being able to play calm I was able to win.
How is playing with the fans cheering for you after such a long time?
It's been a year since I retired. Being supported by the fans and playing the game, I'm reminded of the old times. I also heard the viewing rates are awesome so I'm very thankful. Now that it's all coming back I feel the pressure to win. (laughs)
The pressure must have been high with the one loss.
I could've been more relaxed with a win, it was burdensome with the loss. I practised all the way until 3 AM and couldn't sleep well. Since I won today I feel more comfortable and should be able to sleep well. (laughs)
free's spirit was high recently so you must have been worried.
I felt the pressure but I wasn't nervous. Even today I was confident. I thought I'd be facing a reaver but looking at the builds today, Yongtae hyung prepared one that didn't include that. If I played safe I could have easily lost.
Actually, I played free once in preparation for the round of 32 and I used this build. It was a mind game with free. Perhaps because I used it once, free thought I wouldn't use it.
Did the loss against Mind affect your mentality?
My head hurt a lot after the loss. Since I'll be playing a Terran on Return of the King in the next game, what can I say. I thought there was no way I'd lose against Mind but there were problems with the settings since the start. People may say this just an excuse, but it was overdue and I couldn't set everything up to the way I like it before going into the game. So I was even more frustrated. Of course, while it was because of the settings, the truth is my skill level is still not where it used to be. It looks like I'll have to work even harder.
Anything else you would like to add?
Since my skill is still not what it used to be, I feel like I should apologize. Even so, it is gradually improving so I hope you will cheer for me. I will continue to show you good games.
Brood War still receives a lot of love and I hope events will continue in the future as well.
So far an easy ride brought sSak up to 2 kills after a deadly timing against hero and a scary goliath production rate versus Sea.KH's carriers. sSak's first true test in the round of 16 should be the upcoming game against Snow on Blue Storm.
You scored two kills. How do you feel?
Seeing my opponent I thought I could win easily but he prepared well. Being careless I almost loss. It's a relief I won.
Did you not expect your opponent to use carriers?
From what I heard he doesn't like carriers. Knowing that, I thought he'd be using a different build and being scouted first, I started the game at a disadvantage. So, I just played reactively.
They say PvT is difficult for the Protoss on Return of the King.
It's okay for Terran against Protoss but since other maps are naturally good for Protoss you can't whine about map imbalance. (laughs) Didn't Brood War Protoss players always whine about map balance? (laughs) When a Terran player whines, fans tend to say what's up with that, so even whining about TvP being impossible on Sin Peaks of Baekdu is difficult. (laughs)
Your last opponent in this round is Snow. Are you confident?
The map is bad for Terrans and Snow is a good player so it will be difficult. But I have a strong desire to achieve 3 kills.
If you were to evaluate Mong as a fellow Terran.
He's already an acknowledged player online. I thought he's a good Terran and Sejong (Pure) was nervous as well. He normally plays well but he was very nervous and made mistakes.
You're a favorite to win the Starleague.
Isn't it still a long way to the finals? Rather than thinking about the finals I think I'll need to work more to get even just a bit further. People around me do say that this is my big chance.
Anything else you would like to add?
I was nervous because I forgot to bring a hot pack with me today but Seung Hyun (GuemChi) gave me one so I was able to win. I hope he'll be able to do well in his next game.
Falling victim to HiyA in his first game, Larva strikes back by outplaying GuemChi on Blue Storm. If he manages to get past Last on Fighting Spirit, Larva could still make something happen for the Zergs with his solid ZvP.
What are your impressions after winning at OGN's stage?
I still didn't quite realize it. Since I couldn't win with a good performance I don't think I'm satisfied.
What play did you not like?
All drones in my main died to a DT and I couldn't take care of my hydras well either. I also should have produced a lot of drones at an optimal timing and I couldn't do that.
You just seem to be nervous at OGN's stage.
Is it not the stage I dreamt about? Watching Starleagues and dreaming of becoming a progamer, the idea of playing at the stage made my heart flutter.
Starting the round of 16 with a loss was burdensome.
It was very burdensome but since the opponent is good at pressuring I made sure I took the initiative in the game.
You were behind when your first hydra attack was defended.
Since the opponent went for a fast third nexus, his zealot numbers weren't so good and the leg speed upgrade was late as well, so I came up with a unit mix and devoted myself to that. I knew that as long as I kept pressuring him I wouldn't lose.
You wanted to lose the image of a weak offline player.
I disliked that the viewers who first saw me through OGN's brodcasts evaluated me as a weak player. I'm still not a well known player and I think I'll have to get to the semifinals to get rid of that image.
What's your real personality like? In your streams you provoke a lot but you have the reputation of a sincere player.
If things are serious I take them seriously and if they're light I take them lightly. When it's time for provoking I want to do that and I want to create stories as well. My natural personality is closer to the lighter side. (laughs)
Zergs aren't doing well.
The maps aren't good for Zergs and since it's a best of one it's difficult to take the lead. Even so, I'll work hard to keep the Zerg pride alive.
Anything you want to add?
Yoon Chul hyung (Snow) helped me practise for six hours yesterday for which I'm very thankful. Snow is next up against hero and I'll do my best to help him out as well. I also want to thank Taek Yong hyung (Bisu) for helping me.
Also many people support me materially and emotionally for which I'm forever thankful.
Original interviews by Daily eSports journalist Lee Sora - firstname.lastname@example.org
Note: The short introductions are not translations, only the actual interviews.
SSL banners by: DiMiaN