First we brought the TSL three of the best Protoss players in the world. The magnitude of the announcement set the bar high for the rest of the invites and when the Zerg invites were revealed a week later you guys went crazy. The bar was raised once again. We have five spots remaining, dedicated to the Terran players from Asia. We're bringing some of the biggest names in the business to represent their respective regions in the TSL.
Now that we've reached the end of our invites we feel that it is time to disclose our rationale behind the invite process. It should help you understand how we arrived at our list and appreciate why everyone was invited. This information will be posted as the first reply in this thread. Before we start announcing our Terran invites, you might like to enter our raffle by completing the quiz over at PokerStrategy.com - you never know, you might be the lucky person getting an all expenses paid trip to Korea!
If you haven't already, be sure to check out our previous Zerg and Protoss invite announcements.
Inside of Korea MVP has been regarded as the strongest player in the world for quite some time. For the majority of 2010 he held the #1 spot on the Korean ladder and was the first player in the world to reach 3000 points. Despite this, he was unable to win one of the first three seasons of the GSL. After GSL S3 ended, he played in a number of Korean tournaments like Gisado's all stars and the Gainward tournament. During the Gainward Tournament he competed in a field of over 700 players and only lost one game in the whole thing. He ploughed through players like MarineKing, Nada and TheStC and won the final convincingly 4-0. To follow on from this impressive performance, he went on to take the January GSL title where he once again beat a fearsome line up of players like MarineKing, NesTea, Tester and Fruitdealer. He is the most recent GSL champion and the most feared player in the world - a perfect fit for the TSL.
Loner is the most accomplished Chinese player in Starcraft 2 so far. He quickly made his way to Korea to compete in the GSL for Season 2 and teamed up with Prime to train in Korea. His GSL performance earned him a place in Code A without having to play any tie-breakers. Outside of the GSL, he was selected as one of the Chinese representatives to Blizzcon. Loner went through the Blizzcon tournament undefeated against everyone but Genius - the eventual winner. This included 2-0 victories over Huk and Sen. Despite not being able to qualify for Code S last season, he was able to retain Code A by making the Ro16 of the Code A tournament. He will be representing all of China this season and will be the first ever Chinese player in the TSL.
With back to back GSL semifinal appearances, and two convincing wins over IdrA in the GSL, Jinro is possibly the best non-Korean player in the world. Despite flying under the radar for most of 2010, Jinro broke out in force after winning MLG Dallas and dazzling us all with his amazing play - including some stand out games against players like Socke. Upon his return from MLG, Jinro got to work on the Korean scene and blew us all away by reaching the semifinals of Season 3 where he lost to eventual winner MC. In the January season of the GSL, Jinro bounced back from his semifinal defeat to MC and resoundingly beat him with a ground breaking mech style and powered his way to the GSL semifinals for the second time. The TSL just wouldn't be the TSL without the Gorilla Terran tearing his way through the competition.
If you were to ever write a book about consistency in progaming, Nada would be chapters one, five and seventeen. Nada has been a progamer since 2001 and in 2002 he won his first title. His blazing handspeed (400 apm) allowed him to reinvent Terran strategy as he won title after title after title. By the time he switched to SC2 he had won 3 MSLs and 3 OSLs all across different time periods and various personal struggles (he's also won multiple silvers and won many invite tournaments as well). Even today he remains the most decorated Starcraft 1 Progamer and one of the true legends of the game. In Starcraft 2 Nada has not yet won a GSL title, but he is still a revered Progamer in Code S and finished Top 8 last season of the GSL.
There is no figure in esports that has had a greater impact on the development and acceptance of esports in mainstream culture than Boxer. Throughout his incredibly successful Starcraft 1 career, Boxer has become an icon of the industry and the first real esports superstar. He got to this position through winning a ridiculous number of tournaments prior to 2001 at a time when Terran was considered a weak race. His revolutionary control created many timeless moments that will be rewatched again and again by fans. You can read more about his Starcraft 1 career in his biography; 'Crazy as me'. In Starcraft 2 Boxer's starpower was enough to break the GOM servers when he first played. But he's not all looks and personality, he's a force in the game as well. He secured Code S during the first three seasons of the GSL and was able to retain Code S in January by finishing Top 16. It is a genuine privilege to have The Emperor participate in the TSL and we're all eagerly anticipating the amazing games he's going to show us during the tournament.
The PokerStrategy.com TSL3 is going to contain the best players in the world and offer you a unique opportunity to see the best from around the world do battle. You'll see your favorites like White-Ra and TLO go up against the heavy hitters from Korea like MC, NesTea, MVP - or even Boxer. No where else can you see such a diverse and skilled lineup. There is still one qualifier left, and this qualify is the last chance for people to qualify for the TSL. We will still have an announcement to make next week - tune in to the official TeamLiquid cast where we will announce the Map Pool as well as the Casters for the TSL.
Stay tuned for our recap of the seventh TSL Qualifier.
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Discuss with other fans in the TSL3 Forum.