Code S: Ro32 Group B Recap
Results from Live Report Thread by opterown.
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The Soul Train Chugs Along
– ST_PartinG advances in first place.
As one of pro-gaming's brashest players, PartinG has always enjoyed talking a great deal, but has sometimes had trouble putting his money where his mouth is. Monday night's Code S group was another important step for PartinG as he seeks to reestablish himself as a true championship contender, coming on the back of a second place finish at WCS Asia and an all-kill of LG-IM in the GSTL.
Compared to those two feats, the Code S Ro32 was not quite as impressive. He did look very strong against a skillful TvP player in TSL_Polt – using a variation on his old "PartinG build" (fast double expansion PvT) and a marvelous cheese defense to take a 2 – 1 victory – but his win over Code S rookie MVP.finale came as a surprise to no one. Even so, it was an important step for PartinG, as it ensures his survival in Code S, the league where he must prove himself the most.
After the matches, PartinG was full of his usual bluster, and spoke of his desire to be in a Ro16 group of death containing DongRaeGu, MarineKing, and Rain: three opponents who had prevented him from reaching a championship in the past. Rain in particular was the subject of PartinG's attention and envy, with the Startale Protoss wondering if he could have won the OSL had he triumphed in their quarter-final meeting.
– TSL_Polt comes in second, Liquid`TaeJa and MVP.finale eliminated.
Going into the group, many thought the overall picture was clear cut: TaeJa would advance, finale would bomb, while Polt and PartinG would fight for the scraps. However, such predictions were tossed into disarray with the very first match of the night and the tournament.
In what is sure to be one of the most surprising upsets of the Code S season, the newcomer finale took down a lackluster TaeJa in two consecutive sets. While a hidden pylon 4-gate was the cause of defeat in one game, there was no question that TaeJa had been outplayed in the other, getting overpowered by finale in a straight macro game.
This led to a losers match between Polt and TaeJa which was a revenge match from the previous season, where the two had met in a different elimination match. That time, TaeJa had dismantled Polt, looking far superior in TvT. However, the rematch turned out to be a shocking reversal, with TaeJa looking strangely off while Polt bulldozed through. Even after taking a lead in game one, TaeJa slowly fell apart against Polt's superior engagement selection. When they started off on even footing in game two, TaeJa did not look like he stood a chance.
After PartinG ran a PvP clinic in the winners match, that left the unlikely darkhorse finale to go up against Polt for the final Code S seed of the group. Finale did not disappoint after his earlier victory over TaeJa, safely taking the first map with solid macro play on the Protoss favored Whirlwind.
Unfortunately for finale, there would be no second upset. Polt quickly evened the score on Antiga Shipyard, successfully defending against finale's blink-stalker all-in while back-dooring the empty main with hellions. Polt then completed the comeback on Cloud Kingdom, holding off a 6-gate all-in from finale with a combination of good scouting and impeccable game sense.
PartinG and Polt: Par for the course. These are players that are supposed to be in the Ro16, and their real challenges lie ahead.
finale: It was a great Code S debut for the MVP Protoss, and he surpassed everyone's expectations by finishing third in a very hard group. PartinG may have mangled him in PvP, but he looked solid in macro PvT games. Code S is only getting harder though, and at his current level, he's no lock to stay in. He'll have to keep improving if he wants to become a regular.
TaeJa: The worst single day performance from TaeJa in a very long time. Whether it was due to his worsening wrist pain or some other reason, TaeJa just looked totally off on the night. If he continues to play like this, then even the Code A Ro48 is a tough proposition for him.