SKT T1 finally broke their losing streak and landed a convincing victory against Jin Air Greenwings. SKT came to Nexon Arena with the roster of Thal, Blank, Faker, Bang and Effort; playing with the known and proven while subbing out Wolf, who did not show top performance in previous matches.
In Game 1, SKT drafted the standard EU comp with Xayah and Rakan and took the game led by Faker’s Taliyah. In Game 2, SKT repeated their winning formula by drafting a marksman champion again, Ezreal. Faker once again took the MVP for the game by dominating the game on Galio, his old favourite from Worlds.
After the match, SPOTV interviewed Faker and Blank on SKT breaking their losing streak.
I guess the summer has just begun. Congratulations on the win, Faker.
Faker: Jin Air Greenwings is a bottom tier team, but so is SKT, so we really had to win this match. This victory feels like a beginning of a hope for this Summer Split.
You were in a 4 match losing streak, but SKT as a team never seemed to look disheartened or defeated. How did you prepare for today’s match?
Faker: We collectively had a lot of discussion about what issues we had to fix in order to break the losing streak. (As a team) we have so many issues, we cannot address all at once. First and foremost, we tried to uplift the mood of the team, then slowly re-build the skill and synergy within the team.
Faker: In previous games (in this Split), we would get caught alone and die unexpectedly. We didn’t make mistakes like that today, so I am happy with that.
We have also decided to invite the other key player to today’s victory. Congratulations on today’s win, Blank!
Blank: Thank you.
It has been a difficult Summer for all of you. However, today you’ve really shown the critics, making good decision after a good decision.
Blank: This is a meaningful victory for us; we broke our 4-match losing streak. That being said…Even if we had lost this match we would have continued to strive to land our next victory. I’m so relieved that we have won today.
In Game 2, you picked Skarner. It would not have been an easy decision to play Skarner. What was the conversation in the booth like when you locked in that champion?
Blank: No, the winrate on Skarner hasn’t been good. However, I don’t think the issue has been with the champion, but with the player.
The issue, in that case, has been resolved today!
Blank: We’re in the process of resolving it.
In Game 1, SKT surprised everyone by locking in Xayah.
Faker: We’ve been trying different things at our bot lane, playing non-marksman champions. However, the results had not been good. So we’d decided to play what we know.
Were SKT’s picks and bans improvised?
Faker: I know that other teams improvise their picks and bans; for our case and for this match, we did not. We had a lot of preparation for today’s pick and ban.
I ask about your picks and bans because Xayah on Smite is very unconventional. We don’t know a lot of professional players even practising on it.
Faker: We have 10 people on our team. I believe that this is something Afreeca Freecs first started…The 10 man roster means that we can do many short in-game scrims in a short amount of time. This is a meta where you have to experiment with different champions and different combination of champions, and constantly find new hidden gems.
Your next match is against KT Rolsters. KT Rolster really seemed strong in their last match against Afreeca Freecs, while you also seemed much more collected and stepped up at today’s match. How do you think the Telecom War will go?
Faker: Strong teams, even when they go through a slump, rise back eventually. I do believe that this will be the case for us too. Now we’ve won today, I have faith that we’ll do better in the coming matches too. KT also showed good performance at their last match. (The coming Telecom War) will be a fun match.
Blank, many fans would have been relieved to see your performance on Skarner today. Could you please say a word to the fans, to put their minds at ease?
Blank: We’re progressing, a step at a time. Please trust in us, and we will repay that trust with a better performance. Thank you.