Royal Never Give Up has won a 3-2 victory over DWG KIA in the MSI Grand Finals. The LPL champions took down their chief Rumble rivals in a series that came down to the wire to become the first team to get a second MSI title.
After the better part of a month, the Mid-Season Invitational reached its grand finals. 11 teams started the tournament and now it’s down to the two giants: China’s RNG and South Korea’s DWG KIA. Will RNG be the first team to get a repeat MSI title or will the world champions add a MSI title to their trophy case?
Game 1: RNG draws first blood
RNG came out of the gates swinging in game one, getting several early skirmishes. They had the gold and objective lead, securing infernal soul just 22 minutes in. Heo "ShowMaker" Su on Akali tried to turn it around with several impressive plays but his efforts were not enough. In a bloody fight for the elder drake, Chen "GALA" Wei’s Kai’sa secured it but DWG won the fight to prolong the game. It took a second elder drake to put Damwon down, but the LPL champions got first blood in the series.
Game 2: Damwon strikes back
The second game started very poorly for the LCK representatives as RNG got two kills early on in the bot lane and then took a 4-1 teamfight by the Herald just 9 minutes in. However, Damwon found a few picks to shorten the lead, then won a clutch teamfight by the dragon 18 minutes in to delay soul point and equalize the gold. The Korean team kept winning the mid-game fights and eventually aced RNG in their base to win the game.
Game 3: Never Give Up
It looked like DWG KIA finally found their groove in the third game, where they had an early kill and dragon lead. However, RNG struck back in a key fight near the third drake, killing four and taking the objective. GALA was on fire in the next clutch fight 24 minutes in as Damwon started the Baron 5v4 only to get corralled and aced. With that, the LPL champions were fully in control and ended the game with the second Baron.
Game 4: Ghost's vengeance
The teams traded blows early on in the fourth game, but it was Damwon getting the better of their opponents more often than not. RNG had drafted for good scaling, but the LCK champions snowballed their lead in the mid-game. It all came to a head 25 minutes in as Damwon chased their opponents, endured the engage and Jang "Ghost" Yong-jun ran amok in the RNG ranks, getting a Pentakill from a 3v5 fight. With the Baron buff, followed quickly by an ocean soul, DWG pushed hard to bring it to game five. Once more, it was time for Silver Scrapes.
Game 5: It's all over
RNG started strong in the decisive game, pressuring their opponents hard and getting a nearly 2.5K gold lead at ten minutes. Damwon tried to defend, but time and again, the LPL champions were getting the better of it. It was as dominant a game as any they've had at the tournament, even back to the group stage. RNG got a clean ace and an inhibitor just 20 minutes in. An early Baron nearly sealed the deal and while DWG delayed it a few more minutes, it was only a matter of time. RNG rallied, pushed and triumphed.
It was a vindication for RNG, who went through a hard time replacing legendary AD Carry Uzi. Yet in this tournament, they felt vindicated - their bot laner GALA has been one of the stars of the show and won deserved praise. They went head to head with the LCK and world champions and came out victorious. GG, RNG!
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