GSL Round of 16, Group D Battle Report
Less than 12 hours after we wrapped up the opening group of the round of 16, we have yet another hitting our screens. Whilst on paper yesterday's group was the weakest on paper, today's is the strongest, a ludicrous group for this stage of the tournament. If you missed last night's opening group with Maru and co, read all about it here.
Today's group of death features the recent IEM champion soO, 2017 world champion Rogue and two of the four horsemen, TY and GuMiho. TvZ and mirror matches in abundance today, but it's scary to think two of these names will not advance further than the round of 16.
We'll start with the zerg players and the current man of the moment, soO. Having finally broken his hoodoo of second place finishes, the Chivo man won IEM Katowice last week, beating Zest, Serral, herO and Stats on his path to victory. He surely is the form player of the group but time will tell if that will even matter in a group as stacked as this. He faces off against Rogue in the second match of the day, with the Jin Air player looking to make the round of eight for the third time in a row. Rogue was eliminated in the IEM groups, finishing fifth in an all terran and zerg group. He will have to bring a different type of fight today in order to advance.
This is usually where I make a prediction about a heavy favourite but in reality this group is near impossible to call. Terrans in general had a rough tournament at IEM, with TY the only player to make it to the round of 12 before being brutally cut down by Solar. Whilst that may not sound impressive TY is still a very formidable player and could very possibly take the group. Our last player is the one and only GuMiho. Whilst TY is considered a strong TvT player, he will have his work cut out for him against GuMiho. The PSISTORM player has an unorthadox style, regularly using mech in both TvZ and TvT. This is a group where anyone can beat anyone and I for one, think this is one you cannot afford to not know about.
TY vs GuMiho - TvT
As we saw yesterday TvT can either lean towards a passive or aggressive option and this game leaned towards the passive start. Both players went for 1-1-1 openings, with GuMiho’s earlier command centre providing a slight economic advantage. A quiet first five minutes moved into a push out by TY, with double Viking production giving TY a massive air advantage. A technical attack followed, with TY utilizing his air dominance to eventually win the fight, pushing into GuMiho’s base to see a quick 1-0 taken.
The second game started much as the first, with the only action in the first five minutes being a building scv assassination by GuMiho, delaying TY’s command centre by a slight amount. TY looked to push once again on the back of a third base, but a counter by GuMiho denied TY’s third. A trade ensued at GuMiho’s natural, with both players heading into the mid game fairly even. Both players moved into marine – tank, with neither player opting for the mech route. GuMiho looked to spread out his attack, hitting the third while dropping the main. Both attacks failed heavily, with TY opening up a 40 supply lead and taking a relatively easy 2-0.
TY 2-0 GuMiho
Rogue vs SoO - ZvZ
Our opening match saw the dance of the initial overlords, before Rogue held down the z key and went for a full NA zergling flood. The wall was made by soO, but some slack execution on making a further wall saw Rogue’s zerglings spill in, giving Rogue a very quick 1-0.
As the overlords kissed in front of Amon, Year Zero was our second battleground in this zvz. Identical openings saw hatch first by both players, with the opening difference being a very early lair by soO, coupled with no zergling speed. A great scout by Rogue saw the early lair spotted, as both players moved into roaches, +1, and roach speed. Both players postured, Rogue holding a slight drone lead as both players moved into later tech, Rogue into lurkers, soO into hive and vipers. We were on the way into a mega late game zvz, with only a small handful of units killed by the 10 minute mark. A wall of spore crawlers and lurkers by Rogue looked to hold the line, whilst using nydus worms to push into soO. The worms went soO’s fourth and main and in a couple of brilliant moves, Rogue had out positioned soO, taking great fights with lurkers to send the IEM champion into the losers match.
Rogue 2-0 soO
TY vs Rogue - TvZ
Our opening game saw standard openings from both players, with TY going into cloaked banshee on the back of a small hellion pressure that killed five drones. With another five drones was killed by the banshee, TY went into an off meta banshee speed upgrade. Combining that with a push with two tanks, marines and hellions, Rogue was caught off guard, eventually losing his third base to give TY a huge advantage. Battle mech was to be the follow up play by TY, as the Splyce player looking to build up before heading into another push. A hydra ling bane composition pushed out but being 70 supply and two bases down, the attack was crushed giving TY a clean 1-0 lead.
Game two saw an ultra economic opening by TY, with a command centre first opening, into a third command centre after only one reaper. Unmeasurable greed by TY, but Rogue did not respond, with the game developing into a macro affair. TY looked to push, cancelling an expand by Rogue. TY continued to push but Rogue held, using only zerglings and banelings to hold off the onslaught by TY. Adding mines and liberators in the mix, Rogue killed over 20 SCV’s with banelings on the other side of the map. With TY 30 workers behind, TY pushed, getting great engages against the zergling baneling composition and advancing out of the group of death without dropping a map.
TY 2-0 Rogue
TY qualifies to the quarter finals.
SoO vs GuMiho - ZvT
Opening up into our losers match on New Repupnancy, GuMiho would be taking to the skies with a battlecruiser opening. In a variation to Maru’s build yesterday, yamato was researched and a second and third battlecruiser were made. Going into mech afterwards, GuMiho was bringing out his trademark style. SoO went into corruptors to try and fend off the battlecruisers but the damage was done, over 10 drones dying to a combination of hellions and battlecruisers. SoO, in a smart counter went into a big roach ravenger corruptor attack. Despite a few tanks, SoO rolled through, killing over 40 scv’s to place him in a huge lead. SoO went for another follow up push but a smart counter by GuMiho killed over 20 drones. Both players had massive holes in their economy and the comeback was on, all be it for only a short time. Sensing a lack of anti air, soO hid the upcoming mutalisks from GuMiho, catching him out and taking the first map.
Our second map saw a rare visit to Automaton, with GuMiho opting for a command centre first. With both players settling into the map, a hellbat marauder attack would be the attack of choice for GuMiho. As three marauder pushed in, hellions did their best impression of a drive by, roasting 10 drones. SoO would then pressure with roaches, whilst transitioning into hive and hydralisks on his side of the map. Whilst it seemed both players would be content to sit back, GuMiho took the iniative, looking to abuse the area surrounding the gold minerals. Taking a great position on around the gold base, a brilliant blinding cloud and double pronged attack saw soO clean up the push. A classic tvz slug fest ensused from here, with soO pushing, each player exchanging a base before the armies were reset on both sides. SoO’s superior economy would show from here though and with over double the income he was easily able to remax, leaving GuMiho over 50 supply down by the 15th minute mark. It was then a matter of time, SoO crushing through the smaller Terran army to move onto a rematch with Rogue.
SoO 2-0 GuMiho
SoO vs Rogue - ZvZ
Our rematch saw these two face off once again, with Rogue opting for a greedy quick third hatch, looking to take an advantage. SoO would head into a quick lair and in a repeat of the first game, Rogue mashed the z button, looking to find a gap in the wall. This time soO held on though, amassing a strong roach count. Rogue had to bye time and with some excellent zergling movement, kept the roaches of soO at bay long enough to amas a formidable roach count of his own. Both players moved into mass roach from here with neither player going above 50 drones. Both players looked to posture, but soO hit the trigger and pushed on +2 attack. In a crazy move, soO moved up a ramp into a massive concave by Rogue. In a very ambitious play soO lost the fight decisiviely, with Rogue pushing back across the map to take the initial map.
With soO 1-0 down, his life was on the line here on Port Alexsander. A hatch first opening by both saw Rogue go into an immediate evolution chamber and +1 armour. Looking for a window to exploit his advantage, Rogue pumped out zerglings, hoping to deal a decisive blow to soO. The attack saw three queens and a bunch of zerglings die but soO held, sitting a base up on his opponent. Instead of pressing the economic advantage, soO went into full unit production, making a massive attack consisting of roaches and zergling, he hit Rogue hard but Rogue held, chasing the army back and seeing the IEM champion exit the GSL in the round of 16.
soO 0-2 Rogue
Rogue qualifies for the quarter finals.
Qualified Players: TY, Rogue
Series of the Day: TY vs Rogue Qualification Match
Game of the Day: TY vs Rofue Qualification Match Game Two
GSL Code S continues on the 20th of March, 18:30 KST with Classic, Trap, herO and INnoVation.
All pictures courtesy of AfreecaTV.