GSL Round of 32, Group C Battle Report
Less than 24 hours after we saw Classic and Trap advance out of group b, we are right back into the meat of it with group c of the round of 32. If you didn’t manage to catch up on what happened last night, read the group b battle report here.
Whilst last night featured no Terran players, today features no Zerg players.
In a debatable group of death, group c features Stats, Cure, GuMiho and the returning BossToss, MC.
This one is not one to be uninformed about!
In a similar storyline to yesterday, the favourite to advance out of the group is the Blizzcon finalist, Stats. Still representing Splyce, the Shield of Aiur will be looking for no hiccups here as he aims to start this season as dominant as he finished the last. His first matchup is a PvP against a man who needs no introduction, ROOT.MC.
In his first GSL since late 2016, the BossToss is back, representing ROOT Gaming and looking to add to his many collection of titles. Although he is not the favourite to advance, time will tell if MC can pull off an upset in this tough group.
PSISTORM Gaming’s GuMiho is most likely the favourite to advance out in second, an encouraging pre season has seen him knock off Stats, Dear and Patience in qualifiers. It will be interesting to see if GuMiho brings out any mech games against Protoss, considering it’s relative strength at the moment.
Cure rounds out the group, with the Jin Air Green Wings player to give it to all to make it out of the round of 32, a feat he could not accomplish last year, finishing third in his group in all three seasons.
Stats vs MC - PvP
Our first match of the night saw Blizzcon finalist Stats take on returning legend MC. In a quick insiders take before the match, Artosis said that he had talked to MC backstage and that the BossToss had said he thought Stats was too strong but he could beat the Terran players. Our first map took us to Automaton, with MC opening up with 4 adepts into a nexus. Some great micro saw two stalkers of Stats fall to only two adepts of MC. With an earlier forge coming up from MC, he powered towards a quick +2 push, leaving Stats to forfeit his third base. Whilst a counter attack from Stats killed MC's natural, MC pushed in with a bigger army and took the first match.
Port Alexsander saw the second match, with MC surprisingly now on match point. Whilst Stats opened up with a stargate. MC opened up again with another early forge and both players powered up into immortal archon chargelot tech. Whilst Stats took a third, MC pushed out again on two bases, looking to cause considerable damage. A fight at Stats’ third went fairly evenly, but MC moved up the ramp into the natural and forced Stats to take a fight away from his shield batteries. The end result was an MC series win, seeing the first major upset in the GSL this season.
Stats 0-2 MC
Cure vs GuMiho - TvT
The first TvT of this season saw GuMiho face off against Cure in the other opening match. A cyclone rush by GuMiho saw him pressure Cure in the early stages, as we saw both players going into alternative styles. GuMiho, into a quick third base and mech and Cure into bio-tank play. With GuMiho assuming the defensive, it was up to Cure to try and find a hole in the defence of the PSISTORM Gaming player. In the next few minutes, Cure managed to snipe a fourth base but could not find any considerable damage. GuMiho pushed out with his mech armada at 14:30, and Cure countered to force a basetrade. Despite Cure still having a mining base, GuMiho had strangled the production of Cure, forcing the Jin Air player to break out of the contain. He managed it, but could not find a favourable engage against the rest of GuMiho’s army, and typed out gg to concede the first game.
The second game saw normality resume with a reaper expand into 1-1-1 from both sides. An aggressive hellion and liberator assault by Cure found eight SCV’s to put Cure in the driving seat. Both players powered ahead, with Cure slightly ahead in economy compared to GuMiho. A quick snipe of the fourth by GuMiho and threatened to turn the tables, but a big push by Cure parked itself outside GuMiho’s fourth. The fight went Cure’s way and with a superior tank count he pushed into GuMiho until the series was tied up at 1-1.
The third game saw fairly passive openings from both players. A quick third by GuMiho looked to have him assume the role of defender but a brilliant push caught Cure, with ravens disabling his tanks and GuMiho's army steamrolling through Cure’s natural. Both players traded 18 SCV’s, but it was GuMiho in the better economic situation. He then hit a follow up push to take the series and advance on to take on MC in the winners match.
Cure 1-2 GuMiho
MC vs GuMiho - PvT
The winners match between an unexpected MC and GuMiho started off with a proxy barracks, as we saw GuMiho attempt to unsettle MC in game one. After the reaper killed two probes, GuMiho wasn’t done, going into a hellion marauder timing with concussive shells. Whilst the attack looked scary, MC defended with flying colours. His next test was to be a hellion drop, followed by a cloaked banshee. The hellions managed to sneak into the main mineral line, killing 12 probes and putting GuMiho into the driving seat. Whilst the cloaked banshee was defended, MC was clearly on the back foot and lost another seven probes, with the BossToss unable to claim a third. A tank, banshee and marine push from GuMiho was deadly however, as MC fell in game one.
Game two saw another proxy barracks from GuMiho, with the reaper not getting any kills on this occaision. An aggressive MC looked to push with an early prism and four gates, but his attack fell flat on it’s face, as marines, backed up by a tank and cyclone put GuMiho into another great position. Although his push out was delayed by some great MC movement, it came eventually. MC desperately tried to defend, but once again lacked the tools, which left GuMiho to pick up the win and move on to the round of 16.
MC 0-2 GuMiho
Cure vs Stats - TvP
So sure was I that Stats was to advance in first, I actually forgot that he was in this first elimination match. However here he was, to face off against Jin Air Green Wing’s Cure. The opening saw the proxy starport hellion strategy used once again. In an interesting tactic, Cure flew the empty medivac into the main base trying to pull Stats away into the main, while trying to barge through the front door with hellions. While the initial attack was unsuccessful, a reaper grenade ensured try number two would kill six probes. Both players macroed after this, with colossi being the tech of choice for Stats. This would all eventuate in a fight by Stats’ fourth base but with Stats three upgrades ahead, the fight went heavily in Stats’ favour and he went 1-0 up.
Map two saw the same openings as before, minus the proxy starport. Cure stuck with the 1-1-1 throughout this series, this time hoping to utilise a raven to disable the colossi. The push came but a clutch feedback stopped it dead in its tracks. Cure then tried to tear Stats apart with a double pronged attack into the main and third, but the shield of aiur held firm with some solid defence. The two then traded fourth bases before they clashed, leaving both sides in trouble economically. If Cure or Stats could win the fight decisively, then the game would likely follow it. With blanket EMP’s and Colossi that fell quickly, Cure was the victor, sending it to a decider to possibly knock the group favourite out of the GSL.
These two players once again gave us three gate blink and 1-1-1 openings, sticking to the story of the series and not mixing up their openers. Stats however threw a curveball five minutes in, advancing into high templar technology over colossi. With storm done, a similarly timed push by Cure looked to be held much easier with templar over colossi, with the templar only needing to feedback the raven to be able to punish the Terran with storm. The feedback went off, but it was just too late, as the raven disabled two templar, giving the bio free reign over the protoss army and sending Stats out of the GSL. Starcraft is often a game of split seconds and decision making and this was a clear example of both combining to dramatic effect. Cure went on to face MC in the deciders match.
Cure 2-1 Stats
MC vs Cure - PvT
MC had stated earlier that he felt confident about Terran and indeed all eyes were on this match to see if he could go above and beyond expectations and reach the round of 16. The opening map on Port Alexsander saw once again Cure go into a quick expansion, 1-1-1 with banshee cloak being the name of the game. A late observer saw MC have to use a warp prism to shuttle his probes, losing only 3 workers in a great show of micro. In a fairly clean cut game from here, MC seemed a little unclear in his focus, losing a warp prism and being 20 supply down when a big push came out from Cure. With two banshees pulling away parts of the army, MC had nothing to fight the main push and went down 1-0 to an impressive Cure.
Kings Cove saw game two, with once again standard openings paving th way into the stargate technology from MC. With some great distraction play, MC managed to keep Cure busy at home, while skipping a few corners to try and make his mid game very powerful. The phoenix could not keep Cure at home forever though and a one two punch saw Cure position at the front, while a widow mine drop killed nine probes in MC’s natural. The big hit saw MC on the ropes and down 20 supply and Cure pounced. Using the same tactic as before, Cure postured at the front whilst widow mines hit an exposed mineral line. The result, coupled with a viking in the main saw another 13 probes die. From here Cure simply out positioned MC with drops until gg was called. Cure heads to the round of 16, alongside GuMiho.
In his interview Cure said how he thought of himself as one of the most diligent pro players and how he didn’t let his mindset affect him against Stats.
“I lost to Stats many times before, that memory came back today but I controlled my mind and that was the reason I managed to beat him,” Cure said.
MC 0-2 Cure
Qualified to the round of 16: GuMiho, Cure
Series of the Day – Stats vs MC
Game of the Day – Cure vs Stats game two.
GSL Code S continues tomorrow at 1pm KST with s0s, PartinG, Solar and Bunny.
All stats courtesy of Aligulac and all pictures from AfreecaTV and GSL.