Top Esports win first-ever Mid-Season Cup

Provided by Riot Games

Top Esports beat FunPlus Phoenix 3-1 on Sunday to become the inaugural Mid-Season Cup champions and win their first-ever tournament.

The Mid-Season Cup featured the four top teams from China's LoL Pro League (Top Esports and FunPlus Phoenix were joined by JD Gaming and Invictus Gaming) and South Korea's LoL Champions Korea (T1, Gen.G, DragonX and Damwon Gaming). It was played online because of the coronavirus pandemic, with teams playing from both the LPL Arena in Shanghai and LoL Park in Seoul on artificially stabilized 30-40 ping between the two locations.

Reigning world champions FunPlus Phoenix beat current LPL champions JD Gaming in the first of yesterday's semifinals and Top Esports swept the last remaining South Korean team, Gen.G, in the second semifinal.

Game 1 of Sunday's finals featured the return of blind pick mode -- all of the MSC best-of-five series started with blind pick rather than the standard pick-ban sequence -- where mid laner Zhuo "Knight" Ding's Syndra once again stole the show in a Top Esports victory.

FunPlus Phoenix evened the score in Game 2 with a Kayle/Olaf/Galio composition around top laner Kim "Khan" Dong-ha, jungler Gao "Tian" Tian-Liang, and Kim "Doinb" Tae-sang. Game 3 had a bit of a slower start with Top Esports playing a steady and stifling early-to-mid game around the strength of top laner Bai "369" Jia-Hao's Renekton. Top Esports took control of the game early and never gave it up, snowballing and building on their gold lead. When it came to later teamfights, bot laner Yu "JackeyLove" Wen-Bo took the spotlight on Ezreal with a whopping 32.3K damage dealt. The Top Esports Kalista/Thresh bot lane dictated the pace of Game 4 early, overwhelming FunPlus Phoenix. This time it was rookie support Liang "yuyanjia" Jia-Yuan's time to shine for Top Esports with Thresh hook after Thresh hook to catch FunPlus players out of position.

The Mid-Season Cup semifinals and finals were part of a larger streaming event called the Mid-Season Streamathon to raise money for relief from the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic.