The first semifinalist has been locked in for the 2022 League of Legends World Championship. LPL champion JD Gaming convincingly defeated LEC champion Rogue in the first quarterfinal of the Worlds 2022 Knockout Stage, brushing them off with a 3-0 sweep. JD Gaming advances to the semifinal, awaiting the winner of the quarterfinal between T1 and Royal Never Give Up. Rogue has been eliminated from Worlds 2022.

Early domination from JDG

JD Gaming hit the ground running in the series. Jungler Seo “Kanavi” Jin-hyeok invaded Rogue’s jungler and, with the help of his laners, prevented Rogue from doing the same to JDG. Using this advantage, Kanavi managed to keep his lanes safe with pin-point accurate pathing. Though Rogue did find First Blood in the top lane, JDG instantly traded back the kill. Rogue’s composition was created to acquire an early lead and to snowball that lead but, by 10 minutes, they had already fallen behind. As JDG ran around the Rift in full control and took Rift Heralds, Rogue stacked two drakes and started to play more aggressively. It actually netted them some momentum through outstanding play from bot laner Markos “Comp” Stomkopoulos. It was a small bump on JDG’s road to victory. The LPL champion remained in calm control and confidently won the first game.

The second game followed the same recipe. Although Rogue had banned Kanavi’s Graves and top laner Andrei “Odoamne” Pascu got his hands on signature champion Maokai, JDG seized control early in the game again. This time, Rogue’s bot lane had to suffer the wrath of the LPL early. Kanavi once again outpaced Kim “Malrang” Geun-seong and assisted in a flawless gank, killing Rogue’s bot lane duo at level 7. This time, Rogue struggled to hit back at JDG. The mid lane advantage Emil “Larssen’ Larsson had managed to create was no match for the power JDG hit Rogue with from the four other roles. JDG cruised to series point.

Next up for JDG is a semifinal against either T1 or RNG. (Source Colin Young-Wolff for Riot Games)

Changing tactics to no avail

JD Gaming forced Rogue to change up its tactics in the third game as the Europeans fought for their Worlds 2022 lives. Whereas Rogue’s bot lane had gone for the Lucian/Nami combination in the first two games, it was JDG who drafted the duo in game 3. Rogue went for their LEC-winning Kalista/Soraka combination. They spiced up the mid lane too, as Larssen picked LeBlanc. Rogue was more competitive. Comp and Adrian “Trymbi” Trybus found a 2v2 double kill against JDG, but lost out in the top lane. That small edge was enough for Bai “369” Jiahao and Kanavi to wiggle open the door to success further, though. Slowly but surely, JDG climbed back into the driver’s seat they had occupied in the first two games as well. 369 and Kanavi split Rogue up and, with perfect coordination from their teammates, closed the series.

The next series on the Worlds 2022 schedule, T1 versus Royal Never Give Up quarterfinal, will be played on Friday, Oct. 21, at 11 PM CEST. You can find the full schedule here. All series are streamed on the official LoL Esports site.