Only one best-of-five stands between T1 and the 2022 League of Legends World Championship trophy. After the team defeated LPL champion JD Gaming, T1 gave a press conference to the international media. The questions and answers have been sorted by whom the question was asked to.
Note: During the press conference, on-site translators only translated answers to English if the question was asked in English. Questions asked by Korean-speaking media and Chinese-speaking media could therefore not be included in this article.
Q: What are your thoughts on the Malphite pick from 369 [in game 3]? Do you think that this pick was delusional?
A: Not really. With the Yone blind pick, we were expecting Malphite could be one of their options. Looking at their composition and looking at our composition, Malphite was actually intimidating.
Q: The last two times Worlds was in North America, you won. Are you going to win this time?
A: Yeah, the past two Worlds that I won in North America, we worked so hard for it and we were able to accomplish that. As long as we put in that much effort, it will be able to happen.
Q: How are you feeling, in your tenth season, going back to the finals for the first time in five years?
A: I’m returning to the Worlds finals after such a long time… It’s the biggest motivation that I’m getting right now. I really, really want to win the final.
Q: What happened between game 3 and game 4 [against JD Gaming] that allowed you guys to dominate so hard in the last game?
A: In game 3 I got help from [Faker], and in game 4 Keria was able to find a great play early on. It was pretty easy after that.
Q: At the start of the Worlds 2022 Group Stage, you struggled. But you have massively improved since then. Today, you were a hard-carry for your team. How do you reflect on your growth at Worlds and what can we expect in the grand final?
A: I think I always had this potential and I think that, finally, my effort and hard work are paying off. I’m not really sure who’s gonna make it to the final, but it’s gonna be an LCK team anyway. We are used to playing against them throughout this year. As long as we can perform as we normally do in the [LCK], it will be alright.
Q: You will face former teammates in the Worlds 2022 grand final. It could be Doran and Chovy, or Deft [and Pyosik]. Do you feel emotional about that, and is it harder to play a close friend of yours?
A: When we were saying goodbye to each other, we said, “Let’s meet again at a bigger stage.” I’m so glad and proud that we actually made it happen. But emotions will not really affect me or my gameplay.
Q: Based on your performance today as a team, do you think there are any specific things you guys could improve on before heading into the finals on Nov. 5?
A: I think it’s mostly about if the players are having stage jitters in the first game. Compared to their Spring [Split] performance, it was pretty obvious they were a little bit nervous playing their first game. So, I will do my best to actually take care of that part. As long as they can perform as they do in practice, I’m pretty sure we’ll be able to win.
Q: At the start of the tournament, T1 maybe wasn’t the favorite to win Worlds 2022. But today, you are one best-of-five away from making it. How have you managed these couple of months to transform T1 into the beast of a team that they are today? And how do you feel about this achievement at your first world championship as a coach?
A: First off, the fact that we were able to make it to the Worlds final is mostly because our team, the players, were working so hard for this. They were able to step up so much in terms of their performance and their form. They all shared the same goal, which is why we were able to make this much of an accomplishment. Speaking of accomplishment, as the coach of T1, I want to say it’s more about our players working really hard. For some of the players, this is gonna be their first Worlds final. Some already have a lot of experience. I just want to make sure that we can end this whole journey on a good note.
JD Gaming also gave a press conference after the semifinal. You can find it here.