G2 Yike was one of the most outstanding players of 2023, so the 2023 LEC Rookie of the Year award is well deserved!
The 2023 LEC season is nearing it’s end with only 4 teams remaining in the run for the LEC Season Finals title. These 4 teams, namely G2 Esports, Fnatic, MAD Lions and Team BDS will also be the ones to represent the EMEA region in the 2023 World Championship – with either BDS or Fnatic joining MAD and G2 Esports in the Main Event of Worlds, while the other will have to face LCS’s Golden Guardians before they get a shot at the Worlds Play-Ins.
But there’s still some League of Legends to be had in the LEC and with the end of the season, it’s time to give out some prestigious awards. After each of the LEC splits, the All-Pro teams were voted for by experts and fans alike, with the entirety of G2 Esports making up the No.1 All-Pro team after Summer. But it’s tradition in the LEC to also pick a Rookie of the Split, as well as the Coaching Staff of the Split – but due to the new format, the organizers pushed these two awards to the end of the year.
While the best Coaching Staff still hasn’t been announced, the Rookie of the Year award has been handed out to the best new player of the split which is none other than G2’s jungler, Martin “Yike” Sundelin!
G2 Yike – the best rookie of 2023
The 22-year-old Yike joined G2 Esports at the end of last year to everyone’s surprise. While the young jungler played for teams such as the Morning Stars in the PG Nationals, Team Oplon and LDLC OL in the LFL, he wasn’t a household name in the ERL’s. However, after winning the LFL Division 2 2021 Playoffs with Oplon, he got a chance to prove himself with LDLC, and the Swede delivered: in 2022, Yike and his teammates – for example SK Gaming players Thomas “Exakick” Foucou and Mads “Doss” Schwartz – won both the Spring and Summer LFL Playoffs, while making it into the Finals of the 2022 EMEA Masters Spring, and to the top 4 of the Summer EMEA Masters.
Even though Yike didn’t win an international event while playing in the so-called second division of EMEA League of Legends, he did draw the attention of many LEC squads, including G2 Esports, where the midlaner, Rasmus “Caps” Borregaard Winther vouched for him (at least according to this year’s Topfather video by G2).
Even though some fans were worried that Yike won’t live up to the team and won’t be able to fill the void that Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski left behind, G2’s new jungler was everything they hoped for. He could play virtually anything at a high level, even showcasing extreme prowess with unique picks like Bel’Veth. Yike quickly rose to become one of the best junglers of the LEC, also winning his first ever LEC split.
Yike was by far the top pick for Rookie of the Year, and the award feels well deserved. But now, he has a bigger fish to fry: he and G2 needs to win the 2023 LEC Season Finals, then go on to become World Champions – can the Rookie of the Year help his teammates realize their dreams?