Brandon Sturak
Brandon Sturak
Brandon is a writer and editor for ESTNN with a passion for esports. He writes about League of Legends and esports generally, providing analysis and commentary on both. He is a founding member of Niagara University Esports, while being the previous mid laner and Head Coach for the NU Esports LoL team as well. Twitter @GhandiLoL

LoL: Worlds 2021 Group Stage - Day Two Recap

The words "MAKE/BREAK" appear on one half of the image with the other half showing a graphic of a man looking up at a huge circular LoL Esports logo with Elder Dragon and Baron Nashor on it.
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Day Two of Worlds 2021 Group Stage is upon us, and we’ve already seen some exciting matches.


After Day One, which saw EU and NA go 1-1 against each other and the LCK go 4-0, Day Two is already set to be an exciting one. Can T1 keep winning? Will Rogue do the unthinkable and take down DWG? Can Fnatic bounce back after Day One? With so much on the line already, everyone knew it was going to be good.

T1 vs Edward Gaming

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Main Event Group Stage broadcast, showing the champion drafts between Edward Gaming and T1 with a shot of T1 and EDG on the Worlds 2021 stage above.

It was a fairly LCK vs LPL start to a game, as by the eight-minute mark, we finally got our first fight around an objective. It went over to EDG after they were able to pounce onto T1, get First Blood and claim the Rift Herald. Funnily enough, the next major play was another team fight around the Rift Herald. Again, it went the way of EDG early as they picked up a kill, and despite T1 trying to punish the low HP bars, EDG came away ahead. Picking up two kills and a Rift Herald, EDG moved to 2k gold ahead.

T1 got onto the board on the bot side after EDG went in for a dive. Although they got the first kill, the fight went the way of EDG once again as they continued to move ahead. Now cresting 20 minutes, EDG moved to start the Baron, and while T1 got no kills from it, they were able to stop the Baron from happening. T1 then flipped the play and started attempting to take the buff for themselves. EDG tried to steal it but T1 were able to claim it. In the ensuing team fight, three members of T1 dropped, with EDG losing two.

A ray of hope, snuffed

While it wasn't ideal, it kept T1 alive in the game and crucially slowed down EDG. After that Baron buff expired, it was once again T1 that pulled the trigger on the second Baron engagement while EDG were busy on the Drake. It backfired though, and EDG were able to pick off Faker and claim the Baron as T1 retreated.

EDG pushed in the T1 base at the 33-minute mark, claiming the mid lane and bottom Inhibitors. They walked away unpunished as T1 looked flustered. With the top lane Inhibitor the only one left, EDG postured around in, pushing in all the lanes and trapping T1 inside their base. EDG forced the push into the Nexus towers but once again moved away with the Elder Drake spawn. Sadly for T1, they make the game-winning play for EDG, as Oner is caught out and killed. With this, EDG collapsed and knocked down the rest of the roster. EDG moved to 2-0, as the LCK ended its unbeaten run.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: T1 - EDG
  • Time: 36:40
  • Kills: 4-16
  • Turrets: 3-11
  • Gold: 59.5k - 71.8k
  • Dragons: 0-4
  • Barons: 1-1

Rogue vs DAMWON KIA

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Main Event Group Stage broadcast, showing the champion drafts between Rogue and DAMWON KIA with a shot of two DAMWON players and their coach on stage above.

Against the reigning world champs, it was not the start RGE needed as DK were able to pick up an important First Blood. It came from a solo kill in the top lane for Khan, as he dominated Odoamne in the 1v1. It’s pure domination across the map from DK. With just 13-minutes on the clock, they moved 5k ahead with nearly two of RGE’s outer towers down with full plate gold going over to DK.

DK, by the 17-minute mark, were raining down death onto the RGE bot lane, pushing into the Inhibitor turret. The one good bit of news for RGE was that Hans Sama was able to pick up a 1v1 kill against Ghost. It’s shortly followed by another kill onto Ghost for RGE, and while they’re still 8k behind, they were at least trying to stay in the game. After that, there was another kill without reply for RGE, while the lead dropped to just 6k. Sadly, it felt like DK were just stalling for Baron while RGE desperately tried to stay in the game.

So close, yet so far away

Searching for the miracle, RGE forced a play onto DK. They managed to get a massive early kill before Hans Sama was taken down, but still, RGE won the team fight and managed to take down four members of DK before moving to Baron. With the Soul Drake spawning, DK needed to secure it. And DK did claim the Ocean Soul, with RGE giving it up for their Baron as the gold lead fell to just 3k.

RGE forced a play mid lane, while they got an Inhibitor, they lost an Inhibitor in the bottom lane as a trade. With Elder Drake spawning, DK started it but stayed hidden. RGE fell for the bait in the bush and lost Inspired right off the bat. As a result, DK secured the Elder, and despite Hans Sama's best efforts, RGE just couldn’t do enough damage to win it the ensuing team fight. With a commanding team fight win, DK were able to push towards the base and secure the win. While it’s a loss, the near-comeback will give RGE members some confidence as they head into the next few days of Worlds.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: RGE - DK
  • Time: 36:56
  • Kills: 9-15
  • Turrets: 4-8
  • Gold: 61.4k - 69.2k
  • Dragons: 0-5
  • Barons: 1-0

PSG Talon vs Hanwha Life Esports

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Main Event Group Stage broadcast, showing the champion drafts between PSG.Talon and Hanwha Life Esports with a shot of PSG players and coaches above.

It’s an early first blood for HLE as a level two dive is dropped on the bot side, with River Teleporting into the bot lane to secure the kill. Then, shortly after, HLE snagged a double kill in the bot side, and despite PSG members reinforcing, they appeared too late as HLE moved 2k ahead. PSG finally got on the board at the 17-minute mark, in a game that really took its time to get going. Because of this, the lead for HLE dropped to 1k as we moved into the Baron spawning window with just four kills secured.

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After this point, it finally started to get interesting. Suddenly, a mad fight erupted in the bot lane, with TPs flying in left and right. PSG got the fight off to the right start, and they continued that lead. They picked up four kills for one, as the gold lead was all-but evened out at the 21-minute mark. Not too long after, HLE found a pick in the bot side but it was traded back two-for-two. With the fourth drake of the game spawning, both sides postured around the objective. PSG made a move for the Baron, getting a pick onto the HLE top laner before the engagement started. They left the Baron to secure the kills, picking up four kills before moving back to Baron.

PSG were able to make some big gold gains with Baron, though the HLE base remained intact. Then there was another major moment for PSG, getting more kills and moving the gold lead closer to 10k. In addition, the HLE base started to fall as PSG kept up the pressure. They managed to knock down two Inhibitors and claim the second Baron when it spawned on the 36-minute mark. The Baron is secured, and with four members of HLE down in the ensuing fight, it’s an easy end to the game for PSG. They got their first win of the group and brushed aside some early-game nerves to secure the victory.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: PSG - HLE
  • Time: 38:00
  • Kills: 21-9
  • Turrets: 10-3
  • Gold: 71.5k - 61.8k
  • Dragons: 3-3
  • Barons: 2-0

Fnatic vs Royal Never Give Up

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Main Event Group Stage broadcast, showing the champion drafts between Fnatic and Royal Never Give Up with a shot of Fnatic and RNG on the Worlds 2021 stage above.

Kicking off the fourth game of the day, FNC tried to pull off a cheeky invade, but it was spotted and RNG forced FNC away. A minute later, First Blood came out for RNG after a crazy jungle duel on the FNC side of the map. Bwipo lost so much in the level one, and once again FNC were behind in the early game. It’s more bad news for Fnatic, as Adam and Nisqy fall in the top side of the map as RNG took control of the game. It looked like another misplay in the bot side for FNC, with the bot lane caught out. While Hylissang fell, BEAN and Bwipo outplayed RNG and were able to pick up two kills, Crucially, FNC evened out the gold lead.

RNG instantly answered back with a Double Kill on the bot side, shutting down FNC’s bot lane. More kills for RNG as FNC continued to arrive at the plays too late and the game got bloody. It feels like a game that’s already in the late game, but by the 17-minute mark, and 17 kills on the board, it’s been a frantic game. FNC continued to make desperate plays to stay in the game, but RNG were busy dropping Rift Herald in the top lane to move to 3k ahead. RNG once again caught out FNC, this time as Baron spawned and it was not the play FNC needed. They lost two before the Baron and lost the buff before being Ace'd.

Shortly after, there was another frantic fight in the FNC jungle. Despite losing a member, early FNC somehow managed to equal the fight and go four-for-four in kills. RNG still maintained a 5k lead but wasn’t able to majorly punish FNC with the Baron. More fighting broke out in the mid lane, this time FNC were the ones who started early but ran out of steam as the fight went on. Losing the fight four-for-two, FNC lost more ground to RNG. It’s another Baron for RNG without any contest and it’s the game for RNG. FNC simply couldn't handle the Baron pressure from RNG and lost their entire base. FNC fought hard but didn't have enough to win it. They went 0-2 while RNG continued their unbeaten run.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: FNC - RNG
  • Time: 30:43
  • Kills: 13-34
  • Turrets: 3-10
  • Gold: 53.8k - 67.6k
  • Dragons: 1-2
  • Barons: 0-2

Cloud9 vs FunPlus Phoenix

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Main Event Group Stage broadcast, showing the champion drafts between Cloud9 and FunPlus Phoenix with a shot of FPX mid laner Doinb above.

Though this game was expected to be rather one-sided, it was an absolute nail-biter. In the early game, things looked great for C9, as they secured First Blood on Doinb with a three-man gank. However, their next visit there wasn't as fruitful. When Fudge went for the dive, he was Malzahar R'd under tower and killed for free. But that was okay. C9 ramped up the pressure, moving top at eight minutes to get two kills for one and a Herald. A minute later, they fought in the top lane again, getting two kills. While FPX dove and killed Zven, C9 made more of the play by using the Herald for the First Tower bonus top.

Although their early game plan was fantastic, C9's mid game was off. FPX started to get picks here and there after the 14-minute mark, along with a couple of towers and a Herald. C9 let off the gas and FPX welcomed the time to farm up and secure parts of the map for themselves. As a result, there weren't many kills for a while. Finally, the stalemate broke at 25 minutes, when FPX picked off Perkz in the side lane. Seeing an opportunity, FPX rushed Baron but C9 contested. In the team fight, C9 swept FPX aside, killing three and securing Baron afterward.

Unfortunately, C9 wasn't able to do lethal damage, or much damage at all, with Baron. So the game stalled out longer, with C9 losing all their momentum once again. Past the 30 minute-mark, Perkz was caught out multiple times in the side lanes and lost C9 so much pressure. After killing him for the fourth time, FPX easily took their own Baron. Then something bizarre happened. While FPX pushed the base as five with Baron, Perkz decided to solo base race them. Of course, FPX out-pushed him easily and ended the game before the Ryze could even get a hit off on the Nexus.

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Quick Stats:

  • Teams: C9-FPX
  • Time: 36:38
  • Kills: 13-13
  • Turrets: 9-8
  • Gold: 69.9k-67.9k
  • Dragons: 2-3
  • Barons: 1-1

DetonatioN FocusMe vs 100 Thieves

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Main Event Group Stage broadcast, showing the champion drafts between DetonatioN FocusMe and 100 Thieves with a shot of DFM and 100T on the Worlds stage above.

In a match that could start the miracle run for either of these teams, a win was necessary. And it was DFM who pulled the trigger first, sending three people mid to dive and kill Abbedagge for First Blood. However, 100T decided to put the spotlight on the bottom lane, diving and killed them at five minutes for a kill. A minute later, 100T went bot again to get another kill while Aria solo killed Abbedagge mid. But the bottom side was a disaster for DFM. As if two ganks weren't enough, 100T went twice more before 10 minutes to force Yutapon out of the game.

With the immense pressure, it was easy for the 100T bottom lane to secure the First Tower bonus at nine minutes. DFM, to their credit, did try to trade on the opposite side of the map. Unfortunately for them, it wasn't enough. 100T always managed to stay one step ahead in the objective trades and carved out a nice lead for themselves moving into the mid game. They didn't force the issue too hard though, so there was a 10-minute lull with little action.

But it started back up again at 29 minutes. Here, 100T found a massive team fight, where they eventually killed four from DFM while losing none of their own. This gave them the opportunity to take not only the top Inhibitor but also the Baron. Moving towards the 30-minute mark, DFM found a great pick onto Closer with the Elder Dragon alive. This boded well, but the team fight broke out and it was apparent how far ahead 100T were. They obliterated all five DFM members in the 4v5 and, without anyone to stop them, rushed the base to smash DFM's Nexus too.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: DFM-100T
  • Time: 33:01
  • Kills: 7-19
  • Turrets: 2-9
  • Gold: 51.4k-63.5k
  • Dragons: 0-4
  • Barons: 0-1

MAD Lions vs Gen.G

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Main Event Group Stage broadcast, showing the champion drafts between MAD Lions and Gen.G with a shot of MAD mid laner Humanoid above.

Group D was expected to be very close and competitive, and this match showed everyone why. Action exploded onto the Rift at three minutes, when fighting happened in every part of the map. A 2v2 all-in in the bottom lane resulted in a one-for-one kill trade, while Humanoid secured a solo kill onto Bdd who tanked one too many tower shots and Elyoya ganked Rascal top to kill him. Despite this early explosiveness, the early game only had a few objective trades to offer.

Now into the mid game, skirmishes started to break out regularly. The first two went the way of GEN, with them getting multiple kills with rather few casualties. But past 20 minutes, it was all MAD, as they won two dominant team fights to pick up nine kills in total. They also tied up the dragon score, which GEN managed to pull ahead in in the early game. The first Baron was secured at 32 minutes when GEN rushed it, but MAD killed two retreating GEN members so it didn't result in much.

With GEN on Soul point, the next few fights inevitably occurred at the pit. They were all very close, but MAD managed to even steal one away with a Carzzy Lucian ultimate to keep it away from GEN. Kills dropped left and right in these team fights but neither team could find the decisive strike. Eventually, on MAD's second Baron at 44 minutes, the game looked at its climax. GEN bided their time but weren't able to protect their Inhibitors, meaning the triple-Inhibitor flood of minions rushed their base. On the back of a great Elyoya engage, MAD cut down all five GEN champions to pull out a very late game victory.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: MAD-GEN
  • Time: 46:53
  • Kills: 30-19
  • Turrets: 11-5
  • Gold: 90.4k-80.7k
  • Dragons: 4-3
  • Barons: 2-1

Team Liquid vs LNG Esports

A screenshot from the 2021 World Championship Main Event Group Stage broadcast, showing the champion drafts between Team Liquid vs LNG Esports with a shot of TL and LNG on the Worlds 2021 stage above.

Group D has been incredibly close so far, so a win for either team here was much-needed. Despite that, the early game was very quiet overall, even though champions like Talon, LbLanc and Twisted Fate were in the game. All that happened was LNG slew an Infernal Dragon, while TL claimed Rift Herald. The First Blood finally came out at 13 minutes when LNG invaded TL's jungle and caught out Santorin, who couldn't hop away in time. Two minutes later, LNG picked up another "first" with the First Tower bonus going there way in the bot lane.

Rather quickly, LNG seemed to be choking TL out of the game. There was virtually no playmaking from the Talon, Twisted Fate or Leona, and it was LNG posturing aggressively every time. At 15 minutes, they forced a team fight in the bottom lane, where they got two easy kills. Two minutes later, they collapsed to slay Alphari top, then snagged another kill in the mid lane. It went fron bad to worse for TL as Icon assassinated Tactical's Ezreal near his tower and LNG stacked dragons.

Even knowing the game was slipping away, TL could barely mount any offensive. So it continued to slip away, with LNG taking an easy road to Soul point. When the Mountain Soul Dragon spawned, Tarzan did overextend and was killed for it, TL's first kill of the game. TL got the dragon but LNG still cleaned up the first to take four kills, along with the mid Inhibitor and even a Nexus Tower. Having all the room they needed, LNG went to Baron, forcing TL to respond. When they did, LNG pounced and killed them all. With a clean Ace, LNG simply strolled into the TL and finished what they started, and smashed TL's Nexus to wrap up the day.

Quick Stats:

  • Teams: TL-LNG
  • Time: 29:00
  • Kills: 1-15
  • Turrets: 2-9
  • Gold: 42.9k-54.3k
  • Dragons: 1-3
  • Barons: 0-0

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