Protoss Players Dominate the Afreeca Starleague Season 5
Blizzard has kept his promise and brought StarCraft back into the spotlight with the Remastered edition. South Koreans have always dominated this game and it was only natural for them to be the first to embrace the new release. Many StarCraft professionals kept playing the game even before the new milestone was set and were ready for the new challenge. Afreeca Starleague is by far the most important tournament dedicated to this game and the fifth season began on March 11, 2018.
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The first phase of the competition, commonly referred to as Round of 24 Group Stage concluded at the end of March and 16 players advanced. It featured a balanced lineup of 11 Protoss, 9 Zergs and 8 Terran players, but only one Terran made it through. Mind survived the Round of 16 Group Stage and was joined by Flash as reigning champion, only to be eliminated in the Elimination Bracket. Both of them bowed out of the competitions at the end of thrilling series that they lost 3:2 against Snow, respectively hero.
The Round of 24 as well as the Round of 16 Group Stage were single elimination dual tournaments, with the games scheduled for Tuesday and Sunday. All Afreeca TV StarCraft League were broadcasted on an English stream from the Freecup Studio. In the elimination bracket, players competed in a best-of-five series and so far only the Terran players were involved in a decisive match. Youngho Lee aka Flash was the reigning champion and the main favorite to win the tournament at bookmakers offering eSports.
All-Protoss Final in Afreeca Starleague Season 5
The official maps chosen for this edition of Afreeca TV StarCraft League were criticized by Terran players for putting them at a disadvantage. Apparently, the organizers were trying to level the playing field after Flash’s dominant performance in the previous edition. The unintended consequence was the fact that the lineup of Terran players was decimated and only two made it to the elimination rounds. At the same time, the maps decidedly favored Zerg players, yet the final will be an all-Protoss affair.
Rain is the first player to have secured a place in the final, after defeating hero 3:1 in the semifinals. Just like Flash, he played directly in the round of 16 in Season 5 and lost a single match in each stage of the competition. In the wake of his victory on Sunday, Rain is now waiting for the other all-Protoss semifinal to decide the winner on May 10. Snow and Mini will lock horns on Thursday and the former is narrow favorite to win the series after his victory over Flash. Mini however is the only player who hasn’t lost a single match at the Afreeca Starleague Season 5.
Protoss players have dominated the tournament with an iron fist and are on the verge of reclaiming the Afreeca Starleague trophy. A notable absentee from this competition was Bisu who is fulfilling his mandatory military service. His place was awarded to another player at the end of a wildcard match. Viewership has increased from year-to-year and the remastered version of StarCraft breathed new life into Blizzard’s flagship game.