The League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational (MSI 2022) saw an incredible championship final between LCK’s T1 and LPL’s Royal Never Give Up.

History was on the line for the two storied organizations as they both fought to claim their third MSI title. RNG also had the chance to win back-to-back titles after also winning last year’s MSI.

Both teams had dominated the earlier stages of the international tournament, coming out undefeated in the Group Stage, and taking first and second place respectively in the Rumble Stage. Their success also carried over to the Knockout Stage, where both teams secured sweeps in the semifinals.

While T1 was looking to raise the trophy on their home turf of Busan, South Korea, RNG was ready to defend their title and rise up as the back-to-back kings of MSI.

Royal Never Give Up leads the series with a game one victory

Royal Never Give up Xiaohu and Wei at MSI 2022 competing from Shanghai, China
Credit: Riot Games

T1 had a strong start to game one, but RNG gradually took over by controlling map objectives. The team secured the Ocean Soul and even stole Baron from the LCK representative at the 27-minute mark.

Securing a strong 6,000 gold lead by the late game, the team was ready to engage their opponents for the killing blow. Once Li “Xiaohu” Yuan-Hao’s Galio spotted a few T1 members in the river with a Scryer’s Bloom, he charged into the enemy troop with Shield of Durand.

With Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok’s Azir taunted by the Shield of Durand, Chen “GALA” Wei’s Tristana immediately Rocket Jumped in and landed a few hits on the mid laner, forcing him to pop his stasis. After waiting out the stasis and killing him, the RNG ADC utilized the reset of his Rocket Jump to assist Chen “Bin” Ze-Bin’s Gwen in chasing down the remaining T1 members.

Despite going into the fight with half a health bar, Shi “Ming” Sen-Ming’s Nautilus landed two Dredge Lines that pinned down opponents for the eventual ace. With no one left to defend the T1 base, the RNG quartet marched through the mid lane and took the first Nexus of the final.

RNG becomes MSI 2022 champions with the help of Xiaohu’s Lissandra

The series went all the way to game five, with Royal Never Give Up drafting a similar team composition from the first game. GALA and Bin were back on Tristana and Gwen respectively, but Xiaohu swapped tank Galio for mage Lissandra, adding to the team’s damage output without compromising crowd control.

At the 24-minute mark, Xiaohu was once again leading the charge to a game-winning fight. After closing the distance with Glacial Path, the Lissandra player stunned Lee “Gumayusi” Min-hyeong‘s Jhin with Frozen Tomb right under T1’s mid inhibitor tower. As the rest of Royal Never Give Up dogpiled on Gumayusi, GALA secured the kill with the burn from his red buff.

Working off the 4v5 advantage, Xiaohu was locking down enemies left and right with the combo of Glacial Path and Ring of Frost. Once enemies were rooted by Ring of Frost, the entire RNG crew showed no mercy.

After securing the ace in the base, Royal Never Give Up destroyed the Nexus to win the series and become champions of MSI 2022.

Royal Never Give Up holding up MSI 2022 trophy
Credit: Riot Games/Getty Images

With the championship win, Royal Never Give Up brought home US$75,000 and made history as the first team to win three MSI titles. They are also the second team to win back-to-back MSI titles, the first being T1.

After the triumphant victory, the RNG squad now sets their sights on the LPL summer season for a chance to attend the LoL World Championship later this year.

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