This article is part of “Professional Help” an ongoing series of tips and tricks from pro players.

The 2021 League of Legends season kicked off last week with new changes to the ranked system. Unlike past seasons, the Challenger tier is now unlocked immediately on day one. Also, players will start their climb from a rank that’s closer to where they ended last season.

While the majority of Summoners are capable of climbing to Diamond through self-improvement and grinding, the ranks above become considerably more challenging.

To help you climb up the highest tiers of the ranked ladder, here are three pro tips from former professional player and now coach of Hong Kong Attitude, Wong “Chawy” Xing Lei:

1. Always remember that League of Legends is a team game

League of Legends is a team game. You have to help your teammates, and also ask them to help you.

Screenshot by Amanda Tan/ONE Esports

If you have good mechanics, you’re probably already at Diamond tier, but what makes a Challenger player different? They are consistently doing things for their team by being proactive in helping their teammates to get ahead. This increases your chances of winning by a lot! Even when you’re losing, don’t be afraid to ask for help.

2. Go for comfort picks

It’s important to have a pool of champions that you are confident of picking early in picks and bans, and not worry about getting countered.

Knowing what to pick and when to pick is important during champion select. There are some champions that have countless of counters, while others are very strong when used as a counter pick. If you have to pick your champion before the enemy picks his, I highly recommend going for a comfort or stable pick.

Credit: Riot Games

Comfort picks are simply champions that you perform best on. Jeong “Apdo” Sang-gil’s Twisted Fate comes to mind, and Song “Rookie” Eui-jin’s Orianna. Since you are so confident with the champion, even if you get counter-picked, you can still do as well.

3. Communicate from Champion Select until the end of the game

If you play a good Syndra but you’re afraid of the enemy picking Zed or Fizz, ban one and ask your teammates to ban the other for you. Remember to also ask if anyone wants first pick. Helping your teammate secure their champion can make or break a game, especially if they’re one trick pony.

The biggest difference between a Diamond player and a Challenger player in this respect is knowing how to win the game with the pieces that you have. Some players have the mechanics, but they only care about themselves. They want to snowball the lane, or try to 1v5, but this ain’t Dota.

Give support to your teammates when needed, go for objectives, use your lane priority, and do something useful instead of just staying in your lane. To achieve these, always communicate with your teammates and let them know what you plan to do.

All the best on the Rift!

READ MORE: 5 pro tips to stun enemies with Syndra by Chawy