Daigo Umehara has qualified for the Capcom Cup 2020.

The Beast shocked everyone by winning an absolutely stacked Capcom Cup Asia East online tournament, defeating some of Asia’s top FGC pros.

Daigo swept through pools looked better than he has in years. In fact, he could arguably be the favorite to win it all at the Capcom Cup.

Not convinced? Here’s some evidence:

5. Daigo doesn’t get cheesed

Daigo found himself up against uemura_blanka, a Warlord-ranked Blanka player in the Top 32 of the online qualifier. A lot of high-caliber players were knocked down to the loser’s bracket, or even eliminated, as they found themselves battling unpredictable players who tried to blitz their opponents.

But, with his 23 years of professional fighting game experience, Daigo has seen every possible strategy. During his set against uemura_blanka, Daigo constantly used his V-Reversal that stopped his opponent’s offensive pressure. After creating enough space, Daigo would punish uemura_blanka whenever he tried to get in range.

4. Daigo’s impeccable neutral game is better than ever 

In his match against Shuto, Daigo displayed his insane footsie game by dodging and punishing his enemy’s sweeps and, at the same time, stopping his opponent’s forward dash with quick normals. 

3. Daigo can still read his opponent like a book

Regardless of who the opposition is, Daigo has been able to keep up with all the top tier players in the CPT circuit. Concurrently, Daigo is a player that is very difficult to condition during a set. He often switches from offense to defense in opportune moments, which causes his opponents to second-guess what they should do mid-match.

2. Daigo has actually improved his execution

Daigo has clearly spent the extra time during COVID-19 to train up his execution. And it has definitely paid off. Even at 39 years of age, Daigo was able to pull off extremely difficult pixel-perfect combos all weekend.

Throughout the tournament, Daigo would opt for max-damage combos that gave him the life lead, and forced his opponents to play against his defensive Guile.

During the winner’s final match, Daigo stopped Hyungsuk “Verloren” Kong’s pressure with a low jab that started a 28-hit combo which ultimately won the round.

1. He’s as clutch as ever

Remember EVO moment 37? In Daigo’s match against Hajime “Tokido” Taniguchi’s Akuma, Daigo proved he’s still as clutch as ever. After a hard knockdown, Tokido went for a Raging Demon Critical Art, which Daigo dodged using an incredibly timed ex-Flash Kick. With Tokido exposed, Daigo won the set, answering with a sick 21-hit combo V-Trigger activation combo.

READ MORE: Watch Daigo’s Kage face off against Tokido’s Urien