The first day of the RO8 saw Lucky and Noname advance to the semi-finals, leaving Qxc and Adonminus as 5th-8th place finishers. Tonight we complete our top 4 line-up with another amazing pair of BO5 series.
Match One - JonnyREcco vs Satiini - 1900 CEST
This is the second RO8 game where I'm left thinking 'Really?!' - first we had Qxc vs Lucky and now we have what is going to be another fantastic TvZ between JonnyREcco and Satiini. Again such a shame that one of these players has to drop out in the RO8 - but that's just how things are!
JonnyREcco is going to have to be the favourite going into this one. Although he has been under the radar since the launch of HotS he has recently joined a new team and is finding a lot more stability. He's the player who has had big results in the past and in the RO16 he showed us just how good he can still be with a solid performance to place top of the group ahead of Lucky, Sjaak and Lillekanin.
Satiini is well known for doing really well in online cups - but is he at the same level as JonnyREcco? Satiini looked good in the Season 2 Finals, but was slightly shaky against Noname in his RO16 group. There's actually not really so much for us to look at when it comes to Satiini. He almost dropped a map to JackO in the RO16, but such a weird game leaves a lot to the imagination.
It will definitely be a great series though - Satiini is definitely at a level where he can take out JonnyREcco, but it won't be easy. Maybe a good mixture of Proxy 11/11, Stim timings and Greedy Builds will be help him to be unpredictable enough to take this series. But we saw on Monday that with efficient scouting Zerg can be pretty damn good against multiple different Terran builds.
Prediction : JonnyREcco 3 - 1 Satiini
Match Two - Tefel vs Storm - 2030 CEST
ZvZ! Who doesn't love a little bit of a mirror match-up to spice things up? ZvZ is such a fabulous match-up because it seems to be the match-up where people will throw in a lot of different strategies, including multiple all-ins. JonnyREcco vs Lucky was a great example of this - a BO3 in which we saw three completely different games.
I feel Storm has to be the player who is being aggressive and changing things up more than anybody - he's not only the underdog in this match but he is the underdog of the whole of the RO8. And for fair reason - he's up against some big names when you consider his opponent is Tefel. A BO5 is going to be hard for him, but it does give him multiple opportunities to try out different styles and see what is going to work best for him.
From Tefel I think we'll be expecting to see some very safe play. Pool firsts, a lot of scouting and so on because at the end of the day he will be going into this thinking 'I am the better player, I can win even if I give myself small disadvantages.' But it's ZvZ - if he feels he has superior micro then he too can start to change things up with a mixture of all-ins.
ZvZ is a battle of bravery and guts, who dares to change things up the most. Storm has nothing to lose, which is a dangerous weapon to have. Tefel has experience - which is one of the beast defences you could hope for against a potentially unpredictable player. Tefel should win this, but maybe Storm can cause an upset on one map or even two.
Prediction : Tefel 3 - 1 Storm