Worlds 2023 Preview: Will Faker And T1 Finally Reclaim… | RiftFeed
The unkillable demon king is going for a fourth title

Worlds 2023 Preview: Will Faker And T1 Finally Reclaim Their Crown?

Esports 20-09-2023 17:55

The unkillable demon king is once again back at the World Championship! After heartbreak struck in last year's Worlds finals against DRX, the most successful organization in League of Legends history is looking to set the record straight.

Faker and Guma MSI 2023
Worlds 2023: Will T1's Faker and Gumayusi finally rise to the top of the world? | © Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games

If there is one player who is always mentioned first in the discussion for the undisputed greatest player of all time, it has to be Korean superstar Lee 'Faker' Sang-hyeok. The 27-year-old mid laner will attend his eigth World Championship in 2023 – and it will be in his home country, South Korea!

At three World Championship titles, two Mid-Season Invitational titles and ten LCK titles, the king of League of Legends is still not done. Joined by a squad of four young and hungry prodigies, Faker is looking to bring the crown back to where it belongs!

Worlds 2023 Preview: What Are T1's Chances To Win The Title?

T1 LCK Spring 2023
T1 can never be counted out at a World Championship. | © LCK/Riot Games

Compared to Worlds 2022, the organization has not had many changes. After recovering from an arm injury, Faker has returned during the LCK summer split and will once again lead T1 into the most important tournament of the year. 

Joining him are the same players on the Rift. Top laner Choi 'Zeus' Woo-je is committed to prove that his first season as a full-time starting top laner on T1 was not a fluke, while jungler Mun 'Oner' Hyeon-jun is looking to improve his record against Korean teams on the Worlds stage. 

Bot laner Lee 'Gumayusi' Min-hyeong will be done playing the second fiddle behind JD Gaming's Park 'Ruler' Jae-hyuk and Gen.G's Kim 'Peyz' Su-hwan, and a Worlds title would definitely put him at the top of the food chain. Supporting him will be Ryu 'Keria' Min-seok, who will be looking to get back into the debate for the best player in the world.

The only change to the team was in the coaching staff, where World Champion Bae 'Bengi' Seong-woong resigned from his position during the summer split. He is succeeded by his former assistant, Im 'Tom' Jae-hyeon.

Worlds 2023 Preview: Not All That Glitters Is Gold For T1 – So Far

T1 2023 2
Following Faker's arm injury, T1 had to play without Faker for a while. | © LCK/Riot Games

However, T1 could not have had a more difficult 2023 season. After an almost flawless spring split, they fell short in the playoffs finals against Gen.G. After a strong start to the summer split, Faker had to sideline himself due to an arm injury. 

Although substitute mid laner Yoon 'Poby' Sung-won was praised by Faker for his performance during his LCK stint, T1 were not able to maintain their form and lost seven out of their eight matches without Faker. 

Once Faker rejoined the starting line-up, they went on a resurgence and beat Dplus KIA and kt Rolster in the LCK playoffs. Only falling short to Gen.G, they would beat kt Rolster again to secure their place in the grand finals, where they lost to Gen.G again for their fourth straight grand finals loss.

Ahead of the 2023 World Championship, T1 are not considered the big favorite. However, they have already ended JD Gaming's Worlds 2022 run in the semifinals, and if T1 can get back to their best form, there is no doubt they will make it extremely difficult for tournament favorites JDG and Gen.G.

To bring it home, they will need to get out of their own heads. It seems like they are always one step below their capabilities whenever they participate in a grand final, and this proved to be their demise in their 2-3 loss in the 2022 finals against DRX. 

As usual, you can not count T1 out for the 2023 World Championship – but they need to overcome their difficulties if they want to crown themselves World Champions for the fourth time in League of Legends history.

Manuel Hirsch

I'm currently studying journalism, and when I'm not busy working on uni projects, I get into all kinds of content creation. This is what eventually led me to EarlyGame and Riftfeed!

I'm a long-standing fan of all kinds of Nintendo...