Chapter 324 – Unexpected Map Selection
They probably realized that the next match would be very difficult to play. In the past few days, the players of the national team were very serious in their training. They didn’t need Li Cangyu’s order as everyone consciously came to the training room at 8 in the morning.
Even the usual lively Cheng Wei sat quietly in front of his computer, familiarizing himself with the South Korea maps already published.
After the quarter-finals, most of the maps independently developed by various countries had been published on the Miracle Village’s Intranet. Four South Korean maps had been released and one was banned in the last game. The Chinese team only had the Eight-Trigram Array that hadn’t been revealed.
In order to give the players enough time to prepare for the semi-finals, the organizers specifically gave everyone a two day holiday. The Chinese and Korean match would start at 9 o’clock the day after tomorrow while the semi-finals between the United States and the United Kingdom would be at 3 p.m. on the same day. Staring from this stage, the e-sports channels from every country would be live broadcasting the match.
The teams entering the semi-finals would already receive high prizes from the organizing committed. Thus, the rules for the semi-finals were more stringent than the quarter-finals. In particular, in the selection phase, each country developed map could only be selected once and wasn’t reusable. Moreover, once the selection party submitted a freely developed map, the away country couldn’t disable it.
This rule was to let the weaker countries have the opportunity to use their maps to reverse the situation and not have a sweeping 3:0 score. The higher the level of excellence, the higher the ratings would be and the league’s advertising revenue would naturally be more substantial.
Such a rule was also fair because each country developed their own maps and could use the maps to beat the opponent. However, the top leaders of the league always believed that players and teams with real strength wouldn’t be affected by the map.
Time passed quickly and it was the match day.
Early in the morning, the Chinese team gathered together. They were having breakfast in the restaurant when they meet the South Korean team. The Koreans were dressed nearly in the uniforms and very recognizable. Several South Korean players walked and talked while holding plates. Cheng Wei heard a bunch of Korean words and grabbed his head. “Are they talking about us?”
Tan Shitian replied, “Sure, there is a female player over there looking at you.”
Cheng Wei followed his gaze and sure enough, there was a girl looking at him. He asked doubtfully, “Why is she looking at me?”
“She is a very popular white magician of the South Korean team and the first beauty of the Korean Miracle League, called Hwa Jeongyong. Tan Shitian explained. “Don’t you think she is looking at you with curiosity?”
“Is that so?” Cheng Wei’s face was dazed. “I don’t remember her and… is she really the first beauty of the Korean team? She doesn’t look as good as Yang Muzi.”
Yang Muzi heard this and immediately came over to ask, “Cheng Wei, do you think I look good?”
Cheng Wei’s face instantly turned red and he stuttered, “A-Ah, I’m hungry. I’ll go eat breakfast first.”
Tan Shitian looked at the guy running away and spoke helplessly, “You shouldn’t tease him.”
Yang Muzi poked out her tongue before going back to the topic. I’ve heard of this Hwa Jeongyong. Her way of playing is very cool. The one next to her is… Shim Yoocheol right? He once sparred with Jack of the United States only to leave halfway to eat cold noodles.”
Tan Shitian smiled. “Yes, I heard he is obsessed with cold noodles.”
At this time, Li Cangyu and Ling Xuefeng walked over and listened to the conversation. Li Cangyu couldn’t help interjecting, “Shim Yoocheol’s swordsman is very flexible. the combination and him and Park Joonseo is the ace of the South Korean team. You will definitely see it later on the field.”
Tan Shitian listened to him and couldn’t help joking, “Cat God looks very calm. Do you have a card up your sleeve?”
He had just spoken when several people wearing the Korean team uniforms came to this side with their plates. The one in the front had handsome short hair and Li Cangyu had seen her before. She was the vice-captain of the South Korean team, the archer Kim Yoonhee.
She also saw Li Cangyu and took the initiative to say hello in less fluent Chinese. “Hello, Captain Li.”
Li Cangyu smiled at her and replied politely, “Hello, I good luck with the game.”
Kim Yoonhee was surprised for a moment. She didn’t think the other person would actually cheer for her. Then she quickly adjusted her expression and said gracefully, “I also wish you good luck.”
Once she left, Ling Xuefeng whispered, “Will cheering for the opponent form a curse effect?”
Li Cangyu replied bluntly, “Yes, you discovered it!”
Ling Xuefeng smiled slightly, “Eat quickly. They have your favourite fish porridge.”
Li Cangyu’s eyes shone. “Why didn’t I know about this…”
“I’ll get it for you.”
The two people quickly ate breakfast and then sat on the bus to go to the competition venue.
The venue was already packed. It was early in the morning but the mood of the supporters on both sides was very high. Many people brought their national flags to the venue and their cheers were almost enough to knock out the roof of the venue.
Kou Hongyi and Yu Bing were already in the commentators’ room. At this moment, there was deafening applause and Kou Hongyi quickly said, “Hello everyone, the match will start soon. Thank you for watching this match of China against South Korea! I am Kou Hongyi and I will be explaining this game.”
Yu Bing nodded graciously at the camera and spoke briefly, “Hello everyone, I am Yu Bing.”
“This match is definitely a match between a strong team and a strong team. It won’t be as easy as the previous matches!” Kou Hongyi spoke quickly. “South Korea has always been an e-sports powerhouse. They are world champions in many projects and the level of their Miracle League players isn’t weak. For example, there is the captain Park Joonseo and the vice-captain Kim Yoonhee. The players Shim Yoocheol, Hwa Jeongyong and Bae Jeongho are also very famous in the World’s Miracle League. In terms of popularity, many of the Korean players are more famous than our Chinese players.”
“However, we have several Chinese players who haven’t participated in the world rankings. For example, Cat God and Bai Xuan just returned to the league this year. Tan Shitian is busy writing small paragraphs and forgot to participate in the rankings. Yu Pingsheng’s introverted personality means he never players in the international servers and Xiao Han, Qin Mo and Zhuo Hang are young players who are progressing very quickly. The overall strength of the Chinese team doesn’t lose to South Korea. Yu Bing calmly analyzed. “From the perspective of the comprehensive lineup, both sides are relatively balanced in teams of race and class and many sets of tactics can be produced. This is also the characteristic of a strong team.”
“Sister Bing is right. The key is to look at the arrangements of the game.” Kou Hongyi opened a web page which contained the World Miracle League’s voting page. “From the perspective of the support rate, the Western media almost one-sidedly believe that South Korea can sweep up the Chinese team. After all, South Korea has a higher winning percentage in other e-sports projects.”
“Still, this is the first year for the World MIracle Competition and it is also the first time China and South Korea are facing each other. The team that wins can’t be inferred from the normal winning rate.” Yu Bing changed the topic as she declared decisively., “I believe that the Chinese team will hit the Western media in the face!”
This sentence caused the blood of the domestic audience to boil as they commented: [Sister Bing is right!]
What was Cat God best it? It was hitting the other side in the face! Just look at the French captain’s swollen face!
The match started quickly. Li Cangyu and Park Joonseo walked to the command post and pressed the confirmation button.
The referee started to draw lots. On the big screen, the flags of China and South Korea started to roll. Finally, there was the familiar system sound and the Korean team’s flag was frozen in the centre of the screen.
“The South Korea team will go first!” Kou Hongyi spoke nervously. “What mode will Park Joonseo choose?”
Park Joonseo didn’t hesitate as he submitted the mode and maps in 10 seconds.
Match mode: Death racing.
Maps: Dark Reef, Frost Temple, Time and Space Illusion.
The audience was shocked. All three maps submitted by Park Joonseo were official Miracle maps and there was no map freely developed by the Korean team!
Taking the initiative to give up the map advantage, was Park Joonseo that confident?
The foreign e-sports reporters started speculating about Park Joonseo’s intentions.
However, Li Cangyu understood Park Joonseo’s intentions the moment he saw the three thumbnails.
Before the World Competition started, South Korea’s vice-captain Kim Yoonhee took the initiative to invite the Chinese team to play a friendly game. The mode chosen at that time was death racing and the map was Dark Reef.
In the game, Li Cangyu let Xiao Han go to practice and they beat the newcomers sent by the Korean team.
Now in the semi-finals, Park Joonseo once again selected death racing and the Dark Reef map, obviously wanting to have a formal game against the Chinese team on the same map.
Li Cangyu smiled and decisively banned Frost Temple and Time and Space Illusion, leaving Dark Reef.
He knew that the South Korean team must’ve carried out special exercises on this map but since the other party sacrificed their map advantage, he had to take this confrontation.
Go forward into danger.
The Chinese team couldn’t lose momentum at the start!
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