League of Legends teams across the world are readying themselves for the final regional events in the calendar and there is plenty to look forward to in South Korea's LCK Summer Split starting this week.
Ten teams from the region will clash in a round-robin format in the coming months, with the top six advancing to the play-offs and the top two qualifying directly for the semi-finals.
With places at the highly-coveted League of Legends World Championship at stake, it is not to be missed.
What: LCK Summer Split, League of Legends
Where: South Korea (Online/Offline)
When: 15th June to 14th August 2022
How to watch: LCK Global Youtube Channel/Twitch
In each of the last three international League of Legends tournaments, the runners-up have come from South Korea, with T1 the latest side to fall at the final hurdle against Chinese outfit Royal Never Give Up in the Mid-Season Invitational last month.
But make no mistake, this T1 team are incredibly strong and they blew apart the field at the LCK Spring Split earlier in the year.
They dominated the regular season with an 18-0 win-loss record putting them top of the standings before they won both of their knockout matches to be crowned champions.
T1 won the tournament without losing a match and having dropped only one game in the process and they are spearheaded by a juggernaut of the Esport in mid laner Lee "Faker" Sang-hyeok.
But their failure to go the distance at the Mid-Season Invitational, albeit against a decent RNGU side, will give the rest of the LCK region hope that they can indeed be beaten and they could be worth swerving this time around in the outright market.
Having finished as runners-up in the LCK Spring Split, Gen.G will be a likely selection for those wanting to oppose T1 in the Summer Split.
Gen.G lost to T1 in the final after winning 15 of their 18 matches in the regular season and they have enjoyed a great off-seaso,n with mid laner Jeong "Chovy" Ji-hoon and support Son "Lehends" Si-woo signing up for the organisation.
DWG KIA were another of the standout sides in what was a top-heavy LCK Spring, finishing third in the standings with an 11-7 record before thrashing Fredit BRION 3-0 in the quarter-finals and losing 3-2 to Gen.G Esports in the semi-finals.
That was a close encounter and giving DWG KIA the edge this time around could be the return of top laner Jang "Nuguri" Hagwon.
"Nuguri" is an iconic player in the Esport, having helped DWG KIA to the World Championship title back in 2020 and he returns to his former side after a brief spell with FunPlus Phoenix and a consequent break from the game.
Having his firepower in their roster should help DWG KIA take their game to the next level and in what should be a more open Summer Split, they are worth a bet to go the distance.
There is still a chance that the LCK will be allocated four seeds for the World Championship later this year and one side who will be looking to capitalise if that is the case is Kwangdong Freecs.
Among the most exciting teams in the LCK Spring earlier this year, Kwangdong have every chance of making the playoffs and establishing themselves as one of the top four teams in the region.
At the LCK Spring, they placed fifth with an 8-10 win-loss record but stepped it up a gear in the play-offs, overpowering DRX in the quarter-finals. With Yoo "FATE" Su-hyeok overseeing their mid lane, they have every chance of going far.
As for the rest of the pack KT Rolster will be hoping Lee "VicLa" Dae-kwang's arrival will freshen things up, while Fredit BRION will be hoping to build on their first ever playoff appearance in the LCK Spring.
Hanwha Life Esports, meanwhile, finished bottom in the LCK Spring with three wins in 18 matches and, given they are made up of predominantly Challenger and Academy players, that could again be the case.
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