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Esports: Saturday League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational match previews

Considered one of the biggest events on the Esports calendar, the League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational is back and in full flow.

The international S-Tier event features teams from across the globe and pits some of the best League of Legends divisions against one another from South Korea's LCK to China's LPL. 

As well looking to lay down a marker well in advance of the end-of-season League of Legends World Championship, teams competing in the MSI are also competing for a prize pool of $250,000. 

The event began with a Play-In Stage with three teams progressing to the playoffs, in which they joined up with the other five teams competing in the main event. 

Bilibili Gaming, G2 Esports and Golden Guardians were the three sides to progress from the Play-In Stage to the Bracket Stage, which began earlier this week. 

On Saturday there are two more key contests in the Bracket Stage of the MSI with LCK foes Gen.G Esports clashing with fellow juggernauts T1 in the upper-bracket semi-finals, while G2 Esports meet MAD Lions later in the day in the first round of the lower bracket.

Clash of South Korean titans on the cards in upper-bracket semi-finals

WhatGen.G vs T1
WhereCopper Box Arena, London
When07.00 ET, Saturday May 13th 2023
How to watchbet365 Sports Live Streaming, Riot Games Twitch Channel / League of Legends Esports Youtube Channel
OddsGen.G +120, T1 -163

This is the kind of match-up right at home in a major event like the Mid-Season Invitational. 

Gen.G Esports and T1 are not only two of the biggest teams in South Korea but they are two of the biggest teams in the entirety of League of Legends right now and this has the potential to be a classic. 

Each of the last three LCK major finals in South Korea - the LCK Spring 2023, the LCK Summer 2022 and the LCK Spring 2022 - have been between Gen.G and T1, while both sides also made it to the semi-finals of last year's League of Legends World Championship. 

T1 are +225 to win the MSI 2023, while Gen.G are +250 and the pair could be tough to separate in London. 

Neither encountered any major issues in their upper-bracket quarter-finals, either, with Gen.G running out 3-1 winners against G2 Esports and T1 sweeping aside MAD Lions 3-0. 

T1 are favourites at -163 to win this one but lost two to Gen.G in the finals of the LCK Spring 2023 and LCK Summer 2022, so the better way to approach this clash of the titans is to back over 4.5 maps at +162.

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European foes could be tough to separate in lower bracket

WhatG2 Esports vs MAD Lions
WhereCopper Box Arena, London
When12.00, Saturday May 13th 2023
How to watchbet365 Sports Live Streaming, Riot Games Twitch Channel / League of Legends Esports Youtube Channel
OddsG2 Esports -250, MAD Lions +175

Dropping down to the lower bracket for the next contest on Saturday and it will be G2 Esports up against MAD Lions in the first round. 

G2 and MAD Lions lost to Gen.G and T1 respectively in the upper bracket, relegating them to this level, and defeat in this match for either side would bring an end to their MSI 2023 campaign. 

G2 Esports had to play through the Play-In Stage to reach the Bracket Stage of the MSI but punters should not read too much into that and it could have actually done the team the world of good, as they gained confidence from 2-0 wins over LOUD and PSG Talon. 

Both of these teams ply their trade in Europe's LEC and while G2 Esports qualified as a result of winning the LEC Winter, MAD Lions are in the event because they won the subsequent LEC Spring. 

G2 Esports did well to nick a map off Gen.G Esports in their first match in the Bracket Stage but there is perhaps less between these European foes than the prices suggest and punters may want to consider backing MAD Lions at +1.5 on the match handicap at -125

For those expecting the contest to go the distance, meanwhile, a bet on over 4.5 maps at +175 could also be worth a look.

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