Overwatch World Cup Preview: Group Stage Incheon

Overwatch World Cup Group Stage

We aren’t even done celebrating the London Spitfire’s championship win and we’re already moving on to the next big Overwatch tournament. Next up, we have the Overwatch World Cup in Korea! First, players and fans from around the world will come to Incheon, South Korea for the group stages. Also, Korea will be hosting Russia, Finland, Japan, Chinese Taipei, and Hong Kong for the first group stage event. Let us check out the teams battling it out tomorrow.

South Korea

  • Pan-Seung “Fate” Koo (LA Valiant)
  • Tae-Hong “Meko” Kim (NYXL)
  • Jong-Ryeol “Saebyeolbe” Park (NYXL)
  • Hae-Seong “Libero” Kim (NYXL)
  • Seong-Hyun “Jjonak” Kim (NYXL)
  • Yeon-Jun “Ark” Hong (NYXL)
  • Jae-Hyeok “Carpe” Lee (Philadelphia Fusion)

A majority of the Korean national team is made up of New York Excelsior members. Therefore, you can expect the synergy to be through the roof for the defending champions. The New York Excelsior were not able to catch up to the meta in the OWL Playoffs. Still, this Korean roster is teeming with some of the best players in the world, and will be ready to take the World Championship crown again. We will see how they adapt to the newest meta, especially with Wrecking Ball on the playable patch.

Russia

  • Denis “Tonic” Rulev (Contenders EU: Bazooka Puppies)
  • Ilia “Txao” Makarov (Contenders EU: CIS Hope)
  • Stanislav “Mistakes” Danilov (Boston Uprising)
  • Aleksandr “MayN” Katarskii (Contenders EU: CIS Hope)
  • Andrey “Engh” Sholokhov (Contenders EU: CIS Hope)
  • George “ShaDowBurn” Gushcha (Philadelphia Fusion)
  • Andrei “uNFixed” Leonov (Contenders EU: CIS Hope)

Overwatch League vets Mistakes and ShaDowBurn will lead the charge for the Russian national team this year. Surrounding them will be a plethora of top-tier talent from the European Contenders league. Hopefully, CIS Hope team captain Engh will be able to face the bright lights of the World Cup and shot call his team to victory. Synergy should also be high, as a good amount of the players are from the CIS Hope Contenders team.

Japan

  • Sean “ta1yo” Henderson (Contenders PAC: CYCLOPS)
  • Kazuki “SamuraiD” Nouno (Contenders PAC: CYCLOPS)
  • Kaito “kenmohororo” Yoshida (Contenders PAC: CYCLOPS)
  • Ryoma “Sabagod” Tsuji (Contenders PAC: CYCLOPS)
  • Takahiro “CLAIRE” Watanabe (Contenders PAC: CYCLOPS)
  • Kenji “AmeKen” Hisano (Contenders PAC: CYCLOPS)
  • Yuuma “dep” Hashimoto (Contenders PAC: CYCLOPS)

Pacific Overwatch Contender team CYCLOPS will be representing Japan in the World Cup this year. Also, they have been playing very well as of late in the Contenders PAC. They are actually at the top of the standings right now and look like a strong team heading into the group stages. Look for Japan to surprise some teams and maybe even make it through to the next round.

Taipei

  • Wei-Teng “kant” Kao
  • Chao-Hua “ATing” Chen (Contenders PAC: Hong Kong Attitude)
  • Jing-Han “TenTen” Liao (Contenders PAC: Hong Kong Attitude)
  • Keng-Yu “ShaiuLin” Lin (Contenders PAC: Hong Kong Attitude)
  • Shiao-Chin “Craz1S” Wei (Contenders PAC: Nova Esports)
  • Ruei-jhou “OYO” Gao (Contenders PAC: Nova Esports)
  • Erh-Fu “BLUE” Kao (Contenders PAC: Nova Esports)
Read More:  Shanghai Dragons re-signs 7 players, parts ways with CoMa

With a lineup created from a combination of Nova Esports and Hong Kong Attitude, this Taipei squad looks underwhelming going into the World Cup. Hong Kong Attitude is sitting in third place in the Contenders PAC, but Nova Esports is sitting near the bottom of the standings in the same region. As a result, I do expect this team to be a lower tier squad when comparing them to the rest of the group stage teams, but do not underestimate their skills.

Hong Kong

  • Kin-Long “ManGoJai” Wong (Contenders PAC: Hong Kong Attitude)
  • Ka-Chung “GZQQ” Wong
  • Chi-Yeung “Moowe” Yip (Contenders PAC: Hong Kong Attitude)
  • Tsz-Kit “Mikouw” Wan (Contenders PAC: Hong Kong Attitude)
  • Chung-Ching “JazZy” Pak (Contenders China: LGD Gaming)
  • Chan-Yuan “YiWind” Ho
  • Cheuk-Pang “AmCrazy” Lai

Similar to Taipei, Hong Kong is sporting plenty of players from the Hong Kong Attitude. Therefore, I do expect them to be near the bottom of the standings by the end of the group stage. For example, they were at the receiving end of an Australian beatdown in a showmatch back in early August. However, the Hong Kong team believes that they will be able to play at a higher standard come the World Cup.

Finland

  • Joona “Fragi” Laine (Philadelphia Fusion)
  • Joonas “Zappis” Alakurtti (Florida Mayhem)
  • Jonas “Shaz” Souvaara (LA Gladiators)
  • Benjamin “BigGoose” Isohanni (LA Gladiators)
  • Jiri “LiNkzr” Masalin (Houston Outlaws)
  • Timo “Taimou” Kettunen (Dallas Fuel)
  • Tuomo “Davin” Leppänen (Contenders EU: Team Gigantti)

A plethora of Overwatch League pros will front the attack for the Finnish national squad tomorrow. Led by star DPS player LiNkzr, there is a lot of hope for this European squad. Additionally, many of these players already competed with each other! This lineup is a callback to Team Gigantti, who won Season Zero of Overwatch Contenders Europe. We will see if they can find similar success at the World Cup group stage.

Overwatch World Cup Details

The Incheon group stage will take place on August 16-18 at 8 p.m. PDT. They will be held at the Paradise Studio in Incheon, South Korea. Also, international fans can catch all the action on Overwatch‘s various Twitch.tv channels. Additionally, all maps will be available for play in the group stage, which is a big change from the Overwatch League. Here’s the full group stage schedule:


What are your thoughts on the World Cup group stage teams? Let us know what you think in the comments below! If you want more Overwatch content, check us out here!


Read More!