The Sibol Wild Rift team made its 31st Southeast Asian Games debut on the wrong foot after suffering two straight losses in the opening day of the esports events at the Vietnam National Convention Center on Friday, May 13.
The Filipino bets struggled to find their groove in the twin losses, first suffering a 20-5 beatdown at the hands of Thailand, before yielding to the Malaysian team 14-9 in the second game.
Sibol currently sits at the bottom of the Group B standings with a 0-2 record, behind Malaysia (1-1) and Thailand (2-0). Only the top two teams of the group will advance in the semifinals of the tournament.
The Sibol Wild Rift team, which was composed of pro players from Oasis Gaming, showed jitters in the opener as it always looked a step slower compared to its Thai counterparts.
The Thai dictated the pace all-game long, dominating the Filipinos in every team fights en route to the resounding victory.
The Filipinos had the chance to bounce back from the first game hiccup but it was denied by a steady performance from the Malaysians in the second game.
It was a close affair until the 16-minute mark with both teams still tied in kill score with nine kills apiece and in the game economy with an equal 59k gold.
However, the complexion of the match slowly went to Malaysia’s favor after crucial pick-offs on Renzel “Ecila” Ayuban’s Akali and Mark Clinton “Fate” Pelayo’s Janna.
The Malaysians snowballed from that point and secured major objectives to close out the game.
Although trailing in the standings, the national team still has a chance to make it to the semifinals but it has to sweep both Thailand and Malaysia in Day 2 of the event on Saturday.