The Sibol MLBB team has defied the odds and proved the doubters wrong.
Seen to only have 10 percent chance against a stacked Indonesian team, the Filipinos went full throttle and dominated their way back to the apex of the Southeast Asian MLBB scene with a 3-1 victory over the fancied foes and retain the gold medal in the 31st SEA Games on Friday, May 20 at the Vietnam National Convention Center.
The quintet of Jonmar “OhmyV33nus” Villaluna, Danerie “Wise” Del Rosario, Salic “Hadji” Imam, Kyle “Dominic” Soto and Howard “Owl” Gonzales rode on a nerve-wracking comeback win in Game 3 to once again zoom to the top of its classic rivalry with Indonesia and successfully defend its gold medal in the esport title.
With Indonesia dominating Sibol during team fights, the Filipinos held on to their base defense which at one point left with only Hadji’s Xavier to defend before finally getting the break in the final Lord fight.
The Indonesians secured the 20-minute Lord at the expense of their two heroes, allowing a complete Sibol team to go for a one lane push to steal the victory.
Devastated by the Game 3 loss, the Indonesians looked rattled in Game 4 to which Sibol took advantage with an aggressive early game rotation.
A clash in the midlane at the 10-minute mark favored the Filipinos with Owl completing a triple kill on his Beatrix to power the PH’s five-man wipe of Indonesia.
Sibol then wasted no time and went for another one-lane push, taking down all of Indonesia’s outer turrets along with the base to seal the deal.
Hadji had a series-long brilliance on his midlane heroes but none-bigger than his 6-1-14 line on the Xavier in Game 3. Owl also had his fair share of the spotlight putting up his best performances in Game 1 where he finished with a 9-1-6 tally on the Wanwan and in crucial Game 3 where he tallied a 9-3-5 KDA on the Karrie.
It was the Filipinos who drew the first blood when they neutralized the early game composition of Indonesia as they secured the first two turtles to build a massive gold lead although the Indonesians held to on to their base defense to drag the game to the late game.
After a back-and-forth affair and a grueling tech pauses, the Filipinos leaned on its micro plays in the final Lord dance to score a wipeout and end the opening game, 17-8, in 29-minute run time.
Game 2 saw the Indonesians leveling the series after they got their hands on their comfort picks. Timely hooks landed by Vynn’s Franco on Sibol’s damage dealers in Owl’s Brody and Salic “Hadji” Imam’s Cecilion secured the 18-10 equalizer.
That however was the lone point of Indonesia as their star-studded cast led by players from their top teams RRQ Hoshi and Onic Indonesia failed to end the Philippines’ MLBB domination