After three regular season first place finishes and three trips to the finals, the ROX Tigers have finally captured their first domestic title, with a 3-2 win over KT Rolster.
It wasn’t easy. This Summer Finals were also the first time since OnGameNet’s Champions became LoL Champions Korea that a finals series went to the full five games. KT hung on until the bitter end, and at times it looked like the Tigers’ aggression would get the better of them.
Taliyah ruled the first two games with mid laners Lee “KurO” Seo-haeng taking her to the rift in Game 1 and Song “Fly” Yong-jun playing her in Game 2. After bans in Games 4 and 5, KurO played her in the Game 5 decider.
However, the real hero for the Tigers was top laner Song “Smeb” Kyung-ho, who had game-saving Cannon Barrages on Gangplank in Game 5, killing off Fly’s Aurelion Sol at the end of a teamfight and later stealing the Baron away from KT jungler Go “Score” Dong-bin.
A homegrown success story, the Tigers were formed in the 2014-15 offseason, primarily from players who were thinking about retirement or had been turned down by other teams. They’ve dominated the regular season multiple times in Korea, but up until now have failed to claim victory when it mattered in the playoffs. They lost to SK Telecom T1 twice in the LCK Finals and again to SKT at the 2015 World Championship Finals.
With this victory, the Tigers capture Korea’s first-place seed at the 2016 World Championship. SK Telecom T1, winners of LCK Spring 2016 and the 2016 Mid-Season Invitational, claim the second seed through circuit points. KT Rolster can still qualify for Worlds through the upcoming qualification gauntlet.