League of Legends

History of SKT (Chapter I)

LeagueofLegends3 - History of SKT (Chapter I)

Hi! This is my third article here in Reddit and with quarantine going on I've had enough time to develop something new. Looking at highlights this season I thought it would be cool to post the history of SKT because from now on it's going to be just T1, so I thought the SKT part deserves to be written. So here it is and hope you enjoy it!

The beginning

On the one hand, after failing to qualify for Worlds in Season 2 with Azubu Blaze, Reapered, one of the best (if not the best) top laner in the world and actual coach of C9, decided lo leave the team and create a new one: Eat Sleep Game. The roster consisted of Reapered, H0R0 and three guys with no experience at any OGN team in MighTiLy, Raven and StarLast.

On the other hand, SK Telecom is a telecommunications company and South Korea's largest wireless carrier. They were already famous in Korean esports because of their StarCraft team that had the legend himself in BoxeR. So, when Eat Sleep Game won the qualifiers for IEM Cologne, SK Telecom decided to enter League of Legends and acquire the team, adding cCarter (back then L.i.E.S) and kkOma as coaches.

Three days later, SKT made their debut in IEM Cologne, a tournament with the likes of Fnatic, CLG Europe or CJ Entus. They were not seen as the best from Korea, that title belonged to KT Bullets, Azubu Frost, Azubu Blaze or NaJin Sword, but they had already defeated CJ Entus and they could compete against the best of Europe.

On those days, the whole group stage was played continuously, so SKT faced Fnatic, Millenium and mousesports in one day. The team qualified second with a loss vs Fnatic with Reapered as the star and shot caller, H0R0 helping him and providing some experience, MighTiLy as an skilled mid laner with a reduced champ pool and an aggresive and inconsistent botlane in charge of finishing the job of Reapered and H0R0.

In semifinals, SKT did their best and swept MeetYourMakers

to inmediately win the final against Fnatic

. Reapered destroyed everyone with Olaf and Raven (back then UandMe) had an incredible day with Miss Fortune. First challenge, first title and a ticket to IEM World Championship.

Left to right: Raven, StarLast, Reapered, SuNo and Beelzehan (H0R0)

Season 3

The team started the season with a defeat in the qualifiers for IEM Katowice and a last place result in China's StarsWar League that resulted in a new mid laner as a consequence. Similar to MighTiLy, SuNo had a limited champ pool, but his positioning was very good and helped SKT achieve better results. IEM World Championship arrived and SKT was placed in group B with CJ Entus Frost (previously Azubu Frost and current Worlds runner-up), MeetYourMakers, Evil Geniuses, SK Gaming and Anexis eSports.


Again, after a single day, SKT ended first in the group losing only to Anexis, a poland team that lost all its qualifying games for EU LCS. Even so, CJF and SK, in theory the most complicated rivals, had been overcome. Semifinals awaited and the opponent was nothing more than CJ Entus Blaze. One of the best teams in the world that, however, was struggling a little bit since their top laner, Reapered, left the team. His replacement would end up being another top that marked an era, Flame.

But what matters here is that semifinal of the IEM 2013.

was very even, with CJB finding an advantage at the start with some skirmishes. SKT did well later in fights, but CJB's macro was superior.

, CJB again took advantage in the early game and again SKT equaled in kills with good picks. The difference? Macro, again. CJB dominated objectives and closed the series in a convincing 2-0 to qualify for the final they would win against CJ Frost.

Also, at that time SK Telecom decided to follow the tradition and create a second team. cCarter and kkOma were in charge of assembling the roster and they chose two players with previous OGN experience in Impact – former H0R0 teammate at Xenics Storm – and ManDu – the support of GSG, a low board team in OGN Summer 2012 -. The roster was completed with some of the most coveted youth in the scene: Bengi, Faker and Piglet, three rookies that were well-known in soloq and respected by a lot of pro players. From now on, there will be SKT T1 1 and SKT T1 2.

Everything was set and both SKT teams participated at OGN Spring Qualifiers, a huge tournament in which it was necessary to win four Best of 1 and one Best of 3 to qualify. After 15 days and after beating Incredible Miracle 2 and Beggars, SKT managed to place its two representatives in the best league in the world. It was time to make history.

Left to right: PoohManDu, Piglet, Faker, bengi and Impact

So I know this is a long post but I really like put good info to remember those times. Also, I tried to give more context to what was happening at that time in pro LoL. Any feedback is greatly appreciated as I always want to improve my writing skills, especially in a language that's not the primary. Finally, I'm going to continue the story through different chapters, so expect to find the second part and the end of the week 🙂

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