EmpireWelmu vs FXOLucky
While the people who are fortunate and are able to afford the MLG Arena’s PPV cost are enjoying those matches, the people who are unable to drop those 20 dollars for the stream are still treated with a tournament of the same calibre, in terms of prize pool and lineup. The Republic of Gamer’s Winter Assembly 2012 is terrific tournament held in Finland, and this past one did not disappoint. With players like Taeja, Polt, Hero, Moon, Stephano, Jinro, TLO, White-Ra, Bling, and Lucky: these are just a handful of the stacked field of international competitors there.
One of the greatest moments of the tournament was one of the tried and true matchups of the Foreigner vs Korean hype machine. In the Ro16, the stage right after pool play, Empire’s lone Protoss Welmu, who surprised many people by just making it out of his group (He barely squeeked out a tiebreaker for 2nd with Kas and Titan) was paired to play the ultra-aggressive style of Lucky, who is a GSL mainstay but I say he is more known for beating Naniwa countless times and getting 2nd at IPL 3. Most gambling men would have bet their money on Lucky but Apollo said it the best, if you know anything about the Finnish Protoss player, his PvZ can pull out wins over superior players with his aggressive gateway style. Do not count Welmu out.
The 1st game was on GSL Daybreak, where both players opted for Standard openers, A Forge-Fast Expand for the Protoss and a quick 3rd for the Zerg player. Some excellent scouting from Lucky saw that Welmu was going for a Warp Prism harass with Sentries blocking drones at the mineral patches, so the Protoss player did no damage with this initial maneuver which was unfortunate. However his main plan was an interesting one. While getting +2 Attack, he was massing immortals and sentries. Welmu’s strategy was going for a powerful 2-base push with a sans-zealot army so he can abuse forcefields with his ranged units. With something like 10 sentries, 3 immortals, and the rest stalkers, he moved out to the Zerg’s 3rd. The best way to describe this Protoss Army, a Roach slaying deathsquad, and Lucky, like most zergs, relied on the Roach in the mid game to dictate the flow of action in ZvP.
Initially, it looked like Welmu would destroy the Korean Zerg in one fell swoop but Lucky, true to his style, did the correct maneuver and backstabbed Welmu’s natural expansion. The Finnish Protoss player did not anticipate this at all and had only one cannon and absolutely no sentries. The 1st thing the FXO player also did was snipe the cybernetics core, that was part of the front wall, so he could only warp in zealots to aid in the defense of his main base. So the scenario now was full on base trade.
The base trade however lasted longer than usual with more twists and turns than a Scooby-Doo episode. Down to the last moment, it was still intense, I won’t spoil who won but this picture of the British Casting Archon tells all of how the heart wrenching the final moments of the game was. A must watch match!