G2 Esports defeated SK Telecom T1 3-1 on Sunday in Madrid to give Europe its second straight League of Legends World Championship final appearance.
It is the first time SK Telecom T1 have failed to make a worlds final in their five appearances at the tournament. G2 Esports will face FunPlus Phoenix in front of a home crowd at 7 a.m. ET on Nov. 10 at AccorHotels Arena in Paris.
G2 Esports are looking to become the first Western team to win worlds since 2011, the year the tournament was instituted as well as a year that featured far fewer Eastern teams than the event does today. G2 Esports entered worlds having recently won League of Legends' other international championship, the Mid-Season Invitational, also by way of beating SK Telecom T1 in the semifinals.
If G2 manage to win their series against FunPlus Phoenix, they will become the first team in League of Legends history to complete the calendar Grand Slam, which is made up of winning both major international tournaments and both domestic finals.
G2 took down SKT in unorthodox fashion, simply giving up objectives in droves and instead finding picks onto out-of-position SKT players to garner advantages. G2 Esports failed to take a Baron until Game 4 of the series, and the Europeans were consistently behind in drake control throughout the series.
G2's single Baron in the series matched Invictus Gaming's single-Baron performance in the 2018 world final as the only series in which a winning team has taken just one Baron. No team has ever had a minus-5 Baron deficit and gone on to win a series.
Coming into the semifinals, teams were 5-61 at worlds when taking no Barons. Of those five wins, four of them came in games in which neither team secured the objective. G2 Esports managed to win two separate games Sunday in which SK Telecom T1 took at least one Baron and G2 Esports took none.
Instead of focusing on objectives, G2 Esports used a roaming Marcin "Jankos" Jankowski and Rasmus "Caps" Winther to find kills and split-push lanes. In Game 1, Caps and Martin "Wunder" Hansen sacrificed themselves to constantly apply pressure, while Jankos (with a 3/0/4 kills/deaths/assists ratio on Rek'Sai) took advantage and found odd-man situations. It was Jankos' fourth deathless game this tournament, the most among junglers.
Game 2 started much like Game 1, but SKT's Kim "Khan" Dong-ha (7/0/5 on Renekton) and Park "Teddy" Jin-seong (5/1/8 on Yasuo) put up masterful performances, to give SKT an advantage. Critically, late in the game, G2 Esports made a call to rush down the Elder Dragon, but SKT jungler Kim "Clid" Tae-min was able to steal it and seal the game for his team.
Game 3 saw the return of G2 AD carry Luka "Perkz" Perković's Xayah. Coming into the game, he was 5-0 on the champion throughout worlds, and he continued the trend in Game 3, putting up a 9/0/4 KDA and giving G2 Esports his second deathless game this tournament.
G2 went down in objectives once again in Game 4 and faced their largest early-game gold deficit of the series at minus-3.1K at 18 minutes. The team proceeded to lose a large teamfight around Baron, giving the objective up once again to SKT. However, Caps (9/4/9 on Qiyana) found multiple picks on Lee "Faker" Sang-hyeok's Qiyana, the last of which finally led to a Baron, and G2 Esports closed out the series.