As the UKLC enters its third week, most organisations have had the chance to feel out their competition. Meaning there are no excuses for any of these sides to not pick up some valuable points.
However, one team that has already hit the ground running, to some peoples surprise, are Diabolus Esports. Last split’s regular-season winners underwent a massive overhaul, having to replace their head coach along with all five of their starting line-up.
Nevertheless, the side currently sits joint third as they look to push for a play-off place. Diabolus’ jungler, PFI, feels that many did underestimate his side coming into the summer split, especially considering the roster they had to live up to in spring.
He says: “I do feel like we were being underestimated, which is understandable though because a lot of our players were to some extent an unknown quantity. Furuy and Kakan being from other smaller leagues before the UKLC. The Heathen and Dragdar/Cokey only played in FOC with completely different teammates,”
“Some people may say we have big shoes to fill. With the philosophy the team has been built on, it feels like we are here to become better players, not to get results,”
“I feel like we’ve performed ok, we’ve had some decent games and won some too, but I think we still have a long way to go and I’m sure with some more practice, we’ll get there in no time.”
The jungler was part of Darkspawn Gaming last year, a side that failed to requalify for the UKLC this split. So, when he was announced as Diabolus’ new jungler there were questions that needed to be answered. Given his performances so far this competition, those doubts are slowly fading away.
PFI understands that this is a step up from his previous teams, and so far he seems to be thriving in this new environment.
“Diabolus has been an extremely different experience in comparison to the other teams I have played in. So far there has been a large focus on mentality as well as support staff whether it’s our coach/strategic coach or our analyst,”
“It’s also been different in a way where there are certain expectations. This not necessarily from the owners/staff but from the public. On other teams I’ve been on, we’ve always been in a position where very little is expected from us, so since I’m on a team with history now, there’s a lot more pressure.”
Diabolus has a chance to continue their impressive run by picking up points for a third consecutive week, if they beat Demise in the new “Hell Classico”. The former Newcastle Jaguars player knows that their opponents will not be easy to beat, especially considering that Demise is also defying a lot of peoples early expectations.
“I think the game on Wednesday will be interesting since Demise has shown so far to be quite a fearless team, who aren’t afraid to try new things such as the Garen/Yuumi. However, I have no doubt in myself as well as the team that we will perform and take the W,”
“Momentum is great for our team and another victory is always good for confidence. I’m sure we’ll continue to find wins each week, or we’ll certainly try our best!”
With a multitude of roster changes and a new identity for Diabolus, it’s extremely intriguing to see how this line-up performs throughout the split. Still, this organisation has expectations and goals that they want to reach. According to PFI, a playoff place is the ultimate objective.
“My personal goals for the rest of the split is to achieve top four as well as just improving myself as a player and a person. Both of which, I’m sure the boys and I will obtain given enough hard work and effort!”
Make sure you tune into the UKLC this Wednesday Live on Twitch at 6pm to see some of the UK’s best talent in action!
By Tom Daniels