The fourth season of Korea StarCraft League is set to kick off on Thursday, October 31 in Seoul as an official Blizzard-run offline tournament. We’ll see 16 elite Korean StarCraft II players battle head-to-head to determine who deserves to take home ₩30,000,000 (~US$25,000) and be crowned Season 4 champion.
The tournament will be divided into two stages; the round of 16 group stage and elimination stage. The group stage will be played between October 31- November 14, with the elimination stage set to begin straight after and conclude on November 29 with the grand finals.
12 of the players earned their spot via qualifiers, while the remaining four made their way to the tournament by finishing top four in 2019 Korea StarCraft League Season 3. For the group stage, the 16 participating players have been seeded into four groups of four players, where a dual tournament format will be implemented, with a best-of-five (Bo5) series used throughout the whole stage.
Top two players from each group will advance into the elimination stage, which will feature the top eight players, who will be seeded into single-elimination brackets. Quarter-finals will be played as Bo5, whereas semi-finals and the grand finals will use a Bo7 format for their matches.
Featuring the elite Korean SC II players, 2019 Korea StarCraft League Season 4 is bound to be a close contest, however there is one player that stands out from the rest as the heavy favorite to claim his second title in a row. That player is Rain, who has established himself as one of the best South Korean SC II players and he will look to cement himself as such with another title-winning run here. Priced at $2.62 at Bet365, Rain is well above his opposition, seeing how the second favorite, Snow, is priced at $7.00 at Bet365. With that in mind, we have to answer the following question - is there any player who can stop Rain and triumph in Seoul or will the 27-year-old produce another title-winning run this November?
As the odds suggest, Jang "Snow" Yoon Chul is the second favorite to triumph at 2019 Korea StarCraft League Season 4, which we believe it's a fair assessment. Looking back at this season's results, Snow finished 9th-12th at Afreeca Starleague Season 7, 3rd-4th at 2019 Korea StarCraft League Season 3 and runner-up at Afreeca Starleague Season 8, where he lost 0-4 to FlaSh in the finals. Last time Snow met with Rain was at Korea StarCraft League Season 3, when Rain convincingly won 4-0, which makes us wonder whether Snow is up to par with Rain, if the two happen to meet again in the tournament.
The third favorite to win at Korea StarCraft League Season 4 is Do "BeSt" Jae Wook ($8.50), who has not yet won an event this season. Taking this into consideration, we have some serious doubts that will change here. At Afreeca Starleague Season 8, which was his most recent event, Best met with Rain in the round of 16 group stage, where he lost 0-2.
Park "Mind" Sung Gyoon ($9.50) is priced as the fourth favorite to triumph at 2019 Korea StarCraft League Season 4, however it's hard to see Mind as one of the favorites. His only notable result this season was a 5th-8th place finish at Afreeca Starleague Season 7. Looking back at that tournament, Mind had a fairly successful run in the round of 16 group stage, where he defeated Modesty and Best to earn a spot in the elimination bracket. There, however, Mind lost to Eff0rt (1-3), who prevented him from advancing further. Odds offered on him are in our eyes fair, and due to his poor form, we would avoid betting on Mind.
Byun "mini" Hyun is priced as high as $19.00 to win the tournament, which we believe underestimates him a bit. Mini has some very solid results behind him this season, including a second-place finish at Afreeca Starleague Season 7, a fourth-place finish at CasterMuse StarLeague and a second-place finish at 2019 Korea StarCraft League Season 3. Unfortunately, Mini disappointed at Afreeca Starleague Season 8, where he suffered elimination in the group stage after dropping matches against Larva and Light. While it's hard to praise Mini for what he has shown back then, he has shown before he should not be underestimated. While backing him to win the whole thing might be slightly too optimistic for our taste, we believe it's worth backing Mini to reach the finals, especially at the provided odds.
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