DRX To Field Challengers Squad Due To COVID

DRX To Field Challengers Squad Due To COVID

Korean League of Legends team, DRX, will be forced to field its LCK Challengers squads for the upcoming LoL Korea Championship (LCK) matches. The news comes as a result of positive COVID-19 cases within the primary lineup.

A Massive Setback

DRX reported positive COVID cases within its primary LoL esports lineup last week when it was revealed Kim “Zeka” Geon-woo has tested positive for the virus. Shortly after, DRX announced Taeyoon, and Cho “BeryL” Geon-hee, Hong “Syosik” Chang-hyeon, and Hwang “Kingen” Seong-hoon have all also tested positive, leaving the team with massive gaps in its LCK roster.

Since the LCK is currently played on LAN at LoL Park in Seoul, the infected players wouldn’t be able to attend the upcoming matches. Unfortunately, the current LCK rules do not allow players to play online, putting DRX in an unenviable position.

And as per league rules, the team needs to field replacement players. That essentially meant that DRX would have to field its academy roster, which was confirmed on Tuesday, February 8.

Having to field its secondary lineup puts DRX even further behind what the Korean esports organization was hoping to achieve this season. The team got off to a shaky start to the season, winning only half of their games.

Still, there was a light at the end of the tunnel ahead of the league break. DRX lost their opening three bouts against Liiv SANDBOX, Gen.G, and T1 but found some traction later on.

Through Weeks 2 and 3, DRX found some success and picked up three wins against Kwangdong Freecs, Fredit BRION, and Nongshim RedForce. With that, DRX got back on track to compete for a playoffs berth, but as per recent reports, things came crashing down.

A Tough Challenge For The Academy Team

Since DRX are unable to field its main lineup, the Korean LoL esports team will continue with the DRX Challengers roster. And while DRX already had to face two of the best LCK teams in the season’s opening weeks, things won’t get much easier for the youngsters.

DRX Challengers squad will have to first face against KT Rolster on Wednesday, February 9, and Hanwha Life on Friday. And if that’s not enough, the roster will have to compete in two leagues at once.

Due to the league’s scheduling, the DRX academy lineup will have to play for five consecutive days. First, they’ll need to play two games on February 7 and 8 in the LCK Challengers, then face off against KT Rolster on 9th, play another match in the Challengers on February 10, and Hanwha Life in the LCK on Friday.

The demanding schedule and tougher opponents wouldn’t be that big of an issue for most other teams. However, DRX Challengers are 1-11 in the LCK CL, so it will be interesting to see how they will perform at the highest level.

Unfortunately, it’s fair to doubt their chances to make a splash. Not only are DRX Challengers one of the worst teams in the LCK CL, but they’re now set to play in one of the toughest LoL esports leagues in the world.

DRX Challenger Roster:

  • Song “Clear” Hyeon-min – top
  • Lee “Peach” Min-gyu – jungler
  • Song “SeTab” Kyeong-jin – mid
  • Son “Pleata” Min-woo – ADC
  • Yoon “Jun” Se-jun – support

Of the five players, four have only recently joined the team. Jun and SeTab both joined DRX in December, while Clear and Peach signed their contracts in January. Pleata is the only player on the team who has been with DRX since 2021, joining the roster in July.