Syed “Sumail” Hassan has looked like his old self during his cameo as a Team Liquid stand-in. While unlikely to stay long term, we take a look at his impact in their run so far in the DPC.
Sumail shows he's still got it live on the DPC
Almost two weeks ago, Team Liquid announced the temporary departure of offlaner, Boxi from roster. Boxi is taking a step back in order to handle things going on in his family life. Even more shocking perhaps, was who Liquid would be using as a stand in for what sounded like the rest of the DPC: 22-year-old TI winner Sumail.
His last return wasn't as emphatic
The last time Sumail played professionally was back in December, when he played on a roster with old Virtus Pro members on a stack called Just Error. They had incredibly bad results and disbanded after the Epicenter tournament.
With a very strong language barrier between Sumail and the rest of his teammates, it made every game the team played look like a struggle and in the end, Sumail decided to take his chances and take a step back. These past two series, however, have seemingly proved that Sumail is still ready to kick some butt, even in the hyper competitive Western European DPC.
“Man I was just sitting at home, it was too much. I wanted something to happen, and now I got the chance. [I’m] pretty happy to be back."
To hear Sumail tell it, he is glad to be back: “Man I was just sitting at home, it was too much. I wanted something to happen, and now I got the chance. [I’m] pretty happy to be back."
Liquid look strong with Sumail in the team
It looks like Liquid is happy to have him back as well with them going 2-0 in their series playing with him so far, against Brame and Hellbear Smashers. Sumail also wouldn’t claim the title of “best midlaner in the world” even when pressed by analyst Kyle: “there’ s always something to learn” he said. Sadly, we’ve only gotten to see Sumail on 3 different heroes.
The good news is that one of those heroes was his signature Leshrac, which he worked wonders on the midlane with, making clutch ganks to turn around team fights and turning those kills into successful tower pressure. Though losing the second game in the Brame series, Sumail came back with an exquisite game on Puck going 15 and 0 and shutting down practically every move Brame tried to make.
Sumail pulls out the Leshrac for Hellbear Smashers
Sumail looked even more dominant in the series against Hellbear Smashers. In the first game, Sumail pumped out the most damage across both teams as Leshrac and was practically unkillable, despite a funny skirmish with Rasmus on Axe in the midgame.
Sumail's 16-1 Windranger runs circles around Hellbear Smashers
In the second game, he played Windranger and made so many clutch shackle shots that locked down the tanky and elusive nature of the Hellbear draft. The output of damage also ended up securing many pickoffs that began to add up over time, with Sumail finishing 16 and 1 by the end of the game.
Blitz: A great stand-in but Boxi's place not under threat
Sumail appears to still be in fighting form despite the long break from playing. According to Qoijva he’s fitting in with the team very well, and even leading some overviews and analysis of past matches. It appears as though it’s likely that Sumail will be staying with Liquid for the rest of the tournament, but according to Blitz, it doesn’t look like he’ll have a permanent spot.
Blitz came out with full support of Boxi, saying he would always have a spot on the team, even if Liquid did well with Sumail. “You can’t go around saying your team is like a family, if you don’t have their back when times are rough," salid Blitz, Team Liquid's coach.
An admirable and moving sentiment that did also extend to how he felt about having Sumail on the team. Blitz praised Sumail’s work ethic and what he has been adding to the team so far.
For Liquid’s sake, let’s hope the trend continues as they are now 3-1 in the DPC. The real test will most likely come against some of the tougher teams they have yet to face.