During the pre-Champions press conference, Team Secret’s JessieVash, X10’s Crws, Crazy Raccoon’s Ade, and FULL SENSE’s PTC responded to expectations for them at the event.

VALORANT Champions is upon us, and the Asian teams at the event are a unique mix. Korea’s Vision Strikers have been marked as a possibility to win the entire tournament, while the other four rosters aren’t being thought of as much.

In the pre-Champions press conference, Esports.gg asked representatives of each of those other four teams – Thailand’s X10 CRIT and FULL SENSE, The Philippines’ Team Secret, and Japan’s Crazy Raccoon – whether they believed that being thought of as underdogs made them more dangerous.

Does being an underdog give you an advantage?

Esports.gg: All four of your teams are kind of considered underdogs in this tournament. Do you think that an advantage coming into the tournament, like when you face teams from NA and EU?

Thanamethk “Crws” Mahatthananuyut, X10 CRIT: To me, I think it does, because sometimes they just don’t really care. So we might get some freebies here and there, maybe. Yeah, it’s mostly that, kinda might change some things in the game. But not as much, though.

Crws in promotional material for Masters Reykjavik. He believes being seen as underdogs gives Asian teams certain advantages. (RIOT GAMES/Colin Young-Wolff)

Jessie “JessieVash” Cristy Cuyco, Team Secret: Yeah, actually that’s the same, like in scrims. The first day, second day, I think, we were having a hard time finding good scrims against good teams, but after playing against them, based on the result, they are the ones asking us the next day. Yeah, I think we have a few things to surprise.

Teppei “Ade” Kuno, Crazy Raccoon: Yeah, I think it gives us advantages, and we prepared a lot for this Champions, and we also had some scrims against other teams. And I want to say, to our opponents, don’t expect the same for this tournament.

While full translation wasn’t provided, Kititkawin “PTC” Rattanasukol of FULL SENSE disagreed, saying it wasn’t an advantage though he agreed with Crws on some points.

How much chance do Asian VALORANT teams have as underdogs?

Scrim success or not, advantages or not, these squads will have to be at their best to compete for the title at Champions. FULL SENSE will play in the tournament’s opening match, facing off against the deadly Vision Strikers. Crazy Raccoon will play in the second match of the event, against Brazil’s Team Vikings. X10 CRIT and Team Secret, meanwhile, begin their Champions runs against the top two teams from Masters Berlin: Envy and Gambit Esports, respectively.

Ultimately, X10 CRIT’s group looks very difficult to get out of. FULL SENSE – with VS, Cloud9 Blue, and Fnatic – also have a tough schedule, though they come into Champions as one of the most on-form teams in the world, and that could bring them success. Lastly, Crazy Raccoon and Team Secret may end up fighting each other for the second seed in Group C.

The VALORANT Champions groups. Image via Riot Games.

Once we get to the top 8 bracket stage, it’s hard to imagine any of these teams would be favourites. Maybe, though, we’ll see some shining performances in the group stage to change that.

Stay tuned to Esports.gg for the latest VALORANT news and updates, and for full coverage of Champions Berlin.


Shawn "Germanicus" Heerema

Writer of the Month: August | Twitter: @GermanicusCVIII

A writer from Niagara, Canada, Shawn covers VALORANT, League of Legends, and PUBG. He previously wrote for THESPIKE.GG and is a journalism student at Ryerson University. He has also been accredited press for Worlds 2021 and VALORANT Champions.