US, Japan and Brazil in the hunt to win overall medal count with CounterStrike, FIFA, WarCraft and StarCraft finals taking place Sunday
SINGAPORE, November 19, 2005 - It was the moment of truth today for more than 39,000 spectators at the World Cyber Games (WCG) 2005 Grand Final in Singapore with the completion of four of the eight championship matches - Warhammer, Need for Speed, Dead or Alive Ultimate and Halo 2. The day ended with Brazil leading the national ranking chart, followed closely by USA and Japan.
Dan and Tom Ryan, known as The Ogre Twins from Team 3D's Halo section, swept the competition making easy work of rematch against Canada in the Final to take the crown of world champions in Halo and a $20,000 prize purse.
"We are ecstatic. We trained really hard and were very focused on just giving our best performance," said Dan Ryan. Immediately following the victory the pair phoned back home to Ohio to share the good news with mom.
"We tried to hide from them, but they found us," said Canada's Nelson Triana, a silver medal winner in 2004.
Watch for The Ogre Twins in the coming year as they are set to follow in the steps of such established pro gamers as Jonathan "Fatal1ty" Wendell, Matt "Zyos" Leto, as well as players in Europe and Asia who made their name at the World Cyber Games before earning six figure salaries in the pro circuits.
Defending world CounterStrike champions Team3D met a tough Canadian side in the semifinal. Earlier in the day, Canada upended hometown favorites Singapore, ending a dream performance at the Grand Final. After falling behind in the early rounds of the semifinal, Team3D pulled off a trademark comeback against Canada, driving the match into overtime before booking their place in the final.
On Sunday Team3D will face Kazakhstan, a young and scrappy squad that has taken the tournament by surprise, toppling more mature teams from Germany, France and Russia en route to their showdown with Team3D.
Perhaps the biggest success story is with Dennis "Short Round" Chan, a seasoned veteran of big tournaments who has struggled to finish in the top two. Chan, who has a strong international following, had the misfortune of drawing legendary WarCraft Champion Manuel "Grubby" Schenkhuizen of the Netherlands, but hunkered down for a historical upset.
A measured Chan offered that, "I was very pleased to defeat Grubby."
He will face a tough opponent in China's Xiaofeng Li in the final on Sunday at 11:00 am.
It was a double strike for Brazil as they picked up gold and silver medals in Need for Speed.
With home-ground advantage, host city Singapore also climbed to 5th in the overall medal count after 24-year old Wilson Chia bagged a silver medal for Dead or Alive Ultimate, a great reward to vocal hometown fans. Japan's Tomoyuki Inui claimed the gold medal.
While Tomoyuki promises to spend his prize purse in heartbeat, Wilson - who noticeably suffered from stage fright before 2,500 screaming fans, will give his prize money to his elderly mother.
"I tried my best but I am still happy to come in second place. This is my first time winning in an international cyber gaming event. I am honoured to have represented my country and am grateful to all my supporters," an elated Chia said.
The theme for the 2005 Grand Final was of upsets, perhaps signaling a shakeup in the pecking order of global e-Sports, with early exists by Korea's top pro-gamer, Jihoon "Xellos" Seo.
The atmosphere has been electric and the Grand Final has proven a big favorite with the global press (see small sample of international coverage below).
Summary of medal winners to date:
Gold: Team3D(OGRES) - USA
Silver: Team_EG - Canada
Bronze: Halo1style - France
Dead or Alive Ultimate
Gold: Katsuninken (Tomoyuki Inui) - Japan
Silver: Tetra (Wilson Chia) - Singapore
Bronze: shinobi (Dongheon Han) - Korea
Need for SpeedTM : Underground 2
Gold: GearGG (Giovani Magri) - Brazil
Silver: N4_Godsmack (Danilo Barros) - Brazil
Bronze: USSR_MrKot (Konstantin Vanisov) - Russia
Gold: Kyung Hyun Ryoo (Select) - Korea
Silver: Andre Zilio (TmG_QuanChi) - Brazil
Bronze: Simon Pletzer (TmG)InSAnE) - Germany
Full results for all matches, as well as highlights, pictures and instant replay files of key games are available online at http://www.worldcybergames.com/pressinfo.
Sunday's final day of the tournament marks the climax of the WCG 2005 Grand Final, with highly-anticipated championship matches scheduled for the remaining four official games including Counter-StrikeTM: Source, FIFA Soccer 2005TM StarCraft: Brood War TM and WarCraft III: Frozen ThroneTM.
All events at the Grand Final are telecasted through MediaCorp, while HDNet has broadcast the US Final. Samsung is a worldwide sponsor of the World Cyber Games. The Grand Final is also made possible through the sponsorship support of premier sponsors Intel and Razer and official sponsors SingTel and Video Pro.
About The World Cyber Games
International Cyber Marketing (www.worldcybergames.com) is the global organizer of the World Cyber Games, the world's largest computer and video game festival, and is the licenser for all World Cyber Games interactive game tournaments to be held in about 67 countries in 2005. This year the winners of each national event series will compete for the world championship title and prizes valued at $435,000. Now in its fifth official year, the World Cyber Games has ushered in a new dimension of e-Sports, where game enthusiasts can look forward to some of the most intense and dynamic video game action by the best players on the planet.