By TENAJH SWEETING
Tribune Sports Reporter
JOHNATHON Lucius will advance to the next level after collecting wins in the group stage of the International Esports Federation’s (IESF) World Esports Championship this past weekend.
The 25-year-old was in action in Romania where he played against competitors from Norway, Iraq, Vietnam and Greece in best-of-three competition for Tekken 7.
After being eliminated from the initial round at the 2022 World Esports Championship, Lucius was elated to take the next step this year.
“It feels amazing after the results I had last year, whereas I was eliminated early in the competition,” he said.
The 2022 national Tekken champion went up against Norway first on Saturday. He won the match 2-1. He said although things were very close in the beginning, in the final match it became one-sided and he was able to take advantage of his opponent. Lucius once again collected another win this time against Iraq 2-0. Despite the score, the 25-year-old felt it was both opponents trying to gain the edge but in the end he was able to win via a knockout in the final match.
The Tekken 7 gamer dropped his final two matches against Vietnam and Greece. The Bahamas lost 0-2 to Vietnam and fell 1-2 to Greece.
He talked about the tough losses.
“My third match was against Vietnam where I lost 0-2 against him. It was a bit disappointing but it didn’t stop me in the tournament,” he said.
The World Esports Championship competitor said he felt he had control of the outcome against Greece initially but, in the end, his opponent was the much better player in the match.
After wrapping up the round with six points in total to place The Bahamas in the bracket’s top three, Lucius will prepare to face Peru’s Sergie Mazter in the playoffs.
The Bahamas’ representative will have his hands full as Mazter placed second in the 2022 Tekken World Tour in the South America Regionals. And Mazter was the 2021 Evolution Championship Series (Online) LATAM South champion and is considered the favourite in the next round.
Although it is a tough opponent on paper, Lucius is prepared for the match on Friday.
“Peru’s representative, Sergie Mazter, is a world-class player. He and I played against each other in some casual matches whereas he beat me but I am confident in myself that whether I win or lose, I am going to put on a performance to show everyone that I am ready,” he said.
With Esports now getting more exposure among Bahamians at this stage, the 25-year-old described the feeling as unreal to know a game he played for more than two decades has put him in this position.
“If you would tell me that I would be an Esports player I would not believe it…seeing myself at this stage in my life has been special to me because without this game I do not think I would be doing Esports,” the gamer said.
Lucius will take on Peru this Friday at 4am and, if successful, will face Saudi Arabia at 4:20am.