Can the Philippines defend their MLBB gold medal?
The answer was yes, as Sibol dispatched Indonesia, stomping them 3-1.
While many doubted Sibol’s chances with Setsuna “Akosi Dogie” Ignacio’s 10 percent claim of success, as well as some nervy moments during their previous SEA Games matchups, the Philippines withstood every challenge from the Indonesian all-star lineup.
How the Philippines secured the gold
While the previous games saw the Philippines reveal some shaky moments in teamfights, Game 1 saw them systematically dissect their foes.
With their signature Esmeralda and Baxia combo, Sibol was able to outplay their foes with their counterattacks.
There were moments when Danerie James “Wise” Del Rosario’s Baxia would charge towards the battlefield, while his teammate Dominic “Dominic” Soto would provide the follow-up damage. Both could switch their engagements when needed.
Though Indonesia had their response with their Masha, Angela, and Akai combo, Sibol assessed their movements, and prepared their assaults.
This was evident from the beginning all the way to the very end, specifically on the 27th minute, when Albert Neilsen “Alberttt” Iskandar’s Akai managed to catch two members from the Codebreakers, but was easily overwhelmed by Sibol’s counterattacking prowess, leading to their Game 1 win.
But their victory was short-lived as Indonesia managed to find alternatives in Game 2. With Rivaldi “R7” Fatah’s Dyrroth, harassing the backlines, combined with the hookshots from Calvin “Vynnn, and the burst damage from Gilang “SANZ”, the Codebreakers struggled to push forward.
SANZ was able to position his Xavier to perfection as the Philippines couldn’t pursue him. It also didn’t help that R7’s Dyrroth was constantly providing the follow-up damage, giving Indonesia the momentum in Game 2.
It seemed Indonesia could maintain their dominance as SANZ proved to be a pest together with R7 in stomping the Codebreakers.
Initially, the Philippines struggled to find SANZ, and every time he was given space, together with Calvin “CW” Winata, the Codebreakers were easily overwhelmed.
Then came the 22nd minute, where Dominic was able to spot both CW and SANZ. He immediately charged towards them, turning the tides of the battle and ultimately serving as the coup de grace for the Philippines to secure the crucial Game 3 win.
Then came Game 4, where the timing of abilities proved to be too much for Indonesia. With Wise zoning out key threats, combined with V33nus' crowd control prowess, and most importantly, Lee Howard "Owl" Gonzales' calculated entrances, the Indonesians were stomped within 10 minutes to secure Sibol the gold medal win, a perfect end to the doubts surrounding the team.
It seems 10 is now the magic number for the Codebreakers and Salic "Hadji" Imam delivered the finishing touches by calling Akosi Dogie during the post-game interview.