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Doomed mission



PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF GIAN PAUL MUNSAYAC TWITTER Gian Paulo ‘Pauloxpert’ Munsayac claims that Bren Esports got tired and lazy heading into the MPL Season 8.

After seeing the behavior of his players, Bren Esports Mobile Legends analyst Gian Paulo “Pauloxpert” Munsayac instantly knew that their chances of making it to the M3 World Championship were doomed.

Pauloxpert said attitude, work ethic and hunger played a crucial role to their campaign, something that they didn’t have entering Season 8 of the Mobile Legends Professional League Philippines (MPL).

Once feared for winning MPL Season 6 and M2 World Championship early this year, Bren has been on a sharp decline. In fact, they did not even make it to the playoffs as powerhouse squads like Blacklist International and Onic PH asserted their dominance.

Angelo Kyle “Pheww” Arcangel, CJ “Ribo” Ribo, Karl Gabriel “KarlTzy” Nepomuceno, David Charles “FlapTzy” Canon and Allan “Lusty” Castromayor struggled throughout Season 8 to the point that Bren needed someone to help Francis “Duckeyyy” Glindro hone his players.

They tapped Pauloxpert to step in.

“Since Bren players have plenty of achievements, I had a lot of pressure because I could not talk to them. It was kind of awkward at first, honestly, but after a while, they were pretty welcoming. I was surprised,” Pauloxpert said.

“There are a lot of problems they were hiding from the team. I was actually surprised they opened up to me even though I am new and they did not know me too well, yet they shared their feelings between each other and coach Duckeyyy.”

The M3 World Championship is considered as the mecca of competitive Mobile Legends.

It has a massive prize pool of $800,000 — the largest in history — with only the top two teams from each MPL region around the world getting invites.

Upon arriving at Bren Esports, Pauloxpert quickly noticed that the players lack discipline — an issue that has been hurled at them since winning the M2 title.

Although he tried to keep mum over the issue, he knew right then and there that they would not qualify for the M3 in December.

“I do not want to go too deep into it, but I think most of the players of Bren kind of lost the passion and hunger to win. They got lazy. I think we need to focus on fixing that in the upcoming season,” he revealed.

“Honestly speaking, and this is just my opinion, I do have trust in my players, but I do not think we were going to get a spot in M3 with the work ethic they were showing. We needed to work harder. That is how I saw it. We just lacked discipline. Most players were late, they did not take practice time seriously, and I think we need to fix that.”

In the end, Bren fizzled out, allowing back-to-back MPL champion Blacklist and second runner-up Onic PH to secure slots in the M3.

Team captain Pheww validated Pauloxpert’s observation.

“We lost discipline while others underperformed. After our game with Echo, we spoke to each other immediately and discussed what went wrong. We were far up ahead in Game 2. We were up ahead on gold by 11,000 when they pulled a comeback,” said Pheww referring to the game that saw them lose a spot in the playoffs.

“It is sad. It hurts a lot because, once again, I have experienced not making it to the playoffs. The last time that happened to me was in Season 4. Season 8 was challenging because everybody was good unlike before. This time around you just never know who will make it to the playoffs.”

Pheww added that Bren stars badly wanted to redeem themselves in Season 8 after they got dropped in the lower bracket quarterfinals in Season 7 — only to find out that the rest of the competition had already caught up in such a short time.

“We tried our best to come back this season which is why we even managed to pull off a win streak after many losses. I want to continue playing as long as I can because I am still happy with this game,” Pheww said.

“After we lost in Season 7, I really wanted to win again but we ended up much worse this season so I am really determined to win MPL Season 9. The biggest lesson to me was that all teams got better now, we are all on a level playing field now.”