This past weekend, Utah’s annual tournament, Crown the Third, hosted 421 players from across the globe, including some of Mexico and Japan’s finest. Despite the tournaments being stacked with a multitude of top-20 players and previous winners, R.O.B. main Zomba managed to capture his first-ever major tournament win without losing any sets.
It was smooth sailing for the tournament’s top seeds Saturday — major upsets were scarce and most players advanced as they were projected to. Heading into Sunday with 64 players remaining, it wouldn’t have been foolish to think the final day of Crown the Third would have been as tame as the day prior.
That notion went out the window just an hour into Sunday’s action; Sparg0, the top seed in the tournament and the No. 1 player in the world, was upset and sent to the loser’s bracket by the 16th-seed Wolf main, Jakal.
Jakal was the epitome of consistency this weekend as airtight combos and hard punishes led to his second-place finish, upsetting third-seed MkLeo and reverse sweeping both eighth-seed Steve main Onin and fifth-seed Japanese player Shuton along the way.
Alas, Jakal met his match in the Grand Finals with his Tri-State mate, Zomba. Without dropping any sets, the best R.O.B. in the world tore through the tournament, defeating sixth-seed Sonix and Shuton, reverse sweeping MkLeo and beating second-seed Tweek with an emphatic three-stock in game five before finishing off Jakal.
Zomba had achieved multiple top-eight finishes at past tournaments but was never able to finish it off, only getting as close as second place. This time around, he wouldn’t let the opportunity slip away. With a JV three-stock in game four, Zomba secured his first major tournament win, making him the first solo R.O.B. main to win a major tournament.
The most exciting set of the tournament didn’t even occur in the top eight. With Sparg0 and MkLeo both losing prior to the quarterfinals, the anticipated matchup between the world’s new No. 1 player and the perennial No. 1 player was played well before grand finals, instead for a spot in top eight on the line.
After losing the first two games, MkLeo put his Byleth on the sidelines and brought out his signature pick in Joker — with perfect execution, Leo completed a reverse 3-0 in classic style. Sparg0’s switch to Pyra/Mythra in game five wasn’t enough as the current No. 1 missed the top eight after winning five tournaments in a row.
Mkleo ended up bowing out at fifth-place alongside his fellow Luminosity Gaming teammate, second-seed Tweek. Despite rumors of Tweek beginning to experiment with new characters on the tournament stage, the tried and true Diddy Kong was still his character of choice this weekend, only switching to Sephiroth against Onin’s Steve.
Other notable players that placed outside the top eight included sixth-seed Sonix, the Japanese pair of Pac-Man main Tea and Sonic main KEN and fourth-seed Fox main Light. Tea and Light were both upset by another surprise entry into top eight: 17th-seed Palutena main, Chase.
After losing early Sunday to Jakal, Chase won five straight sets in the loser’s brackets, including wins against Tea and Light, to make it to top eight. Despite losing to Onin and finishing in seventh place, Chase’s performance boosts his argument for being the best Palutena player in the world.
Japan’s results were carried this weekend by Shuton’s third-place finish, in which he defeated Snake main ApolloKage, Light and Jakal thanks to his excellent co-pairing of Pyra/Mythra and Olimar. The aforementioned Onin’s fourth-place finish was a return to form for the Steve main, coming off of a four-month hiatus from major tournaments.
As the first supermajor to kick off the summer months, Crown the Third produced results that are sure to shake up the rankings. If this weekend was any indication of the exciting matchups and placings that are to come from tournaments over the next few months, then all that’s left for spectators is to sit back and enjoy the show.