Work and fight hard, and you’ll eventually be the world’s best. That’s what Nopparut Book Hempamorn, one of Southeast Asia’s top Tekken 7 players, did time and again, proving himself to the world.
Just recently, the Thailand Iron Fist warrior placed first in a gruelling top 8 in EVO Japan 2020’s Tekken 7 tournament. Granted, this bout isn’t part of the Bandai Namco-sanctioned Tekken World Tour, but it was still a landmark victory for the Thai fighter.
As strong as his grand finals opponent Mikio is with his punishes and defense via his main Julia, he still came out short.
We do need to point out the Asian elephant in the room: the reason it’s a tense top 8 is because 7 of the players (including Book) were using Season 3’s latest top tier addition to the roster: Wing Chun user Leroy Smith.
For those not well-versed with Tekken 7 lately, Leroy Smith has a number of great moves to put him in the top spot. He has counters, he has long-ranged attacks, and he can get huge damage off of easy and light confirms in a game where jabs are paramount to winning matches & footsie games.
Suffice to say, he’s a handful to deal with even with the world’s finest.
It’s still a little early and people don’t know fully know the matchup against the new guy just yet. And I’m not saying Book’s victory isn’t well-earned, far from it. He deserves it since his big win in last year’s SEA Games Esports Tekken 7 bout; the pro has been training hard for a long while since Tekken 7’s arcade debut.
But when you have the world’s best Tekken 7 players & commentators voicing this out on the public space…
Last year evo japan champion
Lost to leroy out
Last year evo japan 2nd
Lost to leroy out
Last year evo japan 3rd
Lost to leroy out pic.twitter.com/WoYi4wyE4c
— AMPLFY | Rangchu (@rangchu123) January 25, 2020
Winning streaks of Tekken:
2017 JDCR = Dragnov
2018 Knee = Steve (Mostly)
Early 2019 Ash = Kazumi & Geese
Late 2019 Awais & Atif = Akuma
2020 = Leroy
All in all, the stronger the character; the better chances of winning. So, It's basically about the game design.
— vSlash | RB | Arslan Ash (@ArslanAsh95) January 25, 2020
…perhaps Bandai Namco may need to start doing some tweaks to its meal ticket post-EVO Japan 2020.
Here is the full top 8 for EVO Japan 2020’s Tekken 7 tournament.
1. Talon|Book (Leroy)
2. ITO|Mikio (Julia)
3. COOASGAMES|Noroma (Leroy, Steve)
4. EQNX|Ulsan (Kazumi, Bob, Leroy)
5. Liquid|Gen (Leroy, Shaheen)
5. THY|Chikurin (Leroy)
7. Masa (Leroy)
7. Zeugal (Leroy)