5 APAC Valorant Players Who Didn’t Make It To Franchise

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From a rough start in Stage 2 of the Valorant Champions Tour: Masters Reykjavik 2021 to Paper Rex winning almost everything at the Copenhagen Masters in 2022, the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region has seen a massive improvement in Valorant professional scene.

There has been a significant increase in the number of skilled players from the region, with some of them now being recognized as top competitors in the Valorant esports scene. However, due to rostermania, not all players may get the chance to perform on stage anytime soon. APAC is the only region with all rosters announced so far.

Here’s a list of five APAC players who didn’t make it to the franchise.


5 APAC Valorant Pros Who Won’t Play For A Franchise Organization In The 2023 VCT ​​Season

1) Scary

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Nutchapon’Scary‘Matarat is an esports player from Thailand who currently plays for the BLEED team and has filled the role of controller for his team. Its journey started with X10 Esports where they dominated the APAC region but had a disappointing run at the first international LAN VCT in Reykjavik.

They were able to qualify for the VCT Champions 2021 playoffs by defeating Envy (now OptiC Gaming) but were unfortunately eliminated in the playoffs. The core team then played under the XERXIA Esports organization and were able to achieve somewhat similar results.

When the franchise was announced, Scary decided to leave his main team and join BLEED who failed to make the switch.


2) Lakia

KimLakia‘Jong-min is a South Korean esports player who currently plays for the DAMWON Gaming team. Lakia primarily filled the role of Initiator but also played Duelist Raze when needed.

Lakia caused quite a stir on the Valorant esports scene during his first international LAN in Reykjavik (2021), with his team NUTURN finishing third in the event. At one time, Lakia was considered one of the best Sova players in the world.

He was later chosen by Korea’s top team Vision Strikers (now DRX) as their 6th man, but only played a few games. Eventually he parted ways with them and headed to DAMWON Gaming but did not reach the franchise.


3) ZmjjKK

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Yongkang’ZmjjKK‘Zheng is a Chinese esports player who plays for the EDward Gaming team. ZmjjKK filled the role of Duelist for his team but also played the Sentinel “Chamber”.

In China’s first international debut, ZmjjKK and his team destroyed everyone in Champions Tour East Asia: Last Chance Qualifiers without dropping a single card before qualifying for VCT Champions Istanbul.

Despite their disappointing run in Champions 2022 Istanbul, ZmjjKK put insane numbers on the scoreboard and were able to impress the world with their insane chamber games. Unfortunately, Edward Gaming failed to become a franchisee.


4) Rabbit

Chae ‘Bunny’ Joon-hyuk is a South Korean esports player who played for F4Q. Bunny acted as a primary duelist, but also featured as a Sova initiator when needed. F4Q seemingly appeared out of nowhere to become one of Korea’s top teams, second only to Vision Strikers.

They then qualified for the VCT Stage 3: Masters Berlin but were eliminated in the group stage. Bunny, however, impressed many viewers with his double Shotgun satchel. To shave to play. F4Q then disbanded in 2021, leaving Bunny as a free agent.


5) Surfing

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Thanachart ‘Surf’ Rungapajaratkul is a Thai esports player who plays for XERXIA Esports, filling the role of a primary duelist and sentry chamber if needed.

Surf’s journey began when XERXIA player Patiphan decided to retire from Valorant and move to Overwatch. Surf was brought to take the latter’s place and despite initial difficulties, he was then able to find his place.

Surf has performed on the international stage and proven to be a force to be reckoned with. Unfortunately, XERXIA Esports did not reach the franchise.


APAC’s Valorant roster has been both wild and calm. We’ve seen teams like Global Esports get an import, while others like ZETA DIVISION, Paper Rex, and DRX decided to stick with the core roster. It will be interesting to see what the APAC competition will look like after the changes.

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Edited by Dinesh Renthlei

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