Dylan “Light” Catipon’s journey to becoming an MPL Philippines champion is an open book.
The 19-year-old roamer showed glimpses of his potential with Work Auster Force, leading the rookie-laden squad to an 8-5 regular-season record and a 5th-6th place finish in Season Seven.
When the franchise system came in the following season, the Work core that was beaming with potential was acquired by esports giant TNC which marked the organization’s entry into the mobile realm.
From playing for a start-up organization to being acquired by the most successful esports company in the country, the core was expected to come back better than ever and reach greater heights come Season Eight given the enormous amount of support now at their disposal.
Indeed, it was a season full of promise for Light and the former Work Auster Force nucleus.
However, when Season Eight finally came, things started to take an unexpected turn for the team. The players who were supposed to unleash their full potential underperformed which turned TNC’s debut in the Mobile Legends scene into a complete bust.
The embarrassing campaign which saw the team miss the playoffs and finish at the last spot led to a massive roster overhaul. All of the players and coaches, save for Daniel “SDzyz” Chu and Ben “Benthings” Maglaque – who, according to Tiebreaker Times’ sources also went through the team’s tryouts – were relieved of their respective duties.
Suddenly, the amateur team that took the league by storm and was once considered the future of Mobile Legends: Bang Bang in the Philippines disbanded after just two seasons. It was a sad end indeed as they never got to realize their full potential together.
So, when the victory screen finally flashed right before Light’s eyes after the Game Five of the grand finals match between RSG PH and Omega Esports, the first thing that came into his mind were the teammates whom he started this dream with.
“Unang pumasok sa isip ko yung past teammates ko,” said Light after RSG PH completed its dream run in the MPL Philippines Season Nine via a 4-1 grand finals win over Omega Esports.
“Kasi ‘di namin natupad yung pangarap namin together so parang dala dala ko yun at ako yung mag tutuloy sa sobrang dami kong kakampi noon. Kaya feeling ko talaga hindi ako nag iisa sa laban na ‘to. Kaya malakas talaga yung loob ko,” he explained.
The MPL PH Season Nine reigning Most Valuable Player also dedicated the championship to his former TNC teammates, saying: “Oo [dine-dedicate ko sa kanila], kasi malaki rin yung pinagsamahan namin. Pag kino-congrats nila ako tsaka ginu-good luck talagang sabi ko itutuloy ko yung pangarap natin.”
The transition from being a prodigy to a has-been, to an MVP and an MPL champion in just three seasons has been an exhausting, emotional journey for Light. And now, he’s just glad to finally see the light at the end of the tunnel.
“Yung mga grind ko na hindi ako natutulog, sinisipagan ko na akala ko walang patutunguhan, na parang hanggang dito na lang ako, then ngayon may pinatunguhan na talaga. Sabi nga ni Aqua, kapag nagsipag ka, may mararating ka talaga.”