By Luis Canseco
The Mexico City Regional Championships start on Saturday, and this could be the last chance for many players to get the remaining championship points they need to qualify for the 2017 World Championships. This regional is also one of only three in Latin America, and is one of the few opportunities for the world at large to see the skill of the region’s players.
Due to being the first regional in the northern part of the LATAM region, many notable players from Costa Rica, Guatemala, El Salvador and, of course, Mexico are expected to attend. As of today, only one player in the top eight of the region, René Alvarenga of El Salvador, is expected to attend.
However, a large number of accomplished players from Costa Rica are expected to attend, including Costa Rican Open Champion David Rodriguez (Davidness) and runner up Luis Canseco (Chaivon). Other players include members of the LATAM North World Cup of VGC team hosted by Nugget Bridge last season, such as Max Morales (MAX_LJCR) and Esteban Hernandez (Haxnandez). The later is already qualified for Anaheim, but is looking to improve his standing and break into the top eight of the region.
As for the local, Mexican community, the only player currently qualified for Worlds is Isra Suaste (IsraVGC), who will look for a strong follow up to his top 16 finish at the LATAM International Championships. Then there is Christian Ramirez (Ewokpadawan) and Nelson Ocampo (Cranidactyl), who are both worth watching. The former has been posting strong results at the most recent Mid-Season Showdowns in his area, and the latter had a strong finish at the Anaheim Regional Championships. As for lesser-known favorites, expect potential upsets from Lizandro Gonzalez (Gonsser), Abraham Orta (Abby) and Kenneth Gamboa (KennethVGC).
Granted, due to the lack of major tournaments in the region, most players have yet to play in a regional event this season, and the CP rankings reflect that. Despite there only being nine players above the 300 mark from Costa Rica, El Salvador, Mexico and Guatemala, many of these players are expected to shoot up the rankings due to the upcoming special events near the end of the month. The point is: don’t let low CP numbers trick you into thinking the competition in Mexico City won’t be tough.
As for who will win it all, it depends on your perspective. It’s impossible to ignore the great shape Davidness is in, making him the smart bet to end up champion. That being said, KennethVGC, as a first year master, could easily surprise the field by taking the trophy home.
Regarding the overall expected difficulty of the event, expect three-Hawluchas-and-one-Ludicolo out of five mons. The area can be difficult to win in on its own, and there are plenty of other talented players flying in from other countries. That, and there’s always at least one swift-swimmer out there.
The tournament will be streamed on Pokemex’s Twitch channel and commentated by Chuppa Cross IV and Erik Vazquez Abarca (Poptomato). Keep an eye on Trainer Tower’s twitter feed for information about the exact starting time.