Reading Time:

Published: February 20, 2023

Written by: Isabella Aslam

  • The Dominican player dominated his opponents throughout the entire event
  • He went up against Chinese youngster Zhen in the finals, beating him 3-1 in both sets
  • This is MenaRD’s second Capcom Cup win, the first one being in 2017

History was written at the Capcom Cup today as Saul Leonardo “MenaRD” Mena II became the first player to be crowned two-time champion. 

MenaRD Wins Capcom Cup

Following restrictions during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Capcom Cup finally returned after a three-year-long break. The event saw one man dominate everyone else to become champion for the second time, signing himself in history as the first player to win the tournament twice. 

Saul Leonardo “MenaRD” Mena II emerged victorious from the event, destroying many of the top Street Fighter V players in the process. The Dominican player went up against China’s SFV rising star Zhen “Rou” Kuang in the finals, defeating him two times in a row to seal the deal, taking both sets 3-1. 

Perhaps it should not be surprising that Mena walked away with the trophy and $120 000 as he has been a dominant force in competitive SFV for years. The player had already won the Capcom Cup in 2017 and his experience also came useful in this event. Throughout his entire run, Mena never lost more than a single game to any of his opponents. During the event, Mena defeated the likes of Takamura, EndingWalker, and Zhen twice in the final bracket.

“The only shout-out I would like to give is to the fighting game community,” MenaRD said in a short speech after he won. “All of y’all are my family. When I won the first [Capcom Cup] I didn’t really know anybody. I was all about the [Dominican Republic] but now it’s all about y’all now. It’s all about the FGC. Thank you so much.”

Whom Did Mena Fight in the Final?

It is also important to take a look at MenaRD’s opponents as they are as interesting as the champion. Mena’s finals adversary, Zhen, is perhaps somewhat unknown in the SFV community as he comes from China and has not attended global events. However, the young player grabbed everyone’s attention when he beat notable players such as Gachikun, Shuto, and Kichipa to qualify for Capcom Cup out of the LCQ.

Zhen’s popularity only grew when he took the top seed in a group containing Momochi and Big Bird. The Chinese player would go on to beat down Evo 2022 champion Kawano and veteran AngryBird. What cemented Zhen’s place in the Capcom Cup’s grand finals was his victory over iDom, who was the winner of the 2019 event, and technically the defending champion due to all the cancellations in the last three years. Street Fighter VI’s launch on the horizon, SFV will be on its way out soon as Capcom confirmed Capcom Pro Tour 2023 will be played with a hybrid event circuit entirely on the new game. But it has to be said that MenaRD’s victory was a fitting end to SFV.

Check out Bitcasino for the best bonuses

From our 5 star review…

“In fact, we would argue that Bitcasino’s esports product is one of the best we have experienced. It’s simple, clear-cut, and offers a variety of products and options that other platforms are failing to deliver on.”