Group stage begins - Copenhagen Masters 2

The group stage of the Copenhagen Masters 2, the second international LAN of the year started on Sunday. The competition got off to a flying start. The two finalists of the Reykjavik Masters, OpTic Gaming and LOUD fell in turn.

The Copenhagen Masters 2 is the second most important event of the VCT 2022. Just like during the the Reykjavik Masters 1, the 12 best teams in the world have qualified and will fight for the trophy. Fnatic, XSET, Paper Rex and Leviatán, the 4 top teams, have automatically joined the playoffs. The other rosters, divided into 2 groups, compete to reach the finals.

DRX wins against Northeption (Group B)

DRX and Northeption opened the hostilities. If Northeption, a young Japanese team, was making its first appearance on the international scene, the Koreans of DRX, formerly Vision Strikers, were already well experienced in high-level competition. This difference probably played in DRX's favour in this first match.

On Ascent, on the first map of this match, Northeption's challengers gave their all to win rounds and make kills. For example, the superb peek of Meteor on Rb. However, the DRX were determined to take the point and set the pace throughout the match. In total, the Japanese won 4 successive rounds on Attack, and 4 successive rounds on Defence, before losing 8-13.

Bind was the scene of a real butchery. The DRX gave their opponents no chance. In the Attack, they only conceded the bonus round. Carried by MaKo, the Korean team flew to victory by chaining the next 11 rounds. The match ended with a score of 13-1.

LOUD falls to KRU Esports (Group A)

In contrast to the previous match, the match between LOUD and KRU Esports was more competitive. Both South American teams are among the best in their respective regions. This is proven by the fact that LOUD did not lose a single match during the Challengers 2 in Brazil, winning the 16 maps on which they played. The KRU players, who are now used to international LANs, only lost the final match of the LATAM Challengers to the Leviátans. The KRU players, who are now used to international LANs, only conceded the match of the LATAM Challengers Final to the Leviátans. It took three maps to separate these two talented teams.

It all started on Fracture, LOUD's chosen card. With 71% of victories, against only 33%, LOUD started as favourites. Although they didn't break the statistics, the victory was not easy to take. At the changeover, they were leading 8-4, but by the 20th round, the two teams were tied. Despite the KRU's comeback, LOUD did not give up and managed to win the three rounds they needed to win, 13-10, on this first map.

On Haven, the two teams had a similar winning percentage. Nevertheless, in recent matches KRU Esports has failed several times on this map. Despite this fact, the LATAM players decided to fight on this map once again, a choice that worked in their favour! With a rather strong Attack, they managed to take the lead at the changeover, leading 7-5. Keznit, was determined to win the match with his Raze. In the 17th round, he made a superb ace, and gave his team an extra round. Despite 3 successive losses after this crazy action, the KRU finally won 13-9.

The outcome of the match was decided on Icebox, a map on which both rosters have shown their talent in the past. In the first phase, neither LOUD nor KRU could really get the upper hand. In the last round, Mazino also had an ace in this match, allowing his team to reach 5-7 at the changeover.

LOUD didn't hold on to their slight lead for long, as by the end of the 14th round, the two teams were tied. By winning the bonus round, LOUD managed to regain the upper hand, and then went on to win two more. Unfortunately, these were the team's last victories in this match. The KRU Esports players stopped their opponents' Momentum in its tracks. Thanks to 6 successive victorious rounds, the team snatched victory 13 to 10.

Guild Esports win (Group A)

The third and final match of the first day saw Guild Esports and OpTic Gaming face off. During this match, the winners of the Masters 1 have faced Leo, a Guild Esports player, determined to take them down.

From the first round of the match, Guild Esports set the tone. This winning round, on Icebox, was only the first in a series of 7 consecutive wins. Despite this, OpTic managed to win 4 rounds in the first phase to limit the damage. At the changeover, Guild Esports managed, again, to win the first three rounds. With a score of 11-4, they held a comfortable lead, and victory was within reach. But a Valorant match is never over. Afterwards, OpTic proved to be punishing and won 5 more rounds. The tension rose again, when Guild took round 21. With 1 round to go, the pressure didn't get to OpTic though, as they managed to put another 2 rounds back together. By round 23, the two teams were neck and neck, 12-11. OpTic's hopes were dashed, as the Guild finally managed to close out this first card, 13-11.

The first phase on Split had an air of déjà vu. Again Guild Esports won the pistol-round, then dominated the first 7 rounds. Finally, the same situation as on the previous map appears, and Guild wins its Defence phase, 8-4.

Despite this new delay, OpTic Gaming was not done yet. In turn, they proved to be extremely solid in Defence, and conceded only 4 rounds. By the 24th round, the two teams were perfectly even. During the extra time, the Guild players were the most efficient. After 1h08 of play, they end up winning 16 à 14.

The next match will be between FunPlus Phoenix and Xerxia Esports, from group B. This match will determine which team will face DRX. In other news, Guild Esports and KRU Esports advance up the tournament tree with their respective wins. Both teams will face each other in the evening, while OpTic and LOUD will have to wait until 12th July for their last chance match.

To follow the rest of the group stage matches at the Copenhagen Masters 2, go to official Twitch channel of Valorant.