VCT EU P3 – Gambit wins the Challengers Playoffs EMEA
The Challengers Playoffs EMEA ended yesterday and we now know the 4 teams that qualified for the Masters 3 in Berlin: Gambit Esports, SuperMassive Blaze, Acend and G2 Esports. The tournament was finally won by Gambit Esports in a 4-map final against SuperMassive Blaze.
Results of the Challengers Playoffs EMEA
1st. Gambit Esports
2nd. SuperMassive Blaze
4th. G2 Esports
5-6th. Team Liquid
5-6th. Vodafone Giants
7-8th. Guild Esports
9-12ème. Oxygen Esports
9-12ème. FunPlus Phoenix
9-12ème. Fire Flux Esports
9-12ème. Natus Vincere
The first 4 teams of these Playoffs qualify for the Masters 3 in Berlin. Unlike the Reykjavik Masters, this time, each region will be represented by at least one team. We have G2 Esports and Acend for Europe, SuperMassive Blaze for Turkey and finally Gambit Esports for the CIS region.
Summary of the final between Gambit and SuperMassive Blaze
Gambit Esports is the top CIS team, having won a total of 4 CIS Challengers as well as the Masters 1, Last May, they came very close to qualifying for the Masters in Reykjavik but were beaten by Fnatic in the semi-finals of the Playoffs.
A few months later, it is at the top of the EMEA region and qualified for the Masters 3 in Berlin! However, Gambit Esports' journey during these Challengers Playoffs was far from easy. With the exception of their first match, the team played all their BO3 in 3 maps and their BO5 in 4 maps. They had to go through 3 lower bracket rounds before reaching the Grand Final against SuperMassive Blaze.
SuperMassive Blaze is a team that was formed shortly before the VCT Phase 3 but still won the Turkish Phase 3 Challengers 1 and thus secured a place in the EMEA Playoffs. From there, the team surprised everyone by winning all 3 matches to reach the Grand Final and thus securing their ticket to Berlin.
The Grand Final between these two teams started with an impressive 13-1 in favour of the SuperMassive Blaze on Ascent. They achieved the feat of winning 12 points in a row while the map was chosen by Gambit. The latter could only manage to get one point before the Blaze finished them off completely. Izzy, the Jett of SuperMassive Blaze, finished the map with a K/D of 3.6 and did not die once.
This heavy defeat on Ascent probably woke up Redgar and his teammates, as the second BO map, Split, was much more competitive. After going back and forth until the 20th round, it was the Russians from Gambit Esports who finally managed to win the game with a score of 13-11. Gambit was able to count on Chronicle and his Viper, which made a lightning quadrakill just before half-time.
The Gambit's revival ended the SuperMassive Blaze's hopes. The Turks totally collapsed on Bind and were already 6 points behind before they switched sides. Their two points early in their attacking phase could have put them back on their feet, but it was not to be. Gambit quickly took over and closed the map with a score of 13-5.
It all came down to the 4th BO map, Haven, chosen by SuperMassive Blaze. The Russians continued their descent into hell, being once again 6 points behind at half-time. The Russians quietly played their game and gave their opponents no chance, especially nAts who ended the game with a 20/6/4 KDA with Cypher.
Gambit Esport won the Grand Final with a score of 3 to 1. They win the cash prize of 32 500€ and a better seed for the Berlin Masters!
The course of other teams
Acend was the third team to qualify for the Masters 3, making it all the way to the final of the upper bracket. They then fell to the next big finalists of the tournament: SuperMassive Blaze and Gambit Esports.
The G2 Esports finally get a good result in the VCT competitions! Thanks to their new roster, the team managed to qualify for Berlin by grabbing the 4th and last available slot despite losing the lower bracket semi-final to Gambit Esports.
This time, Team Liquid will not be present for the International Masters. The team that finished 4th in Reykjavik survived for a long time in the lower bracket after their opening loss to Natus Vincere. They were one map away from qualifying for Berlin, but lost to Gambit Esports.
Sent into the lower bracket by OXygen Esports at the start, the Vodafone Giants managed to defeat Natus Vincere and then Guild Esports. Like Team Liquid, they then failed to qualify for the Masters 3 by failing to G2 Esports.
Beaten by Guild Esports in the round of 16, forZe then struggled for a while in the lower bracket, but could do nothing against Team Liquid who eliminated them with a score of 2-0.
After being sent to the lower bracket in the quarter finals by the eventual winners, Guild Esports defeated Fire Flux Esports by a wide margin and then lost to Vodafone Giants, finishing in 7-8th place.
Things have been very complicated for Oxygen Esports during this tournament. After defeating the Vodafone Giants, they were eliminated by losing maps such as 13-2 on Icebox against G2, then 13-1 and 13-3 against Team Liquid.
The FunPlus Phoenix started the tournament on a high note by beating Fire Flux Esports 2-0, but then went on to lose to SuperMassive Blaze and forZe. Fun fact: the game on Bind against forZe ended in favour of the Russian with a score of 24-22!
The Fire Flux Esports didn't show much during these Playoffs and lost their maps, including a clear 13-0 on Ascent against Guild Esports.
Natus Vincere had impressed at the start of the Playoffs by beating Team Liquid 2-1, but were then knocked out of the tournament in two games, against Acend and then Vodafone Giants.