Underdogs Vortex CGO surprised the EMEA region with a narrow ALGS Pro League win

Vortex CGO have breathed life into a potential late run for a LAN spot with an ALGS Pro League victory. The all-French roster pipped Element 6 to the top spot by a single point, and have leaped from the relegation zone to the cusp of the top ten.

Vortex CGO find themselves nine points behind SAF in tenth.

Elsewhere, Element 6 also found much needed results. They will be pleased with their performance, despite narrowly missing out on first place.

Surprise win for Vortex VCGO

No one had really been discussing Vortex VCGO before the days action. While they had only played three match days due to the suspended week, they languished in 24th. Perhaps relegation was not on the cards, but neither was a serious push for automatic LAN qualification either.

You would be forgiven for not being familiar with this roster, even if you follow the ALGS Pro League closely. Rémi-Philippe "Ye Qiu" Giraut, Geoffrey "rowbbeN" and Anthony "Vooshi" Audry are recent additions to Vortex CGO, but previously competed under the name of SPS. They qualified for the Pro League through the Challenger Circuit, and were a very steady and consistent team.

Vortex CGO Challenger Circuit Placement

SPS weren't competing together across the entire Challenger Circuit, rowbbeN was competing alongside a different roster, but joined up with Vooshi and Ye Qiu before the Pro League Qualifier. However, both sections of this team were performing very similarly. Steady, consistent but not incredibly inspiring. They never won a Challenger Circuit tournament, but consistently made the finals and placed nicely in the Pro League qualifier taking 6th.

As a result, they have flown largely under the radar. Fans and pundits alike tend to focus on the flashy teams who have big game potential and can push boundaries and records.

Vortex CGO have been quietly working, addressing their weaknesses and adapting to the ALGS Pro League level.

Ye Qiu "It's just insane for us"

Speaking to the ALGS Pro League broadcast, Ye Qiu revealed how excited this squad was to sneak this victory.

"It's just insane for us. It's the first time we are first in Pro League!"

When asked how much work has gone into this performance, Ye Qiu added:

"I make so many plans, when we need to rotate, where we need to play. So much work"

This has been a great strategy for Vortex CGO. Adapting to the entirely different standard of gameplay from the Challenger Circuit can be tough, but their steady playstyle was in some ways much more suited to this level than some of the other promoted teams.

Despite facing off against some of the best players in the world, Vortex CGO's IGL Yo Qui was adamant that they are here to play. He was asked what he liked the most about his team.

"The team play, the level [of our play]. Whenever we have good mindsets, we know we can make the level. When we have good mindset, we can destroy anyone."

The question for Ye Qiu and Vortex CGO is if they can keep momentum going and make a late run for the automatic LAN qualification spots. Top nine, or top ten depending on the Regional Finals winner will qualify for the Split 2 Playoffs in London.

Element 6 boost LAN chances

Despite being narrowly beaten by Vortex CGO, Element 6 got some much needed points on the board towards the overall standings.

They have had a disrupted ALGS Pro League campaign so far. IGL Kswinnie had to swap to controller due to sponsor requirements, they then lost experienced teammate Graceful, and have struggled to settle on a new third player. They announced MgClutch as their new third, but seemed to cool on the idea after a only a couple of initial scrim sessions. This presented an opportunity for young Spaniard Kind4, who excelled on his ALGS Pro League debut today.

Element 6 Slayers (Photo EA/Joe Brady)
Element 6 Slayers (Photo EA/Joe Brady)

The debutant picked up six kills across the six games, but was part of an E6 roster that had an excellent showing on Worlds Edge, with back to back victories.

Element 6's gameplan has evolved over the split. They adopted Caustic on Storm Point today, which was a clear indication of a major shift in strategy. E6 have never really settled on a solid macro strategy across the split, and have been very flexible in their legend selections.

They have struggled to really establish themselves in the LAN qualification race, and still have some work to do to ensure that they can avoid needing a win in the Regional Finals.

LAN qualifiers as it stands

  • Alliance - 93
  • Fire Beavers - 88
  • Vexed Gaming - 86
  • KCP - 84
  • Acend - 72
  • JLingz - 70*
  • Horizon Union - 64
  • 2R1C - 60
  • Element 6 - 58*
  • SAF Esports - 55

Both JLingz and Element 6 have played one less gameday than the teams around them, which gives them a great opportunity next weekend to advance several places. SAF Esports would be a LAN qualifier if a team above them won the Regional Finals.

Perhaps the most notable team not in the top ten is Aurora, they are sat all the way down in 19th. The former Pro League champions have struggled all split and will be relying on the Regional Finals if they are to head to London this summer.

For full ALGS Pro League results, check out our ALGS Score hub here.

Stay tuned to esports.gg for more ALGS coverage and esports news.

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