Zywoo and Misutaa shine as Vitality crush Virtus.Pro in the IEM Summer Playoffs. They will meet OG in their next series as the fight for a chance to reach the grand finals.

The first quarterfinals match at the IEM Summer 2021 saw Team Vitality crush Virtus.Pro and send them packing. It was an exciting moment for French CS:GO fans to watch the strongest French team reach the top four of a big event once more.

Kévin "⁠misutaaa⁠" Rabier and Mathieu "⁠ZywOo⁠" Herbaut were the stars for Vitality in the quarterfinals. The two maps of the series were Inferno and Vertigo. While Virtus.Pro chose Inferno, Vitality went with Vertigo as their map of choice. In case a third map was necessary, the two teams would have battled it out on Overpass. 

Inferno: The Zyw0o and Misutaaa show

Despite being Virtus.Pro’s pick, Vitality had a strong start to the map. Zyw0o stamped his name on the scoreboard with four USP-S kills on the B bombsite. 

Virtus.Pro failed to find any foothold into the bombsites, as Vitality’s players showed a mixture of aggression and caution to fend off the attackers. Vitality finished Inferno first half with a 9-6 score, but the team looked much more dominant than the score suggests. 

When the teams switched sides, unfortunately for CIS fans, Virtus.Pro’s defense was simply not on the same level as that of Vitality. Inferno was Virtus.Pro’s map choice and possibly the best chance for the CIS team. When Vitality won Inferno with a 16-10 score, VP’s chances of making a comeback looked slim.

Vertigo: Vitality counters Virtus.Pro in the map pick

The French roster has been practising on Vertigo for quite some time. However, they do not have the necessary wins to show for themselves. Despite their practice and low win-rate, Vitality’s players recognized that Virtus.Pro simply does not have the experience on this map. With an 11.1% win-rate on Vertigo, Virtus.Pro was always going to find itself in a tough spot. The team has brought about some innovative gameplay on Vertigo. They can be extremely flexible with their playstyle, allowing the stars on the roster to make deep inroads and surprise the opponents. 

Speaking of stars, it was time for the old guard to shine. Dan "apEX" Madesclaire  ended Vertigo with 24 kills, a big lead over anyone else on the server. Vitality’s CT defense was impenetrable as the French roster finished the first half with a 12-3 score. Even Kyojin falling to his death near the B bombsite did not help Virtus.Pro as the game was already too far gone by this time. It is nearly impossible to come back from a 3-12 deficit. While Virtus.Pro tried their best, they could only secure three more rounds.

What’s next for Team Vitality?

Team Vitality is one of the favorites to win IEM Summer 2021. With this victory, Zyw0o and co. set up a match against OG in the semifinals.

The IEM Summer 2021 is a 16 team online tournament but features some of the best from Europe in participation. The event has a $250,000 prize pool and also rewards teams with ESL Pro Tour points.

Stay tuned to esports.gg for the latest CS:GO news and updates.

Featured Image Credit: Misutaaa's twitter.

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