FunPlus Phoenix put on another dominant display in their EMEA Challengers Lower Bracket Final matchup with Guild Esports.
FunPlus Phoenix tore right through Guild Esports in the Stage 2 EMEA Challengers Lower Bracket Final. Both teams had already qualified for VCT Masters 2 Copenhagen but were still had a chance to claim a higher seed.
With this win FPX will move on to the Stage 2 EMEA Challengers Grand Final where they will find themselves in a rematch against Fnatic. Though they have yet to beat them so far in this stage, having lost to them in both of their last encounters, they will certainly be feeling good about their chances this time around. And while FPX are simply excited to finally be able to attend a Masters LAN, they are just as eager to defend their Stage 1 title. As was stated in “Zyppan” ‘s post-match interview.
“I am really happy that we managed to qualify for Copenhagen after not being able to go to Iceland last time. It is huge for us. And for the Grand Final tomorrow we want to defend our title.”Zyppan, FunPlus Phoenix
Zyppan also touched on his team’s dominant performance on Split, and interestingly enough their composition wasn’t necessarily meant to counter Guild in particular. A statement which cast a good light upon the highly flexible nature of FPX’s roster.
“We didn’t prepare specifically for Guild, we did more against M3C. We expected them to maybe pick Split so it was more of a comp made for them. But it worked as well for Guild.”
FunPlus Phoenix vs Guild Esports full match recap:
Map 1: FunPlus Phoenix continue where they left off on Fracture
The match saw us heading to fracture for the start of this best-of-five series. A great inclusion on FPX’s front who were looking to build off of their performance against M3 Champions in the previous round. As such they also opted for the same team composition that they had in that match.
FPX started things on Fracture with a very convincing pistol round win. And just like with their match against M3C, FPX’s players took complete control of proceedings from that point on; quickly amassing a 5 – 0 lead on the map. Guild briefly interrupted proceedings with a round win of their own. But FPX brushed them aside to win five more rounds to break double digits in the first half; with Guild only able to win two rounds. FPX were heading into halftime with a commanding 10 – 2 lead, and it was the pair Ardiis and Suygetsu that proved to be too much for Guild to handle on defense.
Guild did at least manage to win the first two rounds of their defensive half. But after FPX managed to take the third round of the second half, it was abundantly clear that there was only going to be one winner in this contest. And with that FunPlus Phoenix took Fracture 13 – 4 to take a well deserved 1 – 0 lead in this best-of-five series.
Map 2: Zyppan and Leo go head to head on Haven
After a truly dismal start to the series Guild looked to hit back immediately with their map pick Haven. Guild held a slight advantage from a statistical standpoint. But if they were to stand a chance of winning this map they were going to have to try and stand up to the shear aggression
Guild got off to a great start on Haven by taking the first pistol round. And they were able to string together three more rounds as they looked to replicate FPX’s performance on Fracture. Guild’s duo of Sayf and “Leo” were having doing particularly well in their efforts to stifle the aggressive tendencies of FPX.
Once FPX got their first round win on the board following Guild’s four round spree, the match turned into a back-and-forth scrap between the teams with FPX starting to find dip their legs into this map. But Guild did well enough to take a 7 – 5 lead into halftime.
Guild had a good start to the second half as well by winning the first two rounds to stretch their lead to 9 – 5. And Leo looked poised to continue his impressive performance from the first half with his Sova play. But FPX seemed to get their second win as they ripped off seven rounds in a row to take the lead at 12 – 9 whilst also shattering Guild’s economy two times over in the process.
Guild managed to take two more rounds as they attempted to force overtime. But FunPlus Phoenix just had enough left in the tank to close out Haven 13 – 11, extending their lead in the match to 2 – 0.
Map 3: Split
Guild were in a serious bind going into Map 3. After the trouncing they received on Fracture, compounded with the scrappy affair on their map pick Haven, FPX looked like they were firmly in the drivers seat. And though Split seemed like a bit more even contest between the pair statistically speaking, Guild were going to have pull off something special if they hoped to get back into this best-of-five series.
FPX took the first pistol round and managed to chain that right into the second round. And from that point on the momentum continued to build. With FPX conjuring up a commanding 6 – 0 lead in the first half.
Zyppan and Ardiis were having another good performance for FPX, but Guild looked absolutely deflated in this match. Guild managed to string together three rounds of their own off the back of a timeout. But FPX managed to take two more rounds to take their lead to 8 -4 going into halftime.
FPX continued to build on their first half successes by winning the second pistol round. After they chained three more rounds after that it looked as though Guild were waiting to be put out of their misery. And sure enough their cry for mercy was answered as FunPlus Phoenix won Spilt 13 – 4 to take the series 3 – 0