M3 Champions clutch up against Natus Vincere in VCT EMEA Challengers cover image

M3 Champions clutch up against Natus Vincere in VCT EMEA Challengers

A sensational performance from nAts capped off a solid win for M3 Champions against Natus Vincere in EMEA Challengers.

M3 Champions marked their return in EMEA Challengers with a solid 2 - 0 win over Natus Vincere. This was M3C's first match since Gambit Esports made the decision to allow their star-studded roster to represent themselves independently following the sanctions the organization received in the wake of the Russia-Ukraine war.

While this was there first match since the initial postponement of EMEA Challengers matches took place, M3C looked raring to go. And what a better way for them to kick things off than to go up against Natus Vincere, a team that had not taken a map off of them in their previous matches against their Russian counterparts.

M3 Champions vs Natus Vincere Match Recap:

Map 1: M3 Champions smash Natus Vincere on Ascent

Kicking things off we headed to Ascent for Map 1. Ascent has been a comfort pick for Navi thus far in Challengers and were certainly hoping this provide them a chance to get one over on M3 Champions, who had not played the map in competitive play since VCT Champions. M3C however opted to mix things up from the get-go as nAts selected Astra with Redgar opting to run a Kay/O.

Navi won the first pistol round in a straightforward fashion. But afterwards the map momentum flipped massively on its' head as M3C strung together seven rounds in a row. After the teams traded a few more rounds, M3C managed to take a solid 9 - 3 lead into the second half.

M3C took the second pistol round flawlessly and followed it up with another solid round to stretch their lead to 11 - 3. Navi did their best to try and put up a fight on their map pick with a couple round wins of their own. But M3C were simply to much to handle, despite a couple of mistakes on attack, as they eventually took the map 13 - 5. And the unusual team composition seemed to be paying off for them.

Map 2: nAts' heroics help M3C on Breeze

Things didn't appear to be looking great for Navi after losing on what was supposed to be their comfort pick. They were now heading into Breeze for Map 2, which is arguably M3C's strongest map. Or at least it was, on paper.

The start of Breeze was rather scrappy between the two sides, with M3C taking the first two rounds. However, Navi, who looked like a team reborn, roared back to life as they managed to take seven rounds in a row, which was clearly getting to the M3C players. They did manage to get another couple of rounds to mitigate the damage, but Navi still looked comfortable as they headed into the second half with a 8 - 4 lead.

But at last the sleeping bear of M3C began to reassert their dominance on the map as they took the first couple rounds to start the second half. Navi managed to get one more round to take the lead to 9 - 6, but everything from that point on was going the way of M3C. Especially in relation to nAts who was having a monster of a series.

M3 Champions back with a vengeance

This was an interesting series to say the least. M3 Champions looked the far better team on Ascent, as their well-organized site retakes, combined with the intriguing role swap, proved to be too much for Natus Vincere to handle at times.

Navi did look much better on Breeze surprisingly enough as they looked to have found their footing in the series. But in the end they just weren't able to keep M3C at bay and ultimately capitulated to their patiently aggressive play.

There were a few concerning moments in relation to M3C, especially on Breeze that they will need to iron out for their next couple of games. But the Masters 3 Champions still look like a team to be feared in EMEA Challengers.

M3 Champions will be facing off against BIG in their next match of EMEA Challengers. Whereas Natus Vincere will need to hit the reset button very quickly as they will be going up against the high-flying FunPlus Phoenix squad.

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