Fnatic send Team Liquid packing after a dominant 2-0 performance. Boaster and co. will now face Nuturn Gaming in the lower bracket finals even as Team Liquid exits VCT Masters Reykjavik in the fourth place.
The European derby in the VCT Masters Reykjavik lower bracket saw Team Liquid take on Fnatic in an elimination match. The winner had a chance to stay alive and face Korea’s Nuturn Gaming in the lower bracket final.
Fnatic eliminated North American fan-favorites, Version1, yesterday in the lower bracket match. Meanwhile, Team Liquid took down Vikings to set up this European lower bracket face-off. Here's how the lower bracket match between Fnatic and Team Liquid played out.
The Map veto
Bind - Fnatic takes one-map lead (13-10)
Fnatic started strong on Bind on the offense. The team raced ahead to a 6-1 score on the back of some really skilled individual plays. There were some memorable moments for Team Liquid’s Elias "Jamppi" Olkkonen, but Liquid lacked the synergy in the early rounds.
A tactical timeout and it seems Team Liquid figured out the problem in its approach. Adil "ScreaM" Benrlitom, Jammpi and Travis "L1NK" Mendoza came alive towards the end of the first half helping Team Liquid close the gap. Despite holding a 6-1 lead at one point, Fnatic could not penetrate Liquid’s defense as easily as it could at the start of the map.
The first half ended with a 7-5 lead for Fnatic. But Team Liquid had the momentum coming into the second half and the two teams continued to trade rounds for a while. There was very little separating the two teams at the end of the half and Bind could go either way.
Just as Fnatic started to pull away from Team Liquid (at 10-7), there was another Liquid tactical timeout. Unfortunately, this time around, the timeout was not enough as Jake "Boaster" Howlett and teammates continued to wreak havoc on Bind. The final round saw Fnatic pull off a near improbable win to secure Map 1 as the players showed their synergy and coordination to eliminate all TL players. Fnatic won Map 1 with a 13-10 score and the two teams headed to Team Liquid's map pick of Ascent.
Ascent: Another 13-10 win for Fnatic
Fnatic won the first three rounds on Ascent after repeatedly finding loopholes in the Liquid defense. But once Team Liquid figured out the Fnatic game plan, Scream and co. were able to get themselves in positional advantages to have multiple kills. Scream in particular was exceptional, leading the team in frags as well as in gaining critical information for his teammates.
Team Liquid ended the first half with a 7-5 lead. As the teams switched sides they continued to trade rounds with very little separating the two teams. There was a bit of luck involved as well especially during James "Mistic" Orfila getting two kills through smoke. Fnatic's players continued to impress in the next few rounds with L1nk and Martin "Magnum" Peňkov stepping up to occasion and helping Fnatic pull away from Team Liquid.
With this (13-10, 13-10) victory, Fnatic advance to the next match where they will face the Korean representatives, Nuturn Gaming. Nuturn fell to the lower bracket after a 0-2 loss to Sentinels yesterday. The last three teams at Reykjavik are all from three different regions and the first International Valorant LAN is living up to its hype.