Even in defeat to Gambit, this series was a confidence booster for Team Secret for the remainder of the tournament.

The VCT Masters group stage is finally underway. With two days of Champs in the books, Team Secret will be preparing for their lower bracket match against Crazy Raccoon.

Ahead of their series against Gambit, not many would have predicted Team Secret to make this series competitive. Many anticipated it would be a 2-0 victory for the CIS side and was a “free hit” for the SEA representatives.

Things did not particularly play out this way as Secret stormed into Icebox with the intention of causing chaos. Secret achieved just stat as they put on an impressive first-half performance to take the game away from Gambit. While Secret was riding the wave of adrenaline, the Icebox defeat lit a fire inside of Gambit.

The Killjoy pick threw Secret off their game

Redgar surprised Team Secret with a Killjoy pick.
POTSDAM, GERMANY – DECEMBER 2: Team Gambit Esports’ Igor “Redgar” Vlasov competes at the VALORANT Champions Groups Stage on December 2, 2021, in Potsdam, Germany. (Photo by Wojciech Wandzel/Riot Games)

Breeze is a map that presented two different stories. For Gambit, this was one of their stronger maps, for Team Secret, it was evidently a map they do not like. Gambit surprised Team Secret when they locked in Killjoy, an agent that they [Secret] has hardly played against on Breeze.

For Secret’s Riley “witz” Go, the Killjoy pick by Gambit was not expected and forced them to try and adapt to the agent.

“The killjoy pick from Gambit was a surprise for us because we very rarely play against Killjoy on Breeze and secondly that was our worst map, it was very hard to play.”

While professional players are expected to adapt on the fly, Secret had no answer on Breeze. It was a demolition job as the CIS powerhouse took the map 13-0. This was the first perfect game at VCT Champs and it was a statement game from Gambit. Secret had made them look silly in game one and wanted to make sure everyone knew who the top dogs were.

Team Secret never lost their cofidence

)POTSDAM, GERMANY – DECEMBER 2: Team Secret gets amped up at the VALORANT Champions Groups Stage on December 2, 2021 in Potsdam, Germany. (Photo by Lance Skundrich/Riot Games)

One of the biggest takeaways from this best-of-three was Team Secret’s confidence. They didn’t care they were going up against the best team in the world. This was reflected in their third map on Bind. The first half started well for Secret as they kept the score respectable at 7-5.

Unfortunately for Secret, they failed to remain composed as Gambit took their game up a gear and won the second half 6-1. Despite just coming off a 13-0 defeat, Secret performed admirably. Witz explained how their own confidence played a part in coming back out stronger.

“After the loss we just reset our emotional mentality, we just focussed on the third map. We knew that we could beat them because we practiced so much on Bind but eventually we lost because of our own errors.”

Defeat against Gambit is a catalyst for Team Secret

Despite losing the series to Gambit, Team Secret can take pride in the way they conducted themselves. They played their own style and showed no fear against arguably the best team in the world. Coming into their elimination match against CR, Witz believes their loss to Gambit was a positive catalyst for the team.

“We really wanted to play Gambit on the first match, this was a very good opportunity for us because if we beat Gambit it’s easier to beat other teams. Since we got one map against them I think our confidence is very high right now”

Witz.

This is the mindset other teams should look to adopt for international events. Every team at VCT Champs has worked extremely hard to get to this event, why not give it your all? Team Secret did not fear Gambit, even if they really should. Secret were confident in their own abilities and that shows a special bond the players have with each other. They win together, but also lose together.

Team Secret will face off against Crazy Raccoon on December 5.

Stay tuned to esports.gg for the latest Valorant news and updates.

Jordan Marney -

Jordan Marney

| Twitter: @MarnMedia

Jordan "Marn" Marney is an esports journalist from across the pond. Marn specialises in telling stories about League of Legends and Call of Duty. Marn has been a passionate esports fan since 2014 and has written for publications Unikrn, Esports Network, ESTNN and The United Stand.