The confidence level of Version1 couldn’t be higher after dispensing with Sentinels, 2-0, and finishing the NA Challengers group stages undefeated. 

Version1’s Alexander “Zander” Dituri spoke on that confidence level heading into the playoffs. With wins over Sentinels and OpTic, V1 has again come in as the underdogs and taken the region by storm. The addition of Zander as both their in-game leader and primary Controller has been discussed to death, but after a flawlessly called game against Sentinels, it bears repeating. V1 Zander” spoke on that confidence level heading into the playoffs.

“We’re going to be strong heading into playoffs,” said V1 Alexander “Zander” Dituri in a post-match interview, “especially against LG, we don’t see them as much of a threat. No offense, love them, but if we did lose this, we would’ve had to play XSET which is tougher, but either way, we’re going to destroy everyone”

V1 runs over Sentinels on Ascent

On Ascent, it was a scientific lecture on how to retake the A-site.With clinical precision, V1 out-dueled Sentinels on the first point of contact, finding 13 first kills to Sentinels four. The constant presence on A-heaven and taking necessary angles and forcing our early utility from Sentinels opened up the map for Jordan “Zellsis” Montemurro on Kay-O.

Effys vs Zellsis
graphic via twitch.tv/valorant

For example, Zellsis ended Ascent with a 100% KAST (kills, assist, survive, trade%). His KAST% shows the massive value he was creating for himself and his teammates on executes. As for sticking with Astra over the recently buffed Omen or Brimstone, it mostly comes down to V1 being one of the better Astra teams. The dominant 5-1 record with lopsided victories on Astra gives them no reason to switch for now.

“Our Ascent is strong right now, especially with Astra,” said Zander. “She brings a lot on this map and I don’t think there was a need to change it. We’re really strong on this map. But no, we’re open to playing Brim or Omen on this map too. Who knows? We might switch it in the future.”

Astra on patch 4.04 and into playoffs

Unfortunately for Zander, teams might opt out of this map against V1 in the future, but the possibilities of agent switches instead of Astra is intriguing. It speaks to V1’s incredible versatility which makes them effectively a meta-proof roster.  It’s not only the players, but head coach Ian “Immi” Harding who prepares them for every eventuality and scenario in practice. 

“Immi does everything really,” said Zander after the win. “Immi goes over anything and everything that’s important. We go over everything little thing about the bombsites”

V1 Zander

The attention to detail in the site hits, retakes and their general map control out of defaults is far too calculated to be anything but preparation and visualization. Time and time again, V1 were more than prepared for a game plan adjustment from Sentinels.

Even when Sentinels went on a run late on Haven,  V1 switched it up immediately. They saw Sentinels playing quickly into sites and aggressively pushed those areas with either Zellsis and Erik “penny” Penny on Jett. Furthermore, we saw Maxim “wippie” Shepelev give us a prime example of the power behind his teleport on defense.

V1 will face Luminosity (LG) in the first round when the playoffs begin on March 17th. Till then stay tuned to esports.gg for the latest Valorant news and updates.

Blake Van Poucke -

Blake Van Poucke

| Twitter: @TokyoDown

Blake Van Poucke is a Valorant writer at esports.gg. He found esports through the early days of MLG and the Super Smash Bros Melee scene. He's been competing and writing about esports dating back to 2008. He has written for several publications and wishes to return to in-person esports events in 2022