Virtus.pro over Keyd in thrilling series
The final quarter-final of the day has ended in a three-map fashion with Virtus.pro beating Keyd Stars with scorelines of 16:4 on de_mirage, 19:17 on de_overpass for Keyd and 16:1 on de_nuke, thereby moving on to the semifinals.
The final match of Friday March 13th at ESL One Katowice 2015 saw home-crowd favourites Virtus.pro take on Brazilian Keyd Stars, the latter being the first team from outside of Europe or North America to make it into the top eight at a major.
With the first map chosen as de_mirage, widely regarded as Keyd's specialty map, the series already promised to deliver in terms of expectations. Fernando "fer" Alvarenga got the Brazilians off to a strong start with three pistol round kills on their T side.
Like a flash of lightning, Filip "NEO" Kubski & co. retaliated in the next round, with the 27-year-old NEO leading the comeback with a Scout in hand. That round, along with the crowd's enthusiastic cheers, allowed the Poles of VP to enter the CT-side driver's seat.
NEO was a big part of VP's early game success on mirage
The Brazilian squad had their chance on the sixth round, when they were able to take over B site with a clean execute. VP shut down this volta for Keyd in the next round and placed them into a flimsy money situation, necesitating a force buy.
By the 11th round, with the score at 8:2 for VP, the Poles were starting to bulldoze through Keyd without losing any players, which certainly forced Keyd to call a timeout for the next round in order to reset their momentum.
Keyd elected to go with a B push after the pause, as that site had favoured the team earlier, however Janusz "Snax" Pogorzelski used his signature style of clever play to help defuse the danger in the round.
Keyd were shut down on their favourite map
With Virtus playing a dangerous and impressive style of fluid CT rotations, Keyd were left with not many openings in the Polish defense, and despite Keyd garnering a supplementary round, the half ultimately ended at 12:3 in VP's favour.
Keyd breathed some life into their limbs with their second pistol round win of the game, shutting down a VP A-site take. Once again however, and perhaps showcasing the Brazilian's shakiness in the game, Virtus.pro stole the next round away with a standard A execute and with TEC-9's blazing.
With the Virtus plough in full furrow mode, the Polish team closed out de_mirage 16:4.
The second map was de_overpass and the beginning delineated some breathing space to Keyd by giving them the oft preferred CT side due to the map being VP's pick.
The Poles had other plans in mind, and after a keen A-site fake, they were able to take the T-side pistol. Keyd rallied back in the next round with a CZ-75 & Five-Seven buy and managed to take the momentum back.
Virtus.pro were put to the test on de_overpass
Virtus.pro defaulted to a TEC-9 buy, indicative of the overall tournament's save round meta, and Snax picked up a devastating four kills to send Keyd back into the save territories.
Ricardo "boltz" Prass stood out with some impressive headshot action in some of the rounds, and also helped keep the save rounds close; eventually, a playground-push by Keyd gave them another round, with Gabriel "FalleN" Toledo helping to secure the final kill.
The Brazilians began to string some CT rounds together then, with one notable moment featuring Jarosław "pashaBiceps" Jarząbkowski seemingly walking into a Keyd player in what could have been a smoke spectator bug.
boltz put in impressive work in the aim department
Keyd ended up finishing the half with a surprising 11:4 score, perhaps unexpected for the Brazilians following their crumble on de_mirage.
In the commentating Sean "seang@res" Gares words', Keyd opted for the "YOLO long sewer rush" on their T pistol and managed to secure A-site and the round, giving themselves the 12:4 lead.
Undaunted by this lead, Virtus.pro began the long march to a comeback campaign, only giving Keyd two Terrorist rounds until the score miraculously stood at 14:14.
Despite Snax and NEO dropping 30+ frags apiece, Virtus.pro finally let slip on the 29th round with boltz winning perhaps the most important one-on-two of his career up until that moment. Virtus.pro rallied in the next round however to force an overtime.
The crowd went eerily quiet at points during de_overpass
The Poles managed to collect two CT rounds but Keyd took the final round of the first half of overtime. In the beginning of the second half, VP opted to rush A which ultimately became their undoing as Keyd were able to mow down the Polish aggressors on A-site.
With the score tied at 17:17, the game slowed down slightly and FalleN showed off exemplary play in CT bathrooms to pick off Virtus one-by-one. In the final round, Lucas "steel" Lopes got an important three kills to give Keyd the second map at 19:17.
The final showdown was de_nuke with Virtus.pro starting on the statistically easier CT side. Securing the pistol and succeeding rounds with ease, the Polish galère began to mop the floor against Keyd's attempts to take either site, going up an uncontested 12:0 until Keyd managed to get the right picks down in the 13th round.
TaZ was a key of VP's defense on upper site on nuke
In the next round, Snax showed how he could easily fill the role as secondary AWPer with two critical kills to stop Keyd's ramp execute; the last round cleanly went VP's way to close the half off at 14:1.
The rigor mortis setting in fast, Keyd tried to defend against an enthusiastic Virtus.pro T pistol to no avail. From there it was only a round to sweep for the Poles, and they ended up walking away off the semi-finals at a 2-1 scoreline.
K - D
Filip 'NEO' KubskiNEO
75 - 40
Janusz 'Snax' PogorzelskiSnax
66 - 41
Jarosław 'pashaBiceps' JarząbkowskipashaBiceps
53 - 39
Paweł 'byali' Bielińskibyali
52 - 44
Wiktor 'TaZ' WojtasTaZ
49 - 47