Na`Vi over EnVyUs to EEPL grand final
Na`Vi are the second team to make it into the grand final of the ESL ESEA Pro League Season 2 Finals by defeating EnVyUs 2-0 (16-9 on de_dust2 and 22-18 on de_cbble).
The second semifinal match-up between EnVyUs and Natus Vincere is one that is steeped in history, with the two teams both having made the grand final of the last CS:GO major in DreamHack Cluj-Napoca (which nV won) as well as having dueled on numerous other high profile arenas (such as the quarter-finals of ESL One Cologne).
However, both teams entered the semifinal in different states of mind, with EnVy having recently finished in the last place slot at the FACEIT S3 finals whereas Na`Vi returned to the United States from having been champions at IEM San Jose two weeks before.
The first map was de_dust2, Na`Vi's pick, and continued to prove to be Ladislav "GuardiaN" Kovács's throne, castle, and domain as the Slovakian player wreaked havoc on the Frenchmen on both halves.
GuardiaN was as ever pushing the envelope of aggressive AWPing
Na`Vi finished their CT half up ahead at 9-6, with all five players having their moments to display firepower, such as when Denis "seized" Kostin picked up an AWP and obliterated four of nV's players around the mid area.
Despite losing the second pistol, Na`Vi force bought Deagles and TEC-9's with the score at 9-7 and managed to eco EnVyUs, who were struggling at holding split A-pushes in particular.
The French team at that point seemed to lose control of the game as Na`Vi exploited multiple angles of entry to gain a spread of T-side rounds and close the map out 16-9.
de_cbble saw EnVyUs in their "pistol-esque" element as Vincent "Happy" Schopenhauer and crew won their CT pistol and took the first three rounds. However, Na`Vi certainly had opened up the stratbook and were determined not to lose another best-of-three to the French team as the Eastern European team won the first gunround and kept the first half close before ultimately pulling ahead and finishing at 9-6 up.
kennyS put up a valiant effort on de_cbble
EnVyUs once again won a pistol round (the French team therefore won all four pistol rounds in the game) and equalised the score at 9-9 before continued superb play from seized and GuardiaN began to give Na`Vi rounds and economy.
With erstwhile in-game leader Danylo "Zeus" Teslenko topping the scoreboard for Na`Vi, the yellow-adorned team moved ahead to a formidable 14-9 before EnVyUs finally put a T-side round on the board, mainly thanks to Dan "apEX" Madesclaire getting double entries on the 24th round.
This round allowed EnVyUs to string together a consecutive round, but on the following round of play, a Na`Vi team that saw only one rifle and four pistols somehow overpowered the Frenchmen on B-site and gave Na`Vi match point.
Na`Vi once again failed to capitalise on this fact and EnVyUs continued to successfully entry onto sites, bringing the score to 15-13 and forcing Na`Vi to call a pause. On said pause, Na`Vi decided to buy and this decision backfired for the team as they lost the round and reset their economy.
Zeus had a strong second map for Na`Vi
EnVyUs switched up their pacing on their T-side of overtime which allowed them to get two rounds in their favour and finish the half up 17-16; however Na`Vi responded in kind after allowing nV one CT round, thereby bringing the score to 18-18 and double overtime.
The second overtime instead saw patient and analytic T-sided executes from Na`Vi disintegrate nV's defenses and bring give Na`Vi three straight rounds, making the score 21-18.
Egor "flamie" Vasilyev picked up two finishing Autosniper kills on Na`Vi's first CT round of double overtime to add extra insult to injury and give Na`Vi de_cbble (22-18) and the series with a 2-0 win.
stich writes for HLTV.org and can be found on Twitter