VP take revenge on SK, to final
Virtus.pro have beaten SK Gaming in the semifinals at ESL New York 2-1 (16-19 on Mirage, 25-21 on Overpass and 16-7 on Nuke), making it into the Grand Final where they will face Na'Vi.
Being one of the few teams to take maps from SK, since they went on to dominate from MLG Columbus onwards, the Polish side was looking to add just one more map to the collection this time to edge out the Brazilians.
The first part of the battle was going to be Mirage and SK started out in blazing fashion with a clean pistol round on CT side, but Virtus.pro kept them on their toes with a forcebuy and it required a sharp 1v2 clutch from Lincoln "fnx" Lau to stay in the lead. The Plow kept the money low, which meant they could put Gabriel "FalleN" Toledo's men on a double eco after winning the first gunround, equalising the score 3-3.
The world champions struck back immediately with their feared double AWP setup, but once again the retakes came down to the wire keeping the economy low for the CT's. Virtus.pro took full advantage of that when they had the rifles again, splitting into A in the 10th round and resetting the Brazilian side. The rounds went back and forth, as Janusz "Snax" Pogorzelski's team kept switching up their timings. 8-7 in favor of VP by halftime.
The Poles took the CT pistol into their hands, but when top class teams play the forcebuys are always dangerous and SK proved that, undoing the early investment from Virtus.pro and moving to a 10-9 lead. Wiktor "TaZ" Wojtas then took the iniative by first going aggressive and shutting down the T's towards ramp, and then grabbed a triple in the following round which came down to a 1v1 against Epitacio "TACO" de Melo.
fnx was bringing the fire on Mirage
The usual stars for SK seemed absent, but luckily the Phoenix fnx was once again on fire getting his own triple, in a hairy take of the B site, but Paweł "byali" Bieliński's timing was fortunate in the 1v2 and he kept his team ahead in the game. The Poles then got their own double AWP setup, each getting an opening pick, but again the unstoppable fnx brought back the 3v5, resetting the Polish economy.
FalleN had figured out a formula on T-side, as they kept working the map control, never overextending and VP kept getting isolated, facing map point 13-15. Only the foolish will ever count out the longest standing roster in CS:GO, and with nothing to lose they got the jump on the Brazilians twice, and Jarosław "pashaBiceps" Jarząbkowski put the game into overtime with a clutch in the end.
VP seemed exhausted despite it being their comeback that had pushed the map into this state and when FalleN is hitting the shots, you need to wake up early to get out on top. SK showed little mercy and closed out the map 19-15.
Next up was Overpass, and now the SK unit was fired up, taking six rounds off the back of their T pistol. It could have been different, as Snax almost pulled off a 1v3 retake with an AWP on B. He took his revenge in the following round, getting two crucial opening picks after a tactical timeout from his team.
byali then went huge in a clever counter to the passive play from SK, as he tricked around his position in a forward stance from monster tunnel, picking up a quad kill. This round lighted a spark for the Polish power house as they went on a rampage going forward, taking seven rounds in the row by surrounding the Brazilian offense again and again. Once again the Poles got a 8-7 lead by halftime.
The fastest AWP in the west did what he could on Overpass
VP themselves then took a swift T pistol round, and held off an otherwise scary forcebuy from SK. The Brazilians then took the first gun round, but it was the same story as on Mirage, losing way too many guns on their retakes, and it took a hero clutch out of nowhere from FalleN to hold the Plow back.
It turned into a wild west shootout onward, Snax nearly pulling off a clutch almost identical to the now famous one from Filip "NEO" Kubski in Bucharest. It was captain FalleN though who round after round pulled out the dirtiest of picks onto the hapless Poles again and again with his trusty AWP. There was surely no way back again for VP again as SK moved on to match point again 15-12.
Madness ensued, as VP held on, pashaBiceps once again pulling off a 1v1 clutch against TACO and the grand old man of CS TaZ was not keen to lie down just yet, as he was instrumental in turning a scary 2v3 into a win, equalising 15-15.
The world champions took charge on the CT side in the first overtime, taking a 3-0 lead as TACO this time came out of the duel against pashaBiceps with a ninja defuse. A mindboggling triple AWP on T side, on match point, had no effect for Marcelo "coldzera" David and Co. and it costed them dearly as they couldn't either make a dent in the Polish defense in the following round, which left them with three Tec-9's in the last round and VP took their own 3-0 CT round.
Second overtime went more back and forth, but the list of executes for both teams were running dry, and as they each took 2-1 scorelines on their CT-side, it was time for OT 3.
This time however, VP had somehow coordinated their offense in the break in between and took a blistering three rounds on the T-side and used the momentum to take the map 25-21.
You simply can't outlast the old guard just like that
Moving on to the decider on Nuke, possibly being a traumatic map for the Polish side following the woeful pick of it in Cologne, Virtus.pro engaged their feared Plow on T side taking a dominating grip with a 5-0 lead. It took another clutch for FalleN's men to keep them in the game, Snax pulling the shortest straw. Keeping their composure they avoided reset twice, pulling it back to a 5-6 deficit.
Taking a calming timeout, VP pulled out more strats from their new and improved book, taking three more T rounds, though TACO pulled of a miracle backstab from hut with a Five-Seven, taking a quad kill. 9-6 for VP at halftime.
SK kept it exciting in spite of clean CT pistol from VP, but the obligatory force buy in the 17th round paid off. byali and his boys returned the favor at once with their own forcebuy.
The 1# ranked team seemed completely lost onwards on their T-side, pashaBiceps in particular picking them apart left, right and centre, and VP trampled all over the Brazilians, closing out the map 16-7.
|SK||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|Gabriel 'FalleN' ToledoFalleN||79 - 70||+9||70.7||1.08|
|Marcelo 'coldzera' Davidcoldzera||72 - 74||-2||78.0||1.03|
|Epitacio 'TACO' de MeloTACO||71 - 73||-2||74.0||1.00|
|Lincoln 'fnx' Laufnx||70 - 80||-10||75.1||0.90|
|Fernando 'fer' Alvarengafer||60 - 83||-23||73.0||0.89|