Vitality overcome Liquid at BLAST
The French side will face Astralis in the winners' match of Group A.
After trading map picks, Inferno and Vertigo, Vitality came out on top on Mirage over Liquid and claimed a 2-1 victory in their BLAST Premier Fall Groups opener. Mathieu "ZywOo" Herbaut showed up as expected, but Vitality's supporting cast provided a lot throughout the series to build on their runners-up finish at ESL Pro League Season 14.
"I'm just playing on my feeling, which is nice," 18-year-old Kévin "misutaaa" Rabier said after the match in which he averaged a 1.12 rating, topping the scoreboard on Inferno with 26K-14D. Vertigo was a map to forget, as Liquid stopped their opponents from gaining any map control and took it convincingly, but the bounce back on Mirage was strong and Vitality closed it out.
"I remember that in the past when we had a hard map, it was hard to go to the next one," misutaaa added in the post-match interview, explaining that he doesn't struggle with such issues anymore. "What happened already happened, you can't change it, so f*ck it."
Impeccable form from misutaaa propelled Vitality into a 7-0 lead on Inferno, allowing for the Frenchmen to put Liquid into a chokehold early on. The CT side from Dan "apEX" Madesclaire and co. looked comfortable throughout, only leaking a few rounds at the end of the half, but a pistol win after the switch put them on course for a 16-6 victory.
A 1v1 clutch from Jake "Stewie2K" Yip made the score 3-1 on Vertigo and proved crucial to Liquid establishing themselves on the second map. After that, Vitality's attempts to penetrate the A bombsite fell flat, resulting in a 12-3 half. Adding a pistol round loss and a 1v2 clutch from Gabriel "FalleN" Toledo to that brought Liquid to the edge of victory, with Richard "shox" Papillon's 1v3 clutch only extending the map temporarily.
Mirage was all about high-tempo play, and Vitality was able to thrive in the chaos to build a lead, 7-1, before Keith "NAF" Markovic, Stewie2K, and FalleN had their moments in the spotlight to shrink the gap before switching to the defense (10-5). This time, there was no swift second-half closeout as the American team put up a solid CT side when the rifles came into play, but a low buy and apEX on the Scout pulled Vitality over the line before it became too scary, 16-11.
|Vitality||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|57 - 44||+13||89.4||1.32|
|60 - 57||+3||89.8||1.13|
|57 - 51||+6||80.0||1.12|
|49 - 47||+2||71.9||1.04|
|35 - 54||-19||56.9||0.82|