hallzerk steps up as Complexity oust MOUZ from IEM Katowice
Complexity staved off an early exit from IEM Katowice after moving past MOUZ, 2-1, eliminating the European outfit after drawing first blood on Inferno (16-9), dropping Nuke (11-16), and closing out a hard-fought Ancient (16-12).
The best-of-three was the first head-to-head between the two teams since MOUZ triumphed over Johnny "JT" Theodosiou's men 2-1 at ESL Pro League Season 16 in September. This time, however, it was Complexity who reigned supreme thanks to stellar AWPing across all three maps from Håkon "hallzerk" Fjærli, who notably posted his best-ever LAN performance on Inferno (2.02 rating).
"I felt we deserved that one [the win], we've been practising really hard the past few weeks," the Norwegian marksman said in a post-match interview. "I probably think we have been the team that has been practising the most, just individual and everything. So, finally, we can reap the rewards of the good practice.
"The amount of practice and the things we've been talking about in the team and figuring out ourselves has been helping us out a lot. Everyone thinks that we are a new Complexity right now and we can go far if we keep going like this."
The series kicked off on Complexity's pick of Inferno but it was MOUZ who got off to a slightly stronger start, a server-leading 11 kills from David "frozen" Čerňanský powering the European squad to a slender 4-3 lead straight out of the gates. The neck-and-neck nature of the map continued as the half progressed; sporadic round wins came through from both sides, but it was MOUZ who managed to pull ahead, a stellar 3k site hold from Dorian "xertioN" Berman in round 15 gifting the international squad a one-round buffer at the interval.
A superlative quad kill from hallzerk in the pistol round granted Complexity a way back into the driver's seat, the side going on to add three of the next four rounds to extend their lead, 11-9. Any chances of MOUZ finding a way back into the game were quickly brushed aside from this point onward. hallzerk put both bombsites on lockdown, prowling all areas of the map with his merciless Big Green to add 10 AWP kills to his tally and carry the squad to an overwhelmingly confident 16-9 scoreline.
It was an otherworldly performance from xertioN that got MOUZ's T-side effort on Nuke underway, the Israeli rifler posting a flawless 12-0 performance to propel the IEM Rio Major semi-finalists to an early 6-0 lead. It took until the seventh round for Complexity to respond, with the side earning some much-needed respite thanks to double kills from Justin "FaNg" Coakley and hallzerk. This shift in momentum proved to be just what the doctor ordered for the North American lineup, and they went on to piece together four rounds on the trot to reduce the deficit to a more manageable 6-9 scoreline by the side swap.
Complexity kept up their recovery at the onset of their T-side campaign, overturning MOUZ's pistol round win with a spree of their own to reach double digits and tie things up, 11-11. MOUZ stabilised to take care of this rejuvenated Complexity, however, with particularly impactful rounds from Christopher "dexter" Nong at the most important moments coming through to flip the script and push the multinational roster to a series-equalising 16-11 showing.
Complexity hit the ground running at the start of Ancient, with strong fragging from all of the team's individuals enabling the roster to go up 6-3 on the attacking side. MOUZ were able to remain close behind on the back of a two-round spree, but the New World visitors maintained their pressure, locking in a first-half victory after thrice exploiting defensive weaknesses on the B bombsite. Complexity looked poised to extend their grip on the game to 10 rounds, but more heroics from xertioN, this time with a triple-kill hold of Cave in round 15, gave MOUZ an opportunity to sit on six rounds by the switch.
dexter, who had just two kills to his name by the turn of the half, pulled off a 1vs1 over Michael "Grim" Wince to christen the second period, an all-important clutch as the side converted the ensuing two rounds to bring the map level-pegging, 9-9. The two teams descended into a back-and-forth skirmish from here on out, exchanging rounds to-and-fro in a battle that ultimately favoured Complexity, who inched ever closer to victory, 14-12. What was left of Ancient was merely a formality; a quad kill from FaNg on the A site nudged the North Americans onto map and match point, with the side closing things out the round after, 16-12.
|Complexity||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|80 - 45||+35||99.0||1.54|
|53 - 48||+5||71.7||1.08|
|49 - 50||-1||68.5||1.01|
|46 - 54||-8||65.8||1.00|
|37 - 57||-20||49.6||0.73|