E-Sport Weekend Round-Up (21st December)
Last week went without a hitch for a lot of the top teams, but very rarely does a Gfinity tournament happen without some kind of an upset. This week wasn't an exception.
The first team to fall was Noble. They've not been on particularly good form of late, and that lack of form continued. Round four saw them lose 3-2 to SarpbcRemasterpl0x. Granted, they are a team that are on the rise, but the Noble of a month ago could have made short work of them.
The quarter finals also saw some excitement. SK Gaming, who have won Gfinity countless times, were defeated in five games by Spectral, and myXMG managed to eliminate Crown & Jewels 3-1. More expectedly, Supersonic Avengers beat SarpbcRemasterpl0x 3-0, and FlipSid3 Tactics beat Majestic Criminals, although they did drop a game in doing so.
Come the semi finals, FlipSid3 just about edged out my myXMG, but it took them five games to do so. myXMG have been on a tear recently, and if they continue on this upward trend they could start challenging for the top spots on the EU power rankings really quite soon.
Supersonic Avengers are another team on the up. Having already swept SarpbcRemasterpl0x, they then went on to sweep Spectral in the semi final to set up a final with FlipSid3 Tactics. That's where things got even more interesting - SA managed to take them to five games, and although they did eventually lose, that's still a big achievement for a team that weren't playing a month ago.ESL EU Cup #21
With a lot of the better known teams playing in the RLC Pro League Qualifiers later in the day, this week's ESL gave a unique opportunity for some of the 15-30 area teams to prove their worth. Several teams took that initiative. Manteca FC, Galactic Lions, SHIFTplay, Torched, Underkovert and Firewall all made the quarter finals, a handful of teams that have been on the radar for a while, and a few that have been on the cusp before but never quite made it.
Manteca_FC made the semi finals last week, and they did the same this week with a 3-1 win over Firewall. Galactic Lions beat Nightmare Surf to meet Manteca in the semi finals, where the Lions won once again to reach the final. On the other side of the bracket Underkovert got a win over SHIFTplay, and Torched beat Top Men. Torched came out on top in the resulting semi final, and set up an interesting final between Galactic Lions and Torched.
In the end, the final was anything but close. Galactic Lions roared their way to victory and completed a four game sweep over Torched. Having qualified for the RLC Pro League Qualifier and now having won ESL, Galactic Lions definitely seem to be a team to watch out for.RLC Pro League Qualifiers
We should have dedicated posts up about the Pro League before long so I won't go into detail here, but the teams that qualified were as follows:
EU: Crown & Jewels, myXMG, Supersonic Avengers, Spectral, Noble eSports
NA: Failure To Launch, Orange Creamsicle, Never On Target, SnK Apollo, Nexus
We ended up with five teams from each region due to the decision to expand the league. Noble and Nexus won play off matches between the losers of the lower bracket advancement matches.
The EU teams will join FlipSid3 Tactics and SK Gaming who pre-qualified for the league, while the NA teams will join iBUYPOWER Cosmic and Kings of Urban.ESL NA Cup #21
While some of the RLC Pro League qualifier teams showed up in the EU bracket, none of them did for NA, which once again gave a lot of lower rated teams a good opportunity to shine. A rare outing for the Dirty Donkeys was seen in the first round, but having not played since mid September (according to the ESL website) they lost 3-2 to the questionably named 'Neymar Kicks Puppies.'
Redline: Shockwave were amongst the favourites going in having reached the final last week, but they fell in the round of 64, as did a few other teams such as Aerial Assassins. Tres Plebitos and InterstellarGG amongst others fell soon after in the round of 32, meaning a lot of the teams that you might have expected to see in the later rounds didn't make it, even without teams like Nexus showing up.
Come the semi finals we had Syntactics, Ubiquitas, No Problem! and Team Ghostboosters remaining. Ubiquitas made short work of Syntactics to reach the final, and No Problem! had few problems against Team Ghostboosters.
Come the final, No Problem struggled against Ubiquitas and ultimately lost the match four games to one. Congratulations to Ubiquitas on a great victory, their results certainly suggest that they could be pushing for a spot on the power rankings before long.