The first round of elimination matches for the 2022 VCT Champions tournament continued today as group Ds FNATIC and FURIA battled for their lives in the event.
FURIA, a Brazilian team, faced a formidable opponent in their opening match, which they defeated DRX of Korea. The first map in the series was a lengthy overtime battle, and in the second, FURIA fell apart, despite the team needing to stand up in the match today to avoid a similar fate.
FNATIC was drafted after a contested series against the North Americas 100 Thieves. Despite being one of the top teams in EMEA, FNATIC has been plagued with errors in international tournaments in the past.
Though today's match was a back-and-forth affair with a lot of surprises, the EMEA dominated and won the game 2-1 to advance to the group D decider match.
Today, for the second time, we started off on Icebox. FNATIC is a familiar one, making it an easy first choice for them after it was left in the pool. Despite this, FURIA went out of the gate aggressively with four rounds in a row to maintain its dominance throughout the map.
Even though several rounds were very close, FNATIC made a few mistakes. Boaster turned away at the wrong moment to cost the team. Things weren't looking good on the EMEA teams map pick.
So far on Icebox, it's been a BATTLE! @FURIA | #VALORANTChampions https://twitter.com/YQeDBe5mHr
FURIA were able to defeat Icebox effortlessly 13-9, leveraging on their skillful rounds and relying on Khalil and dgzin as their star players. On the first map, the Brazilian team is in a good position to move into their own map choice.
Breeze was chosen by FURIAs, a map that used to be FNATICs perma-ban. It suggested the EMEA team had a strategy in place. Alfajer, the only Turkish player in the tournament in Istanbul, was locked in Neon.
FNATIC's hidden strategy paid out, and the script was removed from the first map. FURIA was confused by FNATICs executions and utility usage. Alfajer scored an average combat score of 305 in the first half.
FNATIC fought back 13-7 and kept themselves alive. FURIA remained steadfast and composed on their attacking side.
The third map started off much more evenly than the first two. FNATIC and FURIA were equal at the half, with the final rounds of Haven left to decide their fate.
Both chamber players were outstanding, but Derke began to struggle to find his normal form. Khalil found an incredible 4k to keep his team in the game just as it appeared like FNATIC had established a lead.
KHALIL IS UNREALLL @khalilfps | #VALORANTChampions photo.twitter.com/CM3iM7HGEt
In the final round, the tension was palpable, which ended with a 1v1. Enzo, despite being one of the quieter players on his team, sealed the close map for FNATIC 13-11.
The FURIA 2022 VCT journey comes to an end, while FNATIC advances to a second match with 100T in the coming days. The next match will be held on September 8 at 12pm CT.