Imperial upset Cloud9 to keep Major dreams alive
Cloud9's time in Antwerp has drawn to a close with the Brazilian side of Imperial pulling off the upset in three maps. Imperial's advancement to just one game shy of the playoffs surpasses the majority of people's expectations, and the multi-time Major winning core now has a pathway to add another to their legacy.
The first map of the series took the two teams to Imperial's pick of Overpass where it would ultimately be Cloud9 who got off on the right foot, finding six rounds on the bounce to run up an early lead. Although Imperial stabilized by finding four of their own shortly thereafter, Cloud9 still managed to head into their T-side with a comfortable 10-5 lead.
Despite this, Imperial began to mount a comeback once on their CT-side, finding seven of the opening nine rounds to tie the score. A back-and-forth skirmish ensued from then onwards with neither side able to break free by the end of regulation, culminating in the game descending into a triple-overtime slugfest. Once there, it would end up being Imperial who managed to pull away, stealing Overpass 25-23 in nail-biting fashion to lead 1-0 in the series.
The second map of Vertigo started in similar fashion to Overpass, with Cloud9 initially starting firmly in the driver's seat with a 6-3 advantage to kick off their T-side. The Brazilians would answer back towards the end of the half, eating away at the deficit with Cloud9 just one round ahead by the switch. The CIS squad turned it up a gear once on the CT-side, with a team-wide effort helping spearhead the side to a 16-9 victory to send the series to Mirage for the deciding map.
Eager to continue their Major runs, Imperial started Mirage with fire in their bellies, cruising to an effortless 10-1 defensive lead thanks to a strong individual performance by Fernando "fer" Alvarenga. Cloud9 did wake up towards the latter stages of their T-side, but adding just two additional rounds to their name left the squad trailing 12-3 by the swap. Once on the attack, Imperial wasted no time in finding the four rounds they needed to take Mirage 16-3 and win the series 2-1.
|Cloud9||K - D||+/-||ADR||KAST||Rating 2.0|
|Sergey 'Ax1Le' Rykhtorov||66 - 61||+5||85.0||66.3%||1.16|
|Vladislav 'nafany' Gorshkov||63 - 62||+1||80.7||64.1%||1.06|
|Dmitry 'sh1ro' Sokolov||59 - 53||+6||60.5||70.7%||1.01|
|Timofey 'interz' Yakushin||44 - 54||-10||53.6||70.7%||0.91|
|Abay 'HObbit' Khasenov||55 - 61||-6||65.4||63.0%||0.91|
|Imperial||K - D||+/-||ADR||KAST||Rating 2.0|
|Fernando 'fer' Alvarenga||79 - 56||+23||91.7||75.0%||1.29|
|Gabriel 'FalleN' Toledo||61 - 52||+9||70.9||69.6%||1.12|
|Vinicius 'VINI' Figueiredo||60 - 61||-1||69.9||70.7%||0.98|
|Ricardo 'boltz' Prass||45 - 58||-13||71.4||62.0%||0.90|
|Lincoln 'fnx' Lau||45 - 62||-17||52.4||66.3%||0.77|
Imperial's victory over Cloud9 sends the Brazilian quintet to the 2-2 pool where they are set to face off against Copenhagen Flames tomorrow.