Envy Envy North America Rank #3 and Vision Strikers Vision Strikers Korea Rank #1 reached the playoffs of Masters Berlin today after triumphing in the winner's matches in Group A and B. Sentinels Sentinels North America Rank #1 placed themselves at the forefront of Group D following a victory over F4Q F4Q Korea Rank #4 .
After winning their respective matches against Vivo Keyd Vivo Keyd Brazil Rank #1 and ZETA DIVISION ZETA DIVISION Asia-Pacific Rank #3 , respectively, Envy and KRÜ Esports KRÜ Esports Latin America South Rank #1 found themselves in the Group B winner's match.
The series began on Icebox, KRÜ's pick, where Envy faced heavy resistance but eventually pulled through with 13-9 win. Ascent was much more one-sided, ending in 13-2 blowout for Envy.Yes, Envy really took a pause for KRÜ.
“We made too many mistakes [on Icebox],” Pujan "FNS" Mehta said in the post-match interview. “Not really playing fundamentally well. They were hitting their shots as well—we underestimated how good they were mechanically.”
“I was really frustrated after Map 1. I was like ‘man, please, guys, just let me call, let's play our game, let's play super slow.'” FNS also acknowledged that the team gets too comfortable against teams they feel are worse, something he made sure didn't happen on Ascent.
“We took a few things away from that match that I think we should work on and try to fix. Take it a little bit easy, enjoy the games, enjoy our success so far,” Jaccob "yay" Whiteaker said. Envy's most recent acquisition scored over 320 ACS across both maps.
“It's been amazing. It's crazy. I don't really feel pressured. I'm just enjoying playing and competing. I've just been really enjoying myself and just having fun.”
KRÜ are not out of the fight yet. They're play in the Group B decider match against either ZETA DIVISION or Vivo Keyd.
“I think we have a high chance of winning because we already won against ZETA DIVISION,” Nicolas "Klaus" Ferrari said, alluding to yesterday's 2-1 win. “We're ready, we train a lot. We know how [Vivo Keyd] plays, we know how ZETA plays.”
Smooth sailing for Envy on their way to playoffs (Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games).
The second match of the day was between Vision Strikers, the undisputed best of Korea, and Acend Acend Europe Rank #2 , a team some consider to be the best of Europe despite its #3 seed. It was also a very hyped confrontation: Mehmet "cNed" Yağız İpek, the Turkish Jett, considered, perhaps, one of the best in the world, against Yu "BuZz" Byung-chul (유병철), the Korean Jett.
BuzZ kept his humility high despite the title. “I'm very grateful for being given the title of ‘Korean Jett.' But, like [Yinsu Collins] said, there are many great players who are excellent at Jett so I still have a lot to learn and there's lots of room for improvement.”
Don't be fooled by BuzZ's words. His Jett carried Vision Strikers to a 13-7 on their Haven pick, with an excess of 200 ADR and eight entry duels won.
The Turkish Jett woke up more towards the middle of Icebox, as cNed put in star plays. Acend even took a pause at 10-8 down to hype themselves up, but they couldn't stop the Korea hype train from reaching the playoffs with a 13-9 win.
“I personally rated cNed very highly,” BuzZ confessed. “But during Haven, we felt that he underperformed so we realized that maybe he's not as wrong as we thought. During Icebox, even though I didn't perform as well, my teammates covered for me and we were able to win.”
Vision Strikers' win today guaranteed them a place in Champions. The team now has a minimum of 415 points, assuming they go out in the top 8, five more than Reykjavik representative NUTURN NUTURN Korea Rank #2 . F4Q are also a lock for the Korean LCQ, unless, of course, they lift the trophy in Berlin.
BuzZ was key in his team's win today, with a +6 first kill to first death differential (Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games).
“I'm very happy that our team made it to Champions but we still have many matches left in Berlin so we want to focus on those,” BuzZ said, revealing the team's short-term goal.
“I'm so happy about the win and, more importantly, for qualifying to Champions,” coach Pyeon "termi" Seon-ho said.
With playoffs secured, one question still lingers for Vision Strikers: where is Kim "Lakia" Jong-min (김종민)? The former NUTURN player returned to Vision Strikers in July but hasn't played in the Berlin LAN yet.
BuzZ unfurled the curtain on this situation. “We've hidden Lakia for the quarters, semis and the final. We expect him to come out during those matches and get MVP for all of them.”
They'll now await their playoffs opponent, a #2 seeded team from any other group but theirs.
“I said this before we left Korea as well. Gambit Esports Gambit Esports Europe Rank #1 [requires the most preparation]. Even in scrims they did so well. Our results are mostly similar but we've beaten almost all the teams here… Yes, even Sentinels,” termi finished, to the Korean broadcast's surprise.
“I mean, there's lots of teams we've beaten, or traded. But against Gambit, there was a loss that was so one-sided… they're very strong. Gambit bothers me a bit, the other teams all seem beatable,” termi said.One of the few glimmers of hope Acend had came from Aleksander "zeek" Zygmunt.
Up next were Sentinels and F4Q.
Split was the tightest map of the two, a bold pick by F4Q that didn't work out for them, losing it 13-9 as Hunter "SicK" Mims and Kim "Efina" Nak-yeon (김낙연) shared a kiss. Michael "dapr" Gulino pointed to him as a troublemaker in the broadcast interview.
“I think we had a solid grasp, we knew our retakes were really good. It took a minute to get used to the double Blast Pack [from Bunny], it caught us off guard a few times but we got the hang of it.” Bunny's trademark movement is one of the things he considers unique to him and his team.
“[It's] tough, because he has Skye flashes and other stuff around him,” dapr explained. “We learned we had to play really far back and respect it. If you kill [him] first, the rest of the team's going to be super far behind so it makes it easier.”
Regarding the second map, dapr said “[they] knew [F4Q] usually ban Breeze. So we were like ‘oh, we play Breeze.' You let it through, we'll pick it. We've scrimmed it a lot and we feel really comfortable. With Tyson going off like that, I wouldn't [pick it] either.”
What the sentinel player is referring to is Tyson "TenZ" Ngo's monstrous performance. Over the first half, 8-4, TenZ accumulated 453 ACS. By the time the map was over 13-4, he had increased that to 478 ACS and a 4.5 K:D ratio.TenZ was on point today.
Even that's a lot for TenZ. Surely he was just having a good day, right? Well, yes, but also...
“Oh yeah… [TenZ] is a psycho. He's like ‘yo, I just changed my mouse grip, I'm gonna go off' and then he drops 32 kills. He's built different like that.”
F4Q are now in a tough spot to advance from their group. They're last with no wins and a -22 round differential. They have to perform well and win both their remaining matches to make it out, but it's very much an uphill battle. They're not demotivated though.
“After today we're a lot more relaxed,” Bunny said. “We don't feel that much pressure to perform against G2. We were actually quite worried about [Sentinels] and how strong of a team they might be. After today, we realized it doesn't look too difficult. We're actually pretty confident for the next games.”
Bunny went on to say coming to Berlin was a dream come true for them, coming here as a group of streamers who just want to go out and have fun, which may have given them nerves for their first match against G2.
“I think for us to make it to the knockout stage we really have to relax during our matches and try and be less nervous. By doing that, I think we can make it to the next round.”
Sentinels, on the other hand, are extremely well placed for playoffs. Their two wins and +20 round differential places them first. One win is enough for them to secure first place in Group D.
The first two teams will also be eliminated tomorrow, in two Brazil vs. Japan matchups in Group B and C, respectively. First Vivo Keyd Vivo Keyd Brazil Rank #1 will play ZETA DIVISION ZETA DIVISION Asia-Pacific Rank #3 , followed by a game between Crazy Raccoon Crazy Raccoon Asia-Pacific Rank #4 and Havan Liberty Havan Liberty Brazil Rank #3 .
Tomorrow's matches are: