Today is the second day of the Closed Qualifiers for Six Invitational 2020. Day 1 had lots of twists and turns including Salamander knocking out Penta, who were at Six Invitational 2019, Secret having 2 best of 3's going the full distance and Vitality vs BDS in a Best of 3 decided on the very last round of overtime of the very last map.
Looking forward, there are a total of 8 fixtures today.
Winners bracket (2 fixtures)
Lower bracket round 2 (4 fixtures)
Lower bracket round 3 (2 fixtures) - the winners of the 4 lower bracket fixtures.
CHAOS vs BDS
Starting with Chaos, they won 2-0 vs Pats Asleep. Now those familiar with Pats Asleep know that this isn't a surprising result given the differences in the teams, what is surprising actually though is how fragile Chaos were on Coastline - losing 6 rounds in a row from being 6-0 up. They managed to scrape to a win in Overtime and from there clutched the game out.
They followed that up with a very comfortable 2-0 win vs Orgless who were playing with 3 of their usual 5 players, following Cryn and Ripz depatures.
Chaos therefore haven't really been tested thus far and did drop a significant number of rounds vs Pats Asleep, a UK based team that aren't in the UK Prem.
BDS on the otherhand cruised past their T3 opponent of Ex Gameward. The EX GW team have been hit with departures and had two picksup playing in Undead and Noera - this clearly showed vs Shaiko and the boys in terms of lack of co-ordination and general synergy.
Following that breeze, BDS were forced to wait a good amount of time (probably 90 mins or so) before their next game vs Vitality. Vitality had struggled on Clubhouse and dropped the first map vs MKers and subsequently would be playing all 3 maps. What we waited for, was simply a treat, a best of 3 that played out 42 rounds of a maximum number of 45 rounds - ultimately being decided by a stubborn Bank server defence in the last round. Here is a link to the Youtube VOD if you want to see it:
In terms of a bans:
CHAOS Appear to be quite comfortable in their bans - banning 4 different maps out of 7 across the 2 x BO3's they play. Traditionally not liking Bank as a Pro League team.
BDS Almost always insta ban Villa, they then seem to dislike Consulate next.
I think BDS takes this win 2-0.
G2 vs Secret
G2 started the day seemingly on quite a straight path to a free win in Round 1. Yunktis did not appear on time to complete the banning phase, as per ESL rulebook when this happens the opponent can ban on behalf of said team.
This meant that G2 decided the first two bans and the first two map picks. As follows;
Yunktis ban Consulate (Decided by G2)
G2 ban Kafe
Yunktis pick Villa (Decided by G2 - G2 then choose DEF start and DEF OT start as Yunktis still not turned up to ban phase)
G2 pick Coastline
Yunktis then turned up to complete the banning properly.
G2 were coasting, Villa defensive start in the bag and Coastline to follow. Yunktis didn't read that script though, taking 3 attacks on to G2 with, in all honesty, some really sloppy stuff from G2 in terms of breach denial and just ability to trade effectively. Kanto did hit this absolutely nuts double to clutch a round in what looked like an unwinnable round.
Yunktis got 3 attacks total on a Villa attack, and then proceeded to go into a lead by utilising Clash that effectively it forced Pengu off of IQ and into Capitao to try and deal with her. G2 somehow scrambled across the line - getting it to overtime and then being able to clutch out thanks to starting on defence in OT.
The second game was much more of a shooty shooty bang bang game on Coastline, the strats are tried and tested and ultimately it comes down to who hits their shots - of course in which G2 came out on top. They're very good on Coastline.
Their second fixture, much more straight forward vs Salamander was 2 maps of shooty shooty bang bang again on Coastline and Border. Not too much to say here.
Secret on the other hand, played 6 maps in all against two formidable opponents. First up a Best of 3 vs MnM Gaming - a UK based team that have had a rise out of seemingly nothing unless you're very focussed on UK T3 scene - more on them later.
This best of 3 took us to Coastline, Consulate and Kafe. Honestly - I thought MnM would win this - they're comfortable on all maps. Secret prevailed though in what was a scrappy affair at times and 3 close maps that could have all gone either way. Secret definitely prevailed more on Coastline given that its more fluid and less checklisty than say Consulate, where they struggled more.
Secret then proceeded onto their second BO3 playing ForZe. This time they chose Kafe, ForZe chose Club and Bank decider. ForZe started the game living rent free in Secrets head, choosing to attack Kafe first and accumulating 3 wins on the attack before defending the map out. However Secret showed some real resilience on Clubhouse and Bank, ultimately taking the match overall - fair play to them too - they looked good for it.
In terms of bans:
G2's bans are relatively hard to read, given that they banned for Yunktis but effectively chose to eliminate Consulate, Kafe and Border, before then banning Clubhouse and Kafe. Although both of their picks have been Coastline so that may be of some indication.
Secret have banned Clubhouse, Consulate and Border x2 so far, picking Coastline and Kafe (they lost Kafe)
I would expect to see Coastline from these two and likely not see Border at all, as they both like Coast and neither like Border it seems.
Prediction : G2 2-0 Secret
Vitality vs Yunktis
Vitality struggled a bit vs MKERs and had an absolutely epic BO3 vs BDS. Yunktis on the other hand performed relatively well vs G2 and then went on to upset Penta winning 2-0 very comfortably (7-2,7-2).
I would expect Vitality to win this, in honesty as they are the much classier team. I think their role changes/roster changes will work in their favour once they iron out synergy/co-ordination.
Vitality banned Coastline & Consulate 2nd game and Border & Kafe 1st game (interestingly MKERs may have messed up bans here as MKERs banned Coast/Consulate 1st game). I would expect similar bans coming out of Vitality, they love Kafe, Villa and Bank.
Yunktis looked to ban Clubhouse every time, they don't seem to like Kafe either.
Realistically I think we then end up with something like Villa, Clubhouse and Bank decider. I think that leans into Vitality overall.
Prediction Vitality 2:0 Yunktis
Orgless vs MnM
The rcuth revenge tour. Just kidding - I think his split with Orgless was more than amicable.
Orgless have two subs popping up for these qualifiers - fRYKY (who has been in a lot of teams) and Alive - formerly of Supremacy. These pick ups means that the core 3 are having to alter roles (given fRYKY is running round on Ash/Jager) and in honesty, I'm really surprised that they beat Izidream. They got found out vs Chaos though and ultimately struggled.
MnM are a strong team, as mentioned previously. From what I have been told they are cracking down, learning the game to an extent that can be described as Empire like. Scrimming top teams and playing in a way that is "We are doing this - try and stop us".
They're not afraid to take gunfights and they're definitely one I'm expecting to be in CL Season 11. They narrowly lost vs a more experienced Secret and then they destroyed Patokalipsa in a heated affair with some "banter".
The "banter" relates to the fact that the Patokalipsa roster was significantly different to the last time these teams played in the open qualifiers. Then, Pato ran Gruby, Jagzy, Magic, Boogie2k and Jin. Last night they used Mefisto, Magic, Jagzy,Jin and KingVader. The reason this is significant is that Gruby has been commonly accused of hacking/cheating amongst the community - now I don't know if he is or not - however without him Patokalipsa lost 7-3, 7-2. On the other hand, when he was there they won 7-2 and he dropped 23 kills.
Anyway - back to the game in hand.
MnM prefer maps that start with a 'C' - Coast, Club, Consulate are what got them here, I expect those to be their choice of maps.
Orgless on the other hand don't seem to like Bank/Border. So i'd expect to see neither of them.
Prediction: MnM 2:0 Orgless
ForZe vs Izidream
ForZe comfortably beat Patokalipsa (without Gruby) and then lost an epic BO3 vs Secret as detailed above, not much more to see here. We all know how ForZe work, we have seen them at majors/CL.
Izidream struggled a lot vs Orgless after looking well in control, they then comfortably dispatched of Pats Asleep - managing to attack Kafe well.
Forze banned Coastline x2/Bank/Villa. Izi seem to dislike bank also - although the remaining maps all look playble to me. It will likely be 3/5 of Border, Clubhouse, Consulate, Kafe, Villa.
Prediction Forze 2:0 Izidream
Salamander vs Ex GW
Salamander with a mixed bag last night - they beat Penta first up in what was a relatively comfortable game. They went to OT on Kafe, winning because of the defences in OT falling to them in ban phase - Penta then ridiculously took them to their best map in Clubhouse. (Penta do you need an analyst yo?) They won Clubhouse comfortably.
They then came up against G2 in two maps of shooty shooty bang bang, which is where they failed in winning straight up gunfights vs G2.
Gameward again, with a bit of a mixed bag. I didn't watch their first game vs BDS where they really struggled. Their second game vs Mkers they won - although wasn't streamed therefore I don't have the luxury of commenting - although they won 7-2/7-5 on Coast/Club. Coast one of their better maps
Salamander dislike Consulate , so expect that banned. GW dislike Bank - so same with that or Villa.
I'd expect to see Border/Coast as GW pick, then probably Club as Salamanders meaning we're likely to see a 3rd map of Kafe/Villa
Prediction: Salamander 2:1 Ex GW.
LOWER BRACKET PLAYDAY 2
Expecting the results happen above, that leaves:
MnM vs Vitality - what a game this could be. I think MnM win this 2-1 in a cracking game
Forze vs Salamander - I think Forze beat Salamander comfortably 2-0, should it be Gameward I would expect the same.