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Valorant Champions 2022 – OpTic Secures Top 3

This year’s Valorant Champions has been full of surprises, highlights and upsets. With that being said, it just seems like another day at the office for OpTic Gaming as they secure themselves a ticket to the winners’ final.

After defeating their fellow North American brethren in XSET, OpTic Gaming has confirmed their spot in the upper bracket final, guaranteeing them a Top 3 placing in the tournament standings. In addition to this, OpTic’s Jaccob “yay” Whiteaker—nicknamed “El Diablo”—received his fourth series-MVP of the tournament. Meaning that yay has been awarded MVP for every series OpTic has played so far in Istanbul.

CIVIL WAR

To begin the series, Map 1 would be XSET’s pick of Haven. OpTic seemed optimistic after winning the first two rounds but hopes were quickly shattered as XSET showed why they chose Haven as their map pick. Three consecutive rounds followed by another four consecutive rounds, XSET were truly dominating the first half of Haven, ending the half 8–4.

Now that OpTic was on offence, they knew that they could dictate the tempo of the game, and dictate they did. OpTic started off hot, or more rather, yay started off hot as he cleaned up XSET in the pistol round with an insane 4K. OpTic would go on to win the next three rounds back-to-back, but they weren’t done there. After XSET managed to take a round for themselves, the GreenWall managed another five consecutive rounds. Meaning that in the entire second half alone, yay and company only dropped one round before closing out Map 1, 13–9.

XSET ASCEND

Map 2 was Ascent, a map that we haven’t seen too much of OpTic on in recent months. OpTic had previously played XSET on this map twice back in Stage 2 Challengers where OpTic came out on top both times 13–11. Let’s just say that this time around was going to be similar in some ways but very different in others.

Although the guys in green managed to take the initial two rounds, XSET had maintained composure after losing the previous map and managed nine rounds back-to-back only losing the 12th and final round of the half. The first half ended in XSET’s favour 9–3.

With the second half underway, it looked like this could be a repeat of Map 1 as OpTic came out swinging once again, tieing the score 9–9 in no time. After losing one round and then answering with two of their own, the score now favoured OpTic 11–10, with only two rounds to secure the series win, XSET decided to change things up and boy did it work out in their favour. XSET managed to get the three rounds they needed to tie up the series 1–1, closing out the map 13–11 and sending OpTic to a Map 3.

The deciding map would be Pearl, the newest map in the VCT map rotation and a map we were yet to see these two North American powerhouses face off on. XSET began by winning the first two rounds. OpTic strook back with five rounds of their own, one of which being an intense 2v2 clutch.

OpTic close out the first half with the lead 8–4. The second half saw XSET redeem themselves as they went on a four-round win-streak, tieing the score 8–8. Unfortunately for the XSET boys, it just wasn’t enough as OpTic managed to take back momentum and win the next five rounds to close out the map 13–8, winning the series 2–1 and booking their ticket to the winners’ final.

OpTic Gaming will go on to face the Brazilian team in LOUD once again. A highly anticipated match-up as LOUD has lost the last three times these two teams have met. The game will be streamed at 10:00 PM (GMT+8) on 16 September so don’t miss it.

XSET worry not as this isn’t the end of the road. XSET will go on to face FunPlus Phoenix in the lower bracket quarterfinal as both teams fight to stay in the tournament. You can catch that game live on YouTube or Twitch at 1:00 AM (GMT+8) on 14 September.

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