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Paper Rex Sent Home By Cloud9 At VCT 2023: LOCK//IN

During the first round of VCT LOCK//IN in São Paulo, Cloud9 from North America faced off against Singapore’s Paper Rex in a highly anticipated VALORANT match.

Both teams were considered some of the best in their regions, with players who had already experienced success in international VCT events. Cloud9, in particular, was being called the American “super-team.”

During the VALORANT offseason, they kept their core players – in-game leader Vanity, initiator Xeppaa, and top-fragger leaf – and added yay (who was nicknamed El Diablo for his dominance in professional scrims) and Zellsis to boost the roster.

Paper Rex managed to make it through VALORANT franchising without any changes to their roster, which is a rare feat. The team’s five members have been through a lot together and have developed a unique playstyle based on their strong synergy.

However, both coach alecks and player Benkai revealed at a pre-tournament press conference that Paper Rex had been struggling in their scrims in 2023. For their first match in the tournament, Paper Rex opted to choose VALORANT’s newest map, Lotus.

Despite doubts about Chamber’s effectiveness due to multiple nerfs, both f0rsakeN and yay still used him in the first map, with no Jett in sight.

 

Game 1 – Lotus

The first half of the Lotus map was just as exciting as everyone predicted, with both teams going back and forth and the rounds feeling unpredictable and chaotic. Paper Rex managed to pull Cloud9 into action, and the tension was high.

However, Xeppaa wasn’t fazed by the chaos and managed to pull off a massive clutch play in VALORANT, which had everyone watching cheering in excitement.

Despite unexpected thrifty rounds and unpredictable situations on the map, it became increasingly apparent that Cloud9 was pulling ahead. Xeppaa continued to showcase his Skye skills, and yay made a comeback to his old form, ending the map with a remarkable 48% headshot percentage.

 

Game 2 – Pearl

PRX struggled to find their footing on the Pearl map. Cloud9 surprised everyone with their composition for this match, putting Zellsis on Phoenix and yay on Sage. It was clear that the team had a strategy in mind for Pearl.

Cloud9 continued to dominate, winning rounds on the attack and wiping out everyone on the PRX side. Unlike previous matches where other members played a support role for yay, frags were more evenly distributed in this match, with leaf and Xeppaa top fragging in the first half.

C9 appeared stronger than ever, with a wealth of credits each round that allowed them to choose any weapon they wanted. In contrast, PRX had to make do with weaker weapons for many rounds in a row, making it impossible for them to get a solid grip on the first half of the map.

Cloud9 achieved a remarkable victory over Paper Rex. Xeppaa’s outstanding performance in the sixteenth round was the cherry on top that helped Cloud9 secure the win. The match finished with a 13-4 score in favour of Cloud9, and Paper Rex was eliminated from the tournament.

In the next round, Cloud9 will face off against DRX, the leading VALORANT team from Korea. Fans eagerly await this exciting match, which will take place on 19 February at 1:00 AM (UTC+8).

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