In a stark contrast to the blowout that was Team Liquid defeating Oxygen earlier in the day, Fnatic VALORANT won a much closer affair over Gambit in the semifinals of the EMEA Challengers Finals. With their victory, Fnatic have secured themselves a spot along with Liquid at the Masters Two Reykjavík LAN at the end of May.
Map one on Icebox was a surprisingly one-sided (13-6) contest on behalf of Fnatic, as for the second series in a row, the team with the first map pick lost badly. Newest addition Nikita “Derke” Sirmitev, less than a month into his Fnatic tenure, had a splendid map on Jett.
Gambit looked keen on stealing back a map on Fnatic’s pick of Bind, with a commanding 9-3 lead at halftime after their defensive side. But Fnatic answered back with an even more impressive showing on defense, winning 10 of the next 12 rounds to comeback and take the map 13-11, and the series 2-0. Derke had another great game on Bind, this time on Sova, and was supplemented by a superb performance from Domagoj “Doma” Fancev on Raze.
Fnatic and Team Liquid will face off on Sunday, May 2 in a best-of-five grand finals for bragging rights and more prize money, but the mission is accomplished. With the top two spots in the EMEA Challengers Finals obtained, their place at Masters Two has been secured.