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Astralis and Team liquid move on to the Grand Finals at IEM Chicago 2018.
- Updated: November 11, 2018
The penultimate day at IEM Chicago 2018 saw some really exciting Counter-Strike throughout the day. The first semifinal was between Astralis and Fnatic and it went down to the wire.
Astralis and Fnatic: An exciting thriller of a series.
Both the teams won their respective map picks, although the final score was way too close for comfort. The first map saw Astralis win Dust 2 with a score of 16-14. It was not until the very last round that we had an idea of who would win. Initially, Astralis had all the right ideas as they were rolling over Fnatic through the first half. We could see how Astralis’ confidence was through the roof and they were ablet o use their better T side economy to cripple Fnatic’s CT side. They won the first half without question with a 12-3 scoreline.
Twist came out with the big guns on this map essentially dominating Astralis with his superior aim in the second half. The player who has been on the Swedish teams’ radar for a long time proved his worth at this LAN event. However as is throughout the series, we saw Fnatic’s old guard in JW and Krimz coming out very strong with their individual performances. The open nature of Dust 2 essentially meant that the Fnatic team was able to leverage its superior aim over Astralis. The new additions in Twist and Brollan were able to roll over the map for the most part.
Fnatic mounted a strong comeback taking the score from 3-14 to 14-15. However, Astralis won the last round and crushed the Swedes’ hopes for Dust 2.
Mirage and Inferno.
The next two maps would continue to see the two teams play an extremely close playstyle. While Fnatic won Mirage with relative ease, the final map of Inferno saw a very exciting finish. Fnatic dominated Astralis the entire game to take the score to 15-9. However, they let go of their guard after reaching 15 rounds. They essentially allowed Astralis into the map with unchecked pushes and handing them the map. Astralis made a comeback from 15-9 to 15-15. In Overtime, both the teams start out on an even footing, but Astralis had the momentum. They won the map and the series breaking the Swedes hopes of reaching the Grand finals at IEM Chicago 2018.
Fnatic looked excellent in this series and in all probability, they should have won Inferno and the series. However, they were extremely lacklustre in the last few rounds allowing Astralis into the game and the series. For the future, Fnatic does look like it has a bright future. However, Astralis marched on to the Grand finals at IEM Chicago after a miraculous comeback.
Team Liquid dominates Faze Clan in the semifinals.
Team Liquid went into the second semifinals with Faze Clan dominating the first map. Inferno has been one of the stronger maps for Faze Clan in the past and they exhibited the reasons why. The Faze Clan’s performance throughout the first map was a quick flashback as to why the team is one of the strongest teams when it comes to their raw firepower. However, despite this win, Team Liquid did not give up.
They went into the second map, Mirage with a steely resolve. Twistzz and Elige were on top of their game and they were not afraid to take risks to get the frags. Constantly putting Faze Clan out of position and not allowing them to be comfortable, Team Liquid unravelled the entire Faze Clan offence.
Faze Clan looked extremely confused with their executes. For the most part, they were only searching for any knowledge of Team Liquid’s position. Team Liquid was extremely dominant throughout the map and won the map with eventual ease and a scoreline of 16-1. If it were not for Niko’s insane headshot, they would have won 16-0.
Team Liquid continued their dominance into the third map winning it with a score of 16-4. While Team Liquid did look extremely dominant, it was more of Faze showing no chemistry or synergy in their retakes and offence that cost them the map.
Team liquid will face off against Astralis in the Grand finals of IEM Chicago 2018.