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Vitality end Astralis’ hopes of defending Major title

Vitality have managed to send home the defending Major Champions Astralis and move onto tomorrow’s 2-2 matches in the hopes of securing a spot in the playoffs. Both sides have been disappointing thus far at the event and this series reflected the underwhelming form of both teams, albeit providing exciting back-and-forth action.

In the absence of set plays and tactics, individual performances and scrappy gameplay prevailed as ZywOo rose to the occasion after not having the superstar performances expected of him in the French side’s opening matches. For Astralis, the loss ended their Major Championship streak of three, dating back to the FACEIT Major in 2018.

apEX breathes a sigh of relief after Vitality victory

Nuke began with some early tech pauses, but once the half got going Vitality took advantage of an Astralis that looked lost on their own pick. Adding insult to injury, Andreas “⁠Xyp9x⁠” Højsleth had a shocking start to the map, only finding his first of three kills in the half on round 13. Player cams showed an upbeat and relaxed Vitality who led 11-4 at the half. ZywOo began to perform to the level that is expected from the young star as the French side stole away their opponents’ pick 16-10.

Although Vitality had hoped to close out the series on their pick, the Danish side kept it competitive heading onto Vertigo. Astralis put a string of rounds together on their CT that was only halted from a 1v2 out of ZywOo. Vitality went missing during the middle portion of the map but did not completely give in, taking Astralis the distance. The scrappiness continued as the Danes edged out the map 16-14 to take things onto Dust 2.

The first half of Dust 2 went back and forth as each team made many mistakes with rounds coming down to individual performances instead of tactics or set plays. Vitality nonetheless mustered a strong 10-5 CT half, only for Astralis to come right back in for a nailbiting end to the series. Eventually, a 2v2 hold by Richard “⁠shox⁠” Papillon and Jayson “⁠Kyojin⁠” Nguyen Van got Vitality on the brink of victory and on to an eventual 16-13 closeout.


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