It’s the start of the EPICENTER Finals, with two teams that haven’t been doing too well recently facing each other in a lethal and closely-fought encounter.
Yes, this was where the oft-maligned Virtus.pro made their stand to prove they were a team that could still be champions… and lost. And where SK Gaming took the same stand to prove the same thing… and won!!!
Read all about it…
EPICENTER Finals –
Match 1 – Mirage
The first Match played was in SK Gaming’s pick, Mirage. They were playing as terrorists. Virtus.pro started out strong, butchering SK int the first five rounds. SK Gaming hit back in the sixth round, with boltz and fer going aggressive and killing all Virtus.pro players.
In the next round, Virtus.pro were taking no chances
They killed off boltz and fer right off. But they still lost, being butchered in the next round.
Now Virtus.pro was forced to go eco. SK was putting out some great plays. TACO killed two Virtus.pro players before jumping into the bomb-site and planting the bomb.
SK had finally hit their stride, and were now playing VERY well
The score was Virtus.pro 5, and SK 4.
In the tenth round, SK was fully equipped, and Virtus.pro went in semi-equipped. Virtus.pro played lethally and won the round.
The eleventh round had some good plays from FalleN, with a double kill, but Virtus.pro’s domination continues.
NEO of Virtus.pro took a triple kill in the twelfth round, and Virtus.pro’s rush for victory in this match continued. Virtus.pro was playing with two AWPs by this time – both pashaBiceps and Snax were carrying AWP.
This continued till the score was 9:4 in favor of Virtus.pro
Then SK Gaming, on eco, facing a fully-equipped Virtus.pro, shooting into a smoke cloud against Virtus.pro defending a planted bomb, killed the entire Virtus.pro team. SK were now equipped at last.
It didn’t help them. SK Gaming lost time trading fire in the last round of the first half, but then had to rush the bomb-site, and Virtus.pro coolly gunned them down.
The first half ended in favor of Virtus.pro 10:5.
In the second half…
NEO of Virtus.pro, now playing as Counter Terrorists, took a triple kill at the closely-bunched SK Gaming team. The game moved forward into total domination by Virtus.pro. In the eighteenth round, Virtus.pro was leading 11:5, with SK gaming going eco. Of course, Virtus.pro won.
SK won the nineteenth round in a desperate battle where all the members of both teams decimated each other.
In round twenty FalleN killed off pashaBiceps right in the beginning, stealing his AWP. What followed was a slaughter of the Virtus.pro team, with coldzera taking a triple kill.
Now in round 21 Virtus.pro was on eco
SK had two AWPs. Almost all SK’s weapons were steals at this point. Fer killed off 4 opposing players. Fallen came in in the next round with a double kill. Virtus.pro was being crushed.
SK Gaming’s brutal come-back continued, with a complete, five-minute massacre of the whole Virtus.pro team in round 23.
Then in round 24 Virtus.pro won, planting the bomb while losing 3 team members. With the score 14:10, they now needed only 2 rounds to win. Virtus.pro then took round 25. They now needed just one round to win.
This would be the last round of the match
Snax killed Fallen and TACO, then the rest of the SK Gaming team were quickly decimated, on SK Gaming’s best map.
One thing was sure. In these EPICENTER Finals, Virtus.pro, after months of losing, had returned.
EPICENTER Finals –
Match 2 – Inferno
Now Inferno, Virtus.pro’s pick, began. And Virtus.pro fell apart in the pistol round, with SK Gaming butchering them with just one loss.
In the next round, SK had SMGs and rifles, and full armor and helmets against Virtus.pro with pistols. PashaBiceps killed two of SK before going down.
Now the teams were two on two
Coldzera killed two Virtus.pro members, but Virtus.pro still won the round because the bomb went off.
SK went into the next round the next round with just one SMG, while Virtus.pro were now on a full-equip. Snax took a triple kill and Virtus.pro took the round. In the next round, Snax again took triple kills in straight out open firefights. Snax was on a roll, killing SK players effortlessly. Snax killed the last remaining SK Gaming player, fer, and Virtus.pro took the round.
Round 5 had both teams on a full-equip
They were shooting through the smoke, taking the risk of a hit. The score was Virtus.pro 3 and SK 1. SK took the round, killing all opponents and taking the round.
In round 6, FalleN, always a top AWPer, took out NEO. It was a good start, and SK Gaming took the round. Boltz managed to grab an AK-47.
Coldzera started out the next round by kill NEO, and boltz killed Snax. Coldzera went on to take two more kills. The score was 4:3 in favor of SK Gaming.
Virtus.pro went anti-eco in the next round. And were killed to the last man.
At round 9 there was a full equip for both teams
NEO killed boltz and fer, and the rest of the team went down quickly after that. Virtus.pro won the round, AND stole all the fallen weapons.
Virtus.pro had begun to hit back. NEO and byali took double kills, and Virtus.pro had another round.
In the eleventh round SK were reduced to pistols, killed everyone, and defused the bomb!
In round 12 both teams were equipped. They began trading kills, two each. SK fought very well, and had two players left at the end, but they couldn’t defuse the bomb, and Virtus.pro won.
A good effort by SK took the next round
Their score was now 7:6. Virtus.pro went eco on the fourteenth round. Three died almost immediately. SK took the round, despite some brave fighting from TaZ.
SK took the last round of the first half to bring the score to 9:6. Still not much of a lead, of course.
In the second half…
Boltz and coldzera fought like heroes in the pistol round, and took it for SK Gaming. In the next round, both sides traded kills, and SK’s bomb went off and they won.
Virtus.pro were reduced to pistols, while SK were on a full-equip. SK took the eighteenth round. They now only needed four rounds to win.
SK Gaming took the nineteenth round
PashaBiceps tried to save his weapon, but was found and killed.
Virtus.pro only had pistols, and no armor. SK just needed three rounds to win. They took this round, and now only needed two to win. The score was now 14:6.
Both teams entered the next round with a full-equip
Boltz and fer died early, but only Snax remained on the other team. He planted the bomb, a brave effort, but he was killed, and SK won.
Only one round remained for SK to win
Round 22. Both teams bought as much equipment as they could for this defining round. Fer and NEW fell early. Kills were traded after that. SK Gaming dominated in this map, killing all opponents and taking the match.
EPICENTER Finals –
Match 3 – Train
SK Gaming picked train, and naturally enough, they were defeated in the pistol round. SK were playing as terrorists. Virtus.pro took the first two rounds fairly easily. SK went into the third round on pistols. And died to a man. Virtus.pro was on a roll… again.
The next round was a full equip for both teams, with Virtus.pro carrying two AWP, and Snax and pasha carrying them. Virtus.pro took that round, massacring SK.
In the fifth round FalleN killed pasha with a Scout
It didn’t help SK – they were butchered anyway. Virtus.pro were leading the match 5:0.
Now there was a full equip by both sides. Virtus.pro again carried two AWPs. SK lost again.
Round 7 brought another full equip by both teams. TACO died almost instantly, but boltz took two kills. But died almost instantly. With traded kills it was two on two. SK Gaming’s bomb went off, and they won the round.
Round 8 – another full equip!
Virtus.pro killed everyone. Yes, that sums up the match. FalleN, hitting back where he could, got two kills, but lost his weapon when he got killed. Perhaps he should have played safe and kept it.
Pasha swept into round 9 with a triple kill, and Virtus.pro followed him into the round, giving SK no chance. The score was now 8:1.
SK were down to pistols
And dying like flies.
Nevertheless, both teams came back in the next round with a full equip. Virtus.pro wasn’t fazed, and took the round without a single loss!
In the twelfth round, SK put up a great fight, with only pistols, but went down.
The score was 11:1
Both teams came in with a full equip in the next round, BOTH toting two AWPs. SK made a great effort in this round, almost even winning, but still died to the last map.
In the fourteenth round, SK finally won another round with some very good teamwork, killing pasha on AWP early, and then decimating Virtus.pro.
In the last round of the first half, fer took three kills in quick succession to give the round to SK.
And that was the first half, 12:3 in favor of Virtus.pro. A disaster for SK Gaming. But the second half was still to come.
In the second half…
In the pistol round, Virtus.pro missed a Molotov throw, and two of them were efficiently gunned down by boltz. The other SK players backed him up, and SK Gaming took the round.
The score was 12:4
In the next round, boltz was the first to die. It didn’t faze SK – they butchered Virtus.pro to take the round.
In round 18 Snax was against boltz and TACO. Snax picked up the bomb and killed boltz, and planted the bomb and killed TACO to take the round for Virtus.pro. These were very confused rounds.
In the next round, 19, byali was the only one remaining of Virtus.pro to two remaining SK players, who sneaked up on him as he planted the bomb, and shot him in the back as he did it.
Virtus.pro went eco in round 20 with just pistols
They were quickly killed, with just Snax remaining at the last. Then he died, and SK won.
SK were noticeably happier by this point.
Both the teams were fully equipped in round 21, and Snax was the first to die. TACO, FalleN and boltz made a great team effort and decimated Virtus.pro.
Virtus.pro were still eco in the next round
The score was still 13:8 in favor of Virtus.pro. Round 22, and Virtus.pro went down again to a massive team effort from SK Gaming.
Round 23 – a full equip by both teams, and fer took a triple kill ruthlessly and VERY efficiently. Finally pasha was the only one left. He sneaked around, looking lost, until fer stepped up behind him and coldly shot him in the back of the head.
The score was 13:10, still in favor of Virtus.pro
Things were going very well for SK, playing with rifles, but they suddenly went AWP in the twenty-fourth round, carrying two AWPs, and getting butchered. People never know when things are going well.
SK Gaming came back hard in the twenty-fifth round, and, with two players left in each team, boltz coolly took two kills to win the round for SK Gaming.
The score was 14:11 in favor of Virtus.pro
SK took the next round. Virtus.pro were still leading, but SK was still somehow making a come-back.
Worse, in round 27, Virtus.pro had to go eco. Boltz took three kills, and fer two.
The score was 14:13. SK needed just one point to break even.
Both teams went full equip in round 28. Fer took two kills, but then fer and boltz were dead, and it was three on three. Snax – quite simply – killed everyone to win the round for Virtus.pro.
The score was 15:13
Brilliant play by boltz, well backed up, pushed their score to 15:14.
NEO and byali didn’t have rifles. SK had a full equip. NEO went down, then TaZ. SK Gaming won the round.
The match went into overtime!
Coldzera killed three opponents in series. Fer took three kills, but Virtus.pro couldn’t plant the bomb, and lost the first round of overtime.
Virtus.pro bought two AWPs in the second round of overtime. Both teams butchered each other, but boltz took the last kill to take the round.
Virtus.pro hit back hard in the next round, dropping boltz among the first, then taking out the rest to take the round.
In round 4 of overtime, both sides carried two AWPs. SK Gaming charged the Virtus.pro camp, killing them with precision shooting one by one. One more round for SK Gaming.
The score was now 18:16 in favor of SK Gaming
The tables had finally turned. Virtus.pro had to force a second overtime, or lose the match.
FalleN dropped two players – on a guess – and took the match for SK Gaming.
EPICENTER Finals –
Match 4 – Cache
Virtus.pro chose this match, and are supposed to be very good at it, according to their stats.
SK were terrorists
Virtus.pro took the pistol round – effortlessly.
In the next round, Virtus.pro went with a full-equip, of course. Very quickly, FalleN had… fallen. Kills were traded until it was two on two. Finally it was TaZ against boltz, and TaZ put down smoke and defused the bomb to take the round for Virtus.pro
The third round had semi-equip SK, and a full equip for Virtus.pro. Kills were traded so that it was TaZ against FalleN in the end, and TaZ took the kill.
Now SK were reduced to Deagles
SK fell again.
The score was 4:0.
Round 5 was a full-equip, and pasha died early. TaZ was next. Then came the usual trade of kills. The bomb setter was killed setting the bomb, and Virtus.pro took the fifth round.
Sixth round, and pasha died again. Fer took three kills, and SK took a round at last.
In the next round, Virtus.pro had Deagles, while SK had a full-equip. SK quickly lost three people, but hit back hard to win the round.
Round 8, and fer took a triple kill again
SK quickly took out the remaining players to take the match.
Round 9, and the score was 5:3 in favor of SK Gaming. Fer takes another triple kill! Then another, making it a quadruple kill.
He played like a god, invincible, butchering opponents, massacring opponents effortlessly.
Virtus.pro were done to pistols. SK had a full-equip. SK took the round.
In round 10 SK Gaming tied the round 5:5
In the next round, it was a full-equip, with Virtus.pro carrying two AWP. Snax took a melee sniper kill, but the whole team but pasha were decimated. Pasha tried to hide to save his AWP. SK took the round.
SK bought the full store for the next round. They could afford it. Pasha had is AWP – Virtus.pro didn’t have anything but that.
SK Gaming continued to dominate to the twelfth round, with the score at 7:5 in favor of SK Gaming.
The next round was a full equip for both teams, and two people with AWP on Virtus.pro. Byali took a triple kill. Coldzera tried to fight back, but went down.
Virtus.pro took the round
Trading kills in round 14, all the members of Virtus.pro went down, and NEO had to retreat. The bomb went off, and SK Gaming won the round.
The score was 8:6 in favor of SK Gaming in the last round of the first half. Virtus.pro members went down very quickly under fer, who took three kills, including pasha, who was the last to survive. It seems you can run, but you can’t hide.
In the second half…
SK were Counter-Terrorists. SK were butchered in pistol, until only boltz was left – who still took a double kill before going down.
Virtus.pro had a partial equip here, a combination of SMGs and rifles. NEO killed two. The bomb was placed, and only boltz remained from SK Gaming. The bomb went off, and Virtus.pro won the round without a single loss.
The next round, Virtus.pro took the round, and the score was 9:9.
Round 19, and a full-equip for both teams
Three quickly died on each team. Pasha and byali butchered the remaining SK members to take the round. And the next round. Snax took a double kill before going down.
A full equip on round 21, with the score at 11:9 in favor of Virtus.pro. SK brought two AWPs to the mix. Two went down quickly on each team. Byali played very well, lightning fast. But FalleN took two kills, and that turned the tables. SK took the round, at last.
Virtus.pro hit back hard, and FalleN with great difficulty was the only survivor of SK Gaming, but he saved an AWP.
By round 22, the score was 12:10 in favor of Virtus.pro.
SK Gaming took a tactical time-out
They were in definite danger of losing the match.
It didn’t do them much good. NEO got a double kill, and Virtus.pro took the next round.
Now in round 25, it was a force-buy for SK Gaming. They had no other option. And they all died.
Virtus.pro was 15 – SK Gaming were 10.
Virtus.pro now needed just one round to win. SK made a calm and determined attempt, and Virtus.pro seemed to be far too overconfident. They risked too much, and went down before SK Gaming.
Virtus.pro took a tactical pause, their last
And intense fight, all members going all out. SK Gaming killed all the Virtus.pro players, and took the round.
The score was now 15:12 in favor of Virtus.pro.
SK Gaming know how to fight hard.
A full-equip by both teams for the next round
A very, very tough battle. Virtus.pro took the round – and this match of the EPICENTER Finals.
EPICENTER Finals –
Match 4 – Cobblestone
SK Gaming were Terrorists, and took the pistol round, and the round after that. And the round after that, and Fer took three kills.
In the fourth round, it was a full-equip for both teams. And Virtus.pro decimated SK Gaming, AND stole their AWP! And the fifth round belonged to Virtus.pro as well, with pasha taking three kills.
The score was Virtus.pro – 2 and SK Gaming at 3
Virtus.pro dominated again in the next round, and the score was even. In round NEO took four kills to take the round for Virtus.pro.
In round 8 both teams went for a full-buy. Virtus.pro played very carefully, and finally there were two players on each side, each trying to bluff the other out into the open. Again, Virtus.pro killed their opponents to take the round. And the next round.
The score was now 6:3 in favor of Virtus.pro. Their game-play was incredible – there was nothing SK could have done to fight back. They were all but helpless before Virtus.pro.
Both teams went into round 11 with a full-buy, with the score at 7:3 in favor of Virtus.pro.
SK now fought back ferociously
They took that round, and set off the bomb, but Snax managed to save his AWP.
The score was 7:4. Both teams were fully equipped. And fought carefully. And ferociously.
Virtus.pro won the round! SK was in a very bad state now.
Then Virtus.pro became overconfident, separating, each going their own way. SK Gaming caught them singly, and killed them all.
Round 13, with the score 8:5
SK took the next round as well. SK Gaming seemed to be figuring out the dynamics of facing Virtus.pro in Cobblestone. The last round of the first half, and Virtus.pro had pistols against SK Gaming’s full-buy. It was STILL a desperate battle, with boltz and NEO facing each other one on one at the last.
Boltz killed NEO. The score was 8:7.
In the second half…
Virtus.pro were terrorists now. NEO killed four in the pistol round, and byali killed coldzera. Virtus.pro took the pistol round.
SK Gaming were going to find it very difficult to pull a win out of this debacle. Naturally, they were butchered in the next round.
Round 17, and the score was 10:7 in favor of Virtus.pro.
And the next round went their way as well.
SK Gaming won the next round, surprisingly enough, with some luck and very good teamwork, one distracting the opponent while the other killed him from behind.
The score was still 11:8 in favor of Virtus.pro
Coldzera came in strong in round 20, and killed three opponents from a very good angle. Pasha took one look at that, and hid in a truck to save his AWP. SK won the round.
The economics went SK Gaming’s way now. SK had a full-equip against Virtus.pro’s basic equip. And Virtus.pro set off the bomb.
The round was 22, and the score was 12:9
Both teams had a full-buy. It was a brutal battle. SK Gaming killed every opponent, but the bomb still went off. Virtus.pro won the round.
SK were reduced to pistols. Virtus.pro all had AK-47s.
The score was 14:9
Virtus.pro needed just two rounds to win.
Naturally, both teams went for a full-buy. SK took the round to bring their score to 10.
Virtus.pro were on eco, so SK won the next round as well, without a single loss.
The score was now 14:11 in favor of Virtus.pro
Both teams took a full-buy. SK took the round, with some brilliant play. SK were back. SK’s score were up to 14. Virtus.pro were still on eco on the next round. Virtus.pro were butchered. Snax killed boltz and took his AK-47, but he died shortly after.
The score was 14:13 in favor of Virtus.pro
Now it was the full buy. SK lost the round, butchered by Virtus.pro. Virtus.pro now had 15 rounds, and needed just one to win.
Round 29, and full buys for both teams, with two AWPs for SK Gaming. SK Gaming fought brilliantly, winning the round.
If SK Gaming won the next round, the match would go into overtime.
Yes, the match – and the EPICENTER Finals – were this close
Virtus.pro clumped together – and were butchered together, right at the beginning of the round.
The match went into Overtime
Virtus.pro bounced back aggressively, slaughtering SK. In the next round Fer single-handedly faced the entire Virtus.pro team, and fought them off, killing two and escaping unharmed. He was later killed, but took out another player as he died. SK won the round.
The score was tied at 16:16
Virtus.pro came back with a deadly set of kills, taking the next round. In the next round byali took three kills with deadly patience. Virtus.pro just needed one round to win.
The score was 18:16 in favor of Virtus.pro
Now into the fifth round of overtime with a full buy. SK started a massive slaughter, killing the whole team but NEO. They hunted him down and killed him, winning the round.
Now if Virtus.pro won the next round, they would win the event!
If SK won, the match would go into a second overtime.
Virtus.pro killed off three members of SK to start. SK hit back to take out three members of Virtus.pro. TaZ died next. Only one was left of Virtus.pro. Snax remained. Now Snax died under FalleN.
THE SECOND OVERTIME!!
SK Gaming fought brilliantly. Three members were left with hardly any HP, but still killed off the enemy team with great marksmanship. SK Gaming took the next match as well, with boltz defeating Snax in a straight-out firefight – not many people could do that.
The score was 20:18 in favor of SK Gaming
SK Gaming then took the next round as well! And then the next round.
SK GAMING WON THE EPICENTER FINALS AGAINST ALL ODDS!
This was one of the most closely-fought wins of all time. Virtus.pro’s loss is heart-breaking, since this was their big chance of a come-back. But SK Gaming are back on top of the world!
Credit for all images: EPICENTER and Twitch. With gratitude.