- March 26, 2018
Virtus.pro are showing some exceptional plays these days, and while they haven’t quite lost their aura of occasional incompetence, they’re still doing better than they’ve done in a long while. Their road upwards more or less began at the Finals of EPICENTER last year, where they duked it out round for round with an SK Gaming that were – at that point – at the very top of their form. They lost the EPICENTER Finals, but not by much, and had the cards fallen a little differently, could well have won that event.
History repeats itself as Virtus.pro clash in the Finals of an event once again, at the V4 Future Sports Festival. Fans of Virtus.pro can rest assured that their team has finally come out of hibernation, and hungry for a win. Yes, Virtus.pro have lost these Finals once again, but that’s a lot better than being booted from the group stages, which was what was beginning to happen to them with dismal regularity over the last year.
Nevertheless, while Virtus.pro have shown that they can still play CS:GO, that can’t hold a candle to the capability that mousesports have shown over the last year. While Virtus.pro may indeed have reached the Finals of the V4 Future Sports Festival, mousesports victory there was… inevitable.
Mousesports now becomes the first team to win two majors in a row this year. Their first win was against Natus Vincere at Season Four of the StarLadder & i-League StarSeries, and now they have won the very first V4 Future Sports Festival. The Grand Finals here were supposed to be a best of five series, but after consulting with the teams, the organizers changed that to a best of three. This change of plans is really rather admirable, and really a first of sorts, where the organizers were considerate enough to change the format of an event after actually consulting the teams involved.
How did Virtus.pro make it to the Finals?
As we predicted earlier, group B was more or less entirely dominated by mousesports. Nevertheless, Virtus.pro were certainly the second best team in that group. They lost only two matches in the run up to the Finals, one against eXtatus and one against mousesports, while also winning one match against each of those teams.
The group matches in the V4 Future Sports Festival were all best of twos. The second best team in each group at this event were placed opposite the best team in the opposite group, which placed Virtus.pro in an epic face-off with FaZe Clan.
Their confrontation with FaZe was a best of three
Cache, Nuke and Mirage were the maps chosen. No one thought that Virtus.pro could defeat FaZe Clan in a map in which they are considered invincible. The first match was a close one, and Virtus.pro were almost equal to FaZe Clan in the first half. However, as terrorists, Virtus.pro were all but unstoppable, and they put FaZe under while giving them just two rounds.
The next map was Nuke and it was chosen by Virtus.pro. Nevertheless, Nuke ranks among FaZe Clan’s best maps. FaZe Clan took the first half of the match by one round. But MICHU and pashaBiceps showed some wonderful plays, and took down FaZe Clan in the second half, while again giving them just two rounds. The best of three was decided in just two matches. This makes this the second time FaZe Clan have gone down in a best of three in just two matches.
Mousesports almost lost the Semifinals to HellRaisers
Mirage, Cobblestone and Inferno were chosen as battlefields for mousesports and HellRaisers in the Semifinals. HellRaisers are not to be underestimated, as they have massively upgraded their capabilities, in keeping with a lot of pro teams over the last six months or so. They even defeated FaZe Clan once in the group A matches.
The match to qualify for the Finals started, and HellRaisers won eight out of fifteen rounds in the first half. HellRaisers live up to their name in pro play, sometimes dominating a match on sheer aggression and adrenalin. However, that’s also a weakness, and tends to fail against pro teams that balance aggression with tactics and strategy. That’s just what happened here, as mousesports dissected their plays in the first half, and put them under the turf in the second half, winning Mirage by two rounds.
HellRaisers really do seem to have no concept of strategy
They simply stormed into Cobblestone in a repeat of their plays in Mirage. While mousesports are hardly to be considered ‘at home’ on Cobblestone, they are a brutally professional team. Nevertheless, HellRaisers won the first half once again, leading by eight rounds. Mousesports then lashed out in the second half, taking the match by three rounds. However, it wasn’t what one might call an easy win. Had HellRaisers used some tactics and strategy, they may well have won the match.
Mousesports Vs Virtus.pro, bans and picks for the Finals
Both teams decided to ban their weakest map in the Finals. So mousesports banned Cache, and Virtus.pro banned Overpass. Mousesports decided to pick Mirage, because they saw how well Virtus.pro play Nuke. Virtus.pro decided to go for Cobblestone since mousesports hardly excel there. In the remaining bans, mousesports themselves banned their best offline map, Nuke, and Virtus.pro banned Inferno. Train was left over and became the decider match here, as it almost always is in most events.
Mousesports put Virtus.pro down hard in Mirage
Mousesports started the match by winning the first pistol round, and thanks to oskar they even managed to take the second round. Virtus.pro didn’t seem to be able to stop mousesports, and kept losing till round five. Round six saw a comeback for Virtus.pro, and they did not let mousesports win a single round until round eleven.
The credit for that five round rampage goes to MICHU’s doubles and triples and Snax’s amazing sniping skills. Snax once took down four members of mousesports with his sniper rifle. Finally, in round eleven, ropz stepped up and took a triple kill, breaking Virtus.pro’s winning streak.
Mousesports went on to win two rounds, but Virtus.pro won two of the three rounds remaining in the first half. The first half ended with mousesports winning eight rounds, and Virtus.pro seven.
Mousesports did really well as counter terrorists
They once again won the pistol round. They also managed to win the anti-eco round, and defended the bomb sites successfully until the timer ran out. The credit for this really goes to oskar’s making a triple kill. Using their financial advantages, mousesports utterly dominated Virtus.pro in the next three rounds as well.
After taking a beating, Virtus.pro hit back hard in the sixth round of the second half, but comparatively ineffectually. Mousesports quickly responded in the next round, and Virtus.pro were broken economically. Now, mousesports needed just two rounds to win the match, and Virtus.pro bought everything they could to bear to stop mousesports. But, in the last round, and despite a brave effort, Virtus.pro proved unable to stand against a fully equipped mousesports, and lost the first match in the Finals.
Virtus.pro avenged their loss in Cobblestone
Cobblestone is a map that mousesports always find difficult to handle. However, their performance there was beyond dismal, as they scored just two rounds against Virtus.pro in the map. This is just about the lowest point mousesports have hit in the entire year. Virtus.pro started out very strong, with a series of wins that lasted till round seven. MICHU’s, byali’s and pashaBiceps’ triple and quadruple kills won them round after round. Mousesports had taken two rounds at the end of the first half, and no more.
The second half started out with Virtus.pro winning the pistol round
They then went on to end the second half in just under six minutes, while not giving a single round to mousesports. We’re quite sure that at this point Virtus.pro considered the trophy itself within their grasp.
History repeats itself as Virtus.pro clash in the Finals of an event once again, at the V4 Future Sports Festival.
A ‘Final’ showdown in Train
After being crushed in Cobblestone, mousesports entered Train determined to win. Virtus.pro looked rather confident as they went into the start of the decide match.
Mousesports started out as terrorists and swiftly eliminated the entire Virtus.pro team to win the round. They also managed to win the anti-eco round and continued to win until the third round. Virtus.pro stopped mousesports’ progress in round four and took that round. However, mousesports were flush with cash, and not to be stopped quite so easily. They struck back in the fifth and sixth rounds and kept their lead.
MICHU and Snax then displayed incredible pistol skills, and took down a fully equipped mousesports in round seven. This was really the turning point for Virtus.pro and they eliminated mousesports and defused the bomb in the next three rounds.
Mousesports now went eco and came out with a full equip in round eleven
Ropz made a brilliant entry, taking out three of the enemy singlehandedly. Oskar went on the offensive in the next round, and took down three opponents with his sniper rifle. In round fourteen, pashaBiceps sneaked past mousesports, and ambushed them, taking a triple kill. Mousesports’ strong start in the first half still gave them a one round lead against Virtus.pro.
However, that slim advantage hardly mattered in the second half, as MICHU took a triple kill in the second pistol round. His team were off to a good start, and soon Virtus.pro were leading by two rounds. Mousesports took one more round in between, but NEO shut them down in the next round with a triple kill. Mousesports then managed to win another round. Yet again, Virtus.pro not only shut them down, but also won the next two rounds by detonating the C4.
A fight to the finish
At this point, Virtus.pro just needed two more rounds to win the event, and mousesports still needed to win all the remaining six rounds to do the same, or five rounds to enter overtime. Mousesports, after a tactical pause, decided to go on the defensive. This worked for them, as they defended both bomb sites so that Virtus.pro were unable to plant the bomb in time. Mousesports continued to play on the defensive and eliminated the Virtus.pro team, and defused the bombed twice.
In the remaining three rounds, mousesports kept using the same tactic successfully. They repeatedly prevented Virtus.pro from planting the C4 in time, and defused the bomb in the last two rounds, winning the match, the Finals, and the event. With this win, mousesports become the first team to win two majors in series in 2018. Oskar was the MVP of the event.