DreamHack Summer 2017 – SK Gaming To Grand Final Over CLG
SK Gaming were able to overcome Counter Logic Gaming in a best-of-three series, securing their placement in the grand final of DreamHack Summer 2017.
de_Mirage – 9:16 (3:12, 6:4)
The first semi-final of the day saw a convincing start from CLG. The team kicked off to a pistol round victory on the CT side of Mirage, as Ricky “Rickeh” Mulholland and Kenneth “koosta” Suen managed to dispatch two and three members of the Brazilian roster respectively, securing the round for their team. An anti-eco buy in the following round sought to another round victory for CLG, in addition to developing economic stability on the more expensive, CT side. The early rounds had clearly affected the confidence of CLG, enabling the team to play with fewer limitations and restraints, something SK Gaming clearly weren’t used to. The aforementioned situation led to a strong 7:0 initial lead for the American roster, a development that caught the favourites of the match-up off guard. Round 8 marked SK Gaming’s first round of the series, as the team was able to dispatch the entirety of the defence, with Marcelo “coldzera” David accounting for two members of the opposition. The following round saw Epitacio “TACO” de Melo survive in a post-plant situation, where he managed to save enough time for his team, adding another round at 2:7. On a roll, SK managed to score yet another round after eliminating all members of the opposition, in addition to securing a bomb plant in a 3v1 situation against Ricky “Rickeh” Mulholland. Despite developing momentum, SK Gaming were unable to press it further, as CLG proceeded to deflect all aggression from the Brazilians, ultimately leading to a 12:3 finish for the American side.
The second half of the map kicked off with SK Gaming securing the pistol round, in addition to the following three rounds. This lessened the Brazilians’ deficit to a more manageable level at 6:12. Round 19 saw a strong performance from Ricky “Rickeh” Mulholland, who managed to open up with two kills onto SK, allowing his team an opening onto the A bomb site. The bomb was ticking away, with SK Gaming finding themselves in a 3v5 situation. Against the odds the Brazilians boldly sought to retake, however to no avail, as CLG managed to escape with two members still alive, in addition to the extra funds from the bomb explosion. After a disappointing couple of rounds, SK saw Joao “felps” Vasconcellos step up and contribute to his team’s round score through dispatching three members of CLG in round 20. Faced with a 7:13 score, the Brazilians seemed to commence resurgence, running away with a further two rounds, as all members of the offense were dispatched through mutual effort. The Brazilians were able to amount to nine rounds at 9:13 prior to CLG refocusing and closing out the series. Once again the Australian of the team, Ricky “Rickeh” Mulholland was the highlight of the remaining rounds, accounting for four Brazilian deaths over the course of three rounds. Aforementioned three rounds were all accrued by Counter Logic Gaming, closing out the first map at a strong 16:9 score line.
de_Train – 16:7 (12:3, 4:4)
Map two kicked off to a strong pistol round from SK Gaming’s defence. Epitacio “TACO” de Melo and Joao “felps” Vasconcellos both accounted for two members of CLG, as well as a digit for their team on the scoreboard. The Brazilians proceeded to accrue rounds, as a favourable buy and economy allowed a device advantage. The following round saw yet another W for SK Gaming, as CLG found themselves in an eco buy, unable to oppose the Brazilians, a situation that ultimately led to a 4:0 score in favour of SK. Round 5 marked CLG’s first round of the half. The team was able to prolong the round duration in a post-plant situation to a point where Fernando “fer” Alvarenga simply hadn’t enough time to cut the wires. Despite the setback the Brazilians were back on the grind, slamming a further two rounds to secure a 7:1 lead. In what seemed to be a recurring theme, Ricky “Rickeh” Mulholland stepped up for his team in round 9 to destroy three members of the Brazilian roster, contributing greatly to his team’s second round of the half at 2:7. The impressive performance neither inspired his teammates, nor fazed SK Gaming, as the team went on to grab two consecutive rounds, the prior of which saw a spectacular 4k from Fernando “fer” Alvarenga, a member of SK Gaming that hadn’t had too pronounced of a performance recently. Round 12 saw SK Gaming in a 3v5 situation after successful frags from CLG. Joao “felps” Vasconcellos attempted to diffuse the situation by dispatching two members and subsequently equalising the body count at 3v3, however this was superseded by a Ricky “Rickeh” Mulholland, who account for four kills in the round, as well as CLG’s third round of the map. The remaining three rounds all fell in favour of SK Gaming, where a rather impressive six frags were landed by Joao “felps” Vasconcellos. The Brazilians closed the initial half at a commanding 12:3 score, placing CLG in quite the predicament.
A consecutive pistol round victory for SK Gaming, as Team Captain, Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo slayed two members of the defence, in addition to planting the bomb for his team. In a risky manoeuvre CLG opted for a force-buy, a risk that yielded high reward, as the team managed to flawlessly dispatch the entirety of the Brazilian roster, in addition to securing their rifles for rounds to come. With said rifles the defence managed to sweep the aggressors in flawless fashion once again, leading to a 5:13 score for CLG. A weakened economy for SK Gaming enabled a hungry Ethan “NahtE” Arnold to land four kills for his team in round 19. Seemingly unhindered mentally, the Brazilians got back into the game, securing two rounds, and as a consequence, map point at 15:6. In the latter of the two aforementioned rounds Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo stepped up for his team, dropping three members of the opposition. In conclusion, CLG managed to amount to an additional round, one that was followed by a cull from SK Gaming, whereby Ricky “Rickeh” Mulholland found himself in a 1v3 situation that he wasn’t able to clutch out. The Brazilians secured the second map at 16:7, taking the series to map three.
de_Cobblestone – 16:9 (13:2, 3:7)
SK Gaming secured their first pistol round in a row, securing a crucial early advantage on the defensive side. CLG opted for another risky decision, as the team went for a force buy on four team members. Ricky “Rickeh” Mulholland opened the A site up with a frag, stealing a UMP45, however Fernando “fer” Alvarenga shut down the advance, dispatching two members and allowing his teammate Marcelo “coldzera” David the time to rotate and subsequently clear up the A site aggressors. With an economy in tatters CLG just crashed themselves against the defence, only able to score a single frag onto SK’s team captain. Round four saw a three man A site hold from SK, where the team methodically dispatched a fully bought up CLG, landing a 4:0 lead. Another unsuccessful eco push onto the A bombsite from CLG meant a worsening deficit at 0:5. Finally the North American representatives were able to secure a digit in their favour, as a B site rush produced positive results, leaving a lonely Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo saving his AWP on the other side of the map for rounds to come. Despite securing a round CLG found themselves losing the following two, after a broken economy led to loss, extending the team’s deficit to 1:7. Round 9 saw a peculiar situation, where Steve “reltuC” Cutler and Marcelo “coldzera” David found themselves in a 1v1 situation with less than 10 seconds left to the round. Opting to fake plant, the final members of CLG ended up failing to dispatch the Brazilian, losing his team a crucial round, as well as extending his team’s deficit to 1:9. Round 12 saw CLG finally land their second round of the half, as the team managed to effectively take the A bombsite, in large thanks to an opening frag by Ethan “NahtE” Arnold, who managed to dispatch SK’s AWPer, Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo after a superb flash from his teammate. The remainder of half followed the theme, as SK simply dominated on the defence, finishing with a 13:2 score line.
Contrary to the theme of the prior half, CLG stepped up in the pistol round. Ethan “NahtE” Arnold managed to account for three deaths on the Brazilian side, adding a round to his team’s score at 3:13. A force buy from SK Gaming in the second round of the half proved unsuccessful, as all members were swept away by an anti-eco buy from CLG. Exploiting the Brazilians’ broken economy, the North American representatives commenced their road back into the map at 5:13. Found in a 2v3 situation, Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo and Marcelo “coldzera” David attempted a clutch, however a solid backstab from Steve “reltuC” Cutler meant another round in the team’s favour at 6:13. After conceding five consecutive rounds the Brazilians finally landed a digit, after a successful B bomb site take meant a 14:7 score for the favourites. Unable to full buy, CLG are equipped with a MAG7 and Famas. Utilising the MAG7 to perfection, Pujan “FNS” Mehta managed to dispatch two members, granting his team a man advantage and subsequently and additional round at 8:14. Round 23 saw a fantastic 1v2 situation, where the Brazilian Superstar, Marcelo “coldzera” David managed to juke out the opposition, securing a plant on the A bombsite. Able to kill Ethan “NahtE” Arnold, the Brazilian improved his chances of success, with only Pujan “FNS” Mehta. After placing a smoke on top of the planted bomb, the Canadian managed to ninja defuse, securing a round for his team. SK Gaming deemed the longevity of the match sufficient, closing out the final two rounds in consecutive fashion, in turn securing their placement in the grand final.
Images courtesy of DreamHack/ Adela Sznajder