Danish Team Astralis once again showed their dominance in the Counter Strike pro scene with a hard fought 2-0 win over Brazilian side MIBR to retain their ECS title.
Astralis showed how deep their map pool is and decided to pick Inferno for their first choice even though they lost on this map to MIBR in the group stages. The Danish team started off Inferno well, by winning the pistol round on the Terrorist Side (T Side) then went on to take control with a 6-2 lead after the 8th round.
MIBR’s in game leader Gabriel “Fallen” Toledo was the spearhead in their comeback with an ace in the 11th round. This was not enough as Astralis went into the half in charge on the back of a magnificent quad kill from one of their star players Peter “Dupreeh” Rasmussen.
Astralis kept their dominant run going after the half, once again winning the pistol round on the Counter-Terrorist Side (CT Side) and then proceeding to win five rounds in a row to bring the score to 13-7. The Brazilian side then went on the offensive and won the following seven rounds in a row.
In what was a remarkable finish to the map, Nicolai “device” Reedtz got two key kills on the B bombsite to bring the Danish side to map point. The game looked like it was going to go into overtime thanks to a 1v2 clutch from MIBR’S Marcelo “coldzera” David to force a 30th round between the two sides.
Astralis shocked all fans when they won the 30th round with nothing more than pistols compared to a fully decked-out opposition thanks to a quad kill from Emil “Magisk” Reif.
In an odd choice to many, MIBR picked Overpass for the second map despite having not yet played Overpass at this tournament and having won just one of their last four games on this map with the new lineup. Spectators were talking about how strange a pick this map was, with MIBR seemingly wanting to prove everyone wrong this time around.
Overpass started off similarly to the previous map with Astralis winning the pistol round and the following two rounds to get off to a 3-0 lead. Led by Fallen, MIBR then dug in deep and rode the momentum to lead the map 7-3. Astralis would not go down without a fight though and brought the deficit down to just one round going into the end of the half.
Switching sides at half time, Astralis were now on the CT side and once again won the pistol round, having won all four pistol rounds by this point in the series, two on Inferno and now two on Overpass. The Danes then went on to win the following anti-eco round to take the lead for the first time since the map started. MIBR managed to get their economy sorted and went on a blistering run to make the score 15-11, needing just one round to force out a third map and tie the series 1-1.
Enter Device as he clutched a 1v2 with just a scout and USP to keep his team in the game. That winning round was the momentum his side needed as they managed to bring the score to 15-15 and force overtime.
The first overtime could not separate the two sides with both teams winning rounds on the offensive T side, forcing a second overtime between the two world class teams.
Astralis then managed to take a lead with a great T side display leaving MIBR with everything to do to force a third map. MIBR player Tarik “tarik” Celik gave the Brazilians a lifeline with a phenomenal 1v4 clutch, this did not stop Astralis though with in-game leader Lukas “gla1ve” Rossander responding with a quad kill of his own to bring the Danes to championship point, leaving MIBR with no money to contest the match anymore. The Danes won the game 22-20 in second overtime to defend their ECS title and prove that they are still number one ranked team within all of Counter-Strike.
One of the standout players in the final vs MIBR was Andreas “Xyp9x” Højsleth who ended the two games with 49 total kills and 45 Deaths over both maps. In an interview with HLTV Andreas was quoted saying “What keeps us going is that we’re not satisfied with dropping off, we know how tough it is to be world number one.”
Andreas, when also asked about that Overpass pick from MIBR, commented: “We didn’t expect them to pick Overpass, we thought this would be the third map, but we prepared for it”.
With this win for Astralis they have gone on to add to their phenomenal record of winning 78% of all games played within the last 12 months. No other team has managed to knock them off the top spot within the last 12 months.
If they can keep this run going, then no doubt they will go down in the history books just like the Famous Fnatic team of 2013-2014 who went on to win back to back majors along with 11 other international titles in that time.
ESL Pro League Season 8 Finals and the Blast Pro Series in Lisbon, Portugal are both coming up in December, Astralis will be involved in these tournaments and no doubt will be favorites for both events.
Counter Strike: Global Offensive available on Steam.