Cover image source: @Mars Media
Minor winner, Ninjas in Pyjamas became the 3rd team from EU to make it to the winner bracket semifinals, joining OG and Secret. There was a possibility of all 4 teams being from the region but unfortunately, Liquid were taken down by EG.
Matumbaman’s last pick Broodmother handed Liquid an early lead in the series against EG, but the NA team struck back hard. Riding on the back of Cr1t’s game-winning space creation, both Arteezy’s Drow and Sumail’s Alchemist power farmed their way to tie up the series. In game 3, Liquid’s greed was well punished by EG, who not only won all their lanes, but steamrolled the TI7 champions with a heavy mid-game focused lineup.
PPD has been rather infamous for taking down Chinese teams, and he proved it once again as they took down the winners of the previous Major, Vici Gaming. VG got heavily outdrafted in game 1, and Paparazzi’s Luna showed just why the hero has fallen out of favour. However, he redeemed himself on the PA in game 2 as a 12-minute Desolator, made possible by Yang’s 4 position Magnus, allowed VG to brush aside NiP in a very one-sided affair.
Ace’s 16-minute ultra kill on PL in game 3, allowed NiP to snowball very hard and they didn’t give VG an inch of space to come back as they closed out the series clinically.
EG now take on former captain PPD’s NiP for a spot in the upper bracket finals while Secret face defending TI champs, OG. Liquid take on the winner of Pain/Chaos in the lower bracket while VG face the winner of Fnatic/Keen.