Vitality have guaranteed a spot in the BLAST Premier Fall Finals following a 2-0 victory over BIG, who will face off against the winner of FaZe and Complexity in Group B’s consolidation final on Saturday.
The French team utilised all six players for the second consecutive match, with Nabil “Nivera” Benrlitom featuring again on Dust2 after a positive showing against Complexity in the team’s opening match in the tournament, while Kévin “misutaaa” Rabier subbed in on Overpass and took the map by storm with a 1.43-rated performance.
BIG started off on the right foot on their map pick of Dust2, pulling ahead 4-0 early on with a series of A site hits, but their momentum soon came to a halt. Vitality wasted no time in tying the score as Mathieu “ZywOo” Herbaut and Richard “shox” Papillon stepped up with numerous multi-kills to earn their side the lead and a strong economic advantage over their opponents. A stealthy push through long in the final round of the half resulted in a quad kill for Cédric “RpK” Guipouy, who wrapped up the French team’s CT side 9-6.
A clean pistol round saw Johannes “tabseN” Wodarz’s squad secure the second-half opener, and they followed it up with a Nils “k1to” Gruhne 1v2 clutch to stay hot on Vitality’s heels. However, after levelling the score at 9-9, the German side fell flat and failed to subdue the Frenchmen’s offence as ZywOo spearheaded Vitality to a 16-10 victory.
Nivera was substituted for misutaaa on Overpass, where the French player made an impactful entrance to the matchup with a 1v2 in a post-plant situation. The young gun continued to shine in the subsequent rounds as Vitality claimed a 4-1 lead, but it didn’t take long for BIG to find their footing. Individual plays from tabseN locked down a couple of rounds for his team on the way to a 7-5 advantage and the German squad narrowly held on for a one-round lead at the midway point despite a late response from Dan “apEX” Madesclaire and company.
Vitality promptly added three rounds to their tally on the defence to extend their lead, but Ismailcan “XANTARES” Dörtkardeş took charge once rifles were afforded to help BIG to secure two of their own. The Frenchmen turned it up a gear with the finish line in sight, with a RpK triple kill and a shox smoke defuse soon putting their team on series point. BIG could only deny a single round before Vitality claimed the win to secure their place in the group final as well as in the season finals.