Roughly two months after Evil Geniuses denied Astralis an ESL One trophy, it’s their turn to get booted. The Danish CS superpower will play in yet another big tourney final after dispatching the Evil Geniuses 2 to 1. This win will definitely pad their #1 status, pulling further away from their closest contender, Evil Geniuses themselves. Are we in for another Astralis era? Did it ever end at all?
The North American squad managed to put up quite a fight, to be fair. EG’s top fragger Vincent “Brehze” Cayonte clung onto his team’s only positive KD rating with a 52 – 51 (+1). Meanwhile, the rest of Astralis did what they did best, blowing up their enemies. For Astralis, sniper Nicolai “dev1ce” Reedtz led his team with 60 – 40 (+20) KD.
Astralis being Astralis
On the first map (Inferno), Astralis showed utter domination of their opponents. Despite it being EG’s pick, they shook off the pistol round loss and pummeled the NA squad to the ground. An early force buy snowballed the round score 9-1 in favor of Astralis. Thankfully for EG, Cvetelin “CeRq” Dimitrov won a crucial round that would allow them to win the remaining rounds of the half.
However, Astralis continued to catch EG off guard even after the swap. They brought the game to the Americans with such ferocity, constantly catching them off guard. With dev1ce on the AWP, Evil Geniuses didn’t stand a chance.
The Geniuses strike back
Fortunately for EG, Astralis struggled on the second map (Nuke). Formerly a niche pick for the Danes, their issues on the map in recent tournaments are still prevalent and the NA team quickly pounced on their missteps. The Danes rushed off to a fast start but EG quickly recovered, ending the first half down just three rounds.
After the swap, Astralis continued to play the same way while Evil Geniuses slowly adapted to their game plan. After a wild 2v4, Tarik “tarik” Celik and Ethan “Ethan” Arnold successfully saved their team’s morale and economy. They then used the momentum to steal away the map from Astralis to the delight of the home crowd.
Astralis and inevitability
Despite EG’s noteworthy adaptation to Astralis’ play, the difference in skill between the #1 and #2 teams are still too vast. The Americans tried to copy their opponents’ force-buy strat after losing the pistol round, successfully catching them off-guard. However, they were unable to capitalize on it. Astralis stood their ground amidst the barrage. Before long, they slowly sunk their fangs onto EG, ending the half at 10-5.
EG evidently lost gas by this time, as they were unable to make a dent on their opponents. They would go on to win just one more round before watching Astralis advance to the grand final at their expense. GG.