Gambit Esports from Russia and Team Envy from North America will be vying for the championship of the 2021 VALORANT Champions Tour (VCT) Stage 3 Masters tournament in Berlin, Germany after they swept through G2 Esports and 100 Thieves, respectively, in the semi-finals on Sunday (19 September).
Despite a strong start in the group stage, Gambit only finished as the second seed of Group C behind 100 Thieves and were matched against Group A's top seed, Vision Strikers, in the playoff quarterfinals. The Russian squad managed to outlast their Korean opponents 2-1 to advance to the semi-finals against European powerhouse G2 Esports.
Game one in Breeze was a tightly-contested affair, with Gambit taking a narrow 7-5 lead into halftime. Despite a spirited rally by G2 after the side switch, the Russians were able to edge them out 6-5 to take a 13-10 victory to start the series.
While the first game of the series was a close fight, game two in Icebox was the total opposite. Gambit utterly dominated G2, winning all 12 rounds in the first half then cruising through the first round following the side switch to claim the 2-0 series sweep with the first-ever 13-0 shutout in international VALORANT competition.
Meanwhile, Envy have gone on a dominant run of their own as they marched to the grand finals without losing a single game in the entire tournament thus far.
Still fresh off a resounding 2-0 sweep over defending Masters Reykjavík champions Sentinels in the quarterfinals, Envy were pit against 100 Thieves in a showdown between the remaining North American teams in Berlin for a spot in the grand finals.
Envy started the series strong, as they took a commanding 9-3 lead after the first half of game one in Haven. While 100 Thieves have made multiple incredible comebacks in their previous matches to get to this point, the magic seemed to have been running out as Envy closed out game one with a comfortable 13-5 win.
100 Thieves fared better in game two at Ascent, as Envy only managed to get a 7-5 lead by halftime. However, Envy could not be denied as they went on a 6-3 run after the side switch and claim the 13-8 win to sweep the series and punch their ticket to the grand finals.
With their victories, Gambit and Envy have earned the right to battle for the Masters Berlin championship and the grand prize of US$225,000 on Monday (20 September). Both squads have also guaranteed themselves at least US$125,000 as well as 375 VCT circuit points, which have also secured them direct invites to VALORANT Champions — the 2021 VCT's final and marquee tournament — in December.
Meanwhile, G2 Esports and 100 Thieves bow out of Masters Berlin in 3rd-4th place with US$85,000 in consolation.
Gambit Esports VALORANT roster:
Timofey "Chronicle" Khromov
Nikita "d3ffo" Sudakov
Bogdan "Sheydos" Naumov
Ayaz "nAts" Akhmetshin
Igor "Redgar" Vlasov
Team Envy VALORANT roster:
Pujan "FNS" Mehta
Victor "Victor" Wong
Austin "crashies" Roberts
Jaccob "yay" Whiteaker
Jimmy "Marved" Nguyen
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