CPH Games: Road to Victory
Posted 2012-04-08 Acker
CPH Games: Road to Victory
No one could have predicted the outcome. Copenhagen Games has been one of the most interesting tournaments to follow. With such a strong field of teams, the event offered action from the very beginning. FnaticRaidCall was one of the teams in attendance but many people didn't know what to expect from the team, which had been one of the strongest sides in the world for over five years - and no wonder. Line-up changes had been one of the keywords in the first quarter of the year as Faruk "Pita" Pita decided to step down, making space for Andreas "MODDII" Fridh, who, on January 30th, was announced as the new Fnatic. This, however, wasn't the last change which should occur on the line-up. On the 4th of March, one of the most accomplished Counter Strike players of all times, Patrik "cArn" Sättermon, announced that he would step down from the role as captain after Intel Extreme Masters. Shortly after the Intel Extreme Masters, and only a couple of weeks before Copenhagen Games, the former mousesports player, Finn "Karrigan" Andersen, was officially joining FnaticRaidCall on March 25.
The team was now back in business, but with only one and a half weeks until Copenhagen Games would open the doors, it looked difficult for the Swedish-Danish side. But as any other top team, FnaticRaidCall didn't arrive unprepared. At the first day of Copenhagen Games, the newly appointed team captain, Richard "xizt" Landström, told us in an interview that the team had been practicing for two or three weeks.
When the guys arrived at the venue, they all looked very hyped and seemed all very determined about what they would like to achieve at Copenhagen Games 2012. On the Friday, the group stage kicked-off and FnaticRaidCall had been placed in group H together with the Danish side of TRiCKSTeRS and the Swedish side of BOOOM.
In the first match of the tournament, FnaticRaidCall faced off against TRiCKSTeRS on first de_mirage, which finished with a 16-1 scoreline for Fnatic, and then de_tuscan, where the scoreline was a bit more kind to the eye - 16-5, and Fnatic had secured the first points of the tournament. Next up was the Swedish side of BOOOM, a team who had received a midseed. The first map was de_train where especially Michael "Friis" Jørgensen was one-to-watch. The first map finished 16-3. On de_nuke, the second map of the game, the all-Swedish line-up managed to fight back but despite the good effort, FnaticRaidCall closed the map 16-13. With the win over BOOOM, FnaticRaidCall had managed to qualify for the playoff. You can read a complete group stage write-up here.
When group H concluded, it looked like this:
|Group stage was played in BO3|
By topping group H, FnaticRaidCall moved on to the playoff bracket where teams such as ESC Gaming, NaVi, SK-Gaming and Lemondogs were waiting. In a pre-playoff interview with Fnatic.com, Michael "Friis" Jørgensen commented on the playoff bracket. In the first round of the playoff, FnaticRaidCall faced NinjaNice, a Danish team who made it to the playoffs after finishing third in group B. In the group, the team had lost 2-0 to ESC Gaming, 2-1 to the Germans from teamKR but had won over the old school players from Copenhagen Wolves. In the first match of the playoff, FnaticRaidCall just did what they had done in group stage. On the first map, de_nuke, FnaticRaidCall showed the audience why they still are to be respected. Rasmus "Gux" Ståhl made 26 kills on the map and was one of the five reasons behind the 16-5 win. The second map was very much the same. De_tuscan was once again dominated by FnaticRaidCall. In the first half, FnaticRaidCall started out as CT and had at halftime a nice 13-2 scoreline. In the second half, the Swedish-Danish team finished the job with a 3-5. The final score was 16-7 and FnaticRaidCall was off to the second playoff round.
In the second round, the mighty ESC Gaming was awaiting. People did not believe it but it was true. The Polish IEM winners would clash with the FnaticRaidCall in a thrilling best-of-three match. Both teams had realized that it was a matter of live and death as the loser of the match would drop down to lower bracket. The match kicked off on de_train and ESC Gaming's pasha was onfire. The map finished 16-11 and suddenly it all seemed very uphill. On the second map of the match, de_dust2, the luck began to turn and FnaticRaidCall got their game going, finishing the map 16-10. On the last map, de_mirage, FnaticRaidCall managed to finish the first half 11-4 and only five more rounds needed to be picked up. The Polish team took home five rounds but it didn't change much, as Fnatic did the same, which meant that FnaticRaidCall had won the map 16-9 and the match 2-1.
People were suprised, some were shocked and some, especially five guys in the black-and-orange jerseys were very happy. By beating ESC, the team did not only secure further advancement, but they did also prove that the new FnaticRaidCall line-up is strong, very strong.
Most teams would be more than happy with a victory of a strong side like ESC Gaming, and the Fnatic team wasn't an exception. But they wanted more. With the victory over ESC Gaming, the team would now face Team Alternate in the upperbracket semi-final. We got a short comment from Team Alternate player, Navid "Kapio" Javadi in connection with our semi-final preview.
"Fnatic is the clear favorite. We have played them several times the last week and they are in my opinion the best aiming-team in this tournament. We have to play very well and use our teamplay and tactics if we should have a chance of winning the match."
Just like the ESC game, the maps were once again close and both teams fought hard in every single round. The first map to be played was de_dust2, and just like in the match versus ESC Gaming, FnaticRaidCall managed to pull out a victory, this time with a 16-12 scoreline. Moving on to de_nuke, not much changed and FnaticRaidCall could close the map 16-10. FnaticRaidCall moved on to the upperbracket final while Alternate dropped down to lowerbracket.
The field of teams left in the tournament was decreasing but FnatiRaidCall was still going strong. Next up was Team WinFakt, who, despite being without their ingame leader, Tomi "lurppis" Kovanen, had managed to overcome the likes of SK-Gaming and Natus Vincere. It was once again best-of-three and just like in the match versus Alternate, de_nuke finished 16-10 in favor of FnaticRaidCall. It was a close encounter and none of the two teams weren't ready to lay down arms. Despite the interesting and exciting first map, the second map, de_train, didn't come close to the first one, finishing 16-3 for FnaticRaidCall.
With the win over Team WinFakt, FnaticRaidCall was once again in a grand final, a grand final so many of us had been waiting for. After some hours of waiting and resting, the guys became aware of the fact that they had to go up against NaVi. The Ukranians were already knocked down to the lowerbracket when they, in the second playoff round, lost to Team WinFakt 16-14 and 16-9. Despite dropping to the lowerbracket, Natus Vincere fought hard and eventually made it to the grand final. Just before the grand final, Andreas "MODDII" Fridh stated in an interview with Fnatic.com that he wasn't surprised that his own team had made it to the grand final, mainly because of their good play prior to the event and due to the fact that they had been bootcamping two days before the event.
Shortly after the interview with MODDII, it was showtime. The players had set up their gear on the stage, the audience were ready and so were the players. From kick-off, both teams were totally focused - Natus Vincere because they had to win both maps and a lost map would mean that they would pick up silver. FnaticRaidCall were totally focused because they wanted it to happen so badly. The team had come this far with a rather new line-up, a new team captain and most importantly, a desire to get the Fnatic name back on track. Both teams had so much to win but at the same time so much to lose.
The map was de_dust2. It was now or never. FnaticRaidCall would only have to win one map, while NaVi had to win 2 as they came from the lowerbracket. Everyone was ready, and it went live. FnaticRaidCall won the pistol round and the guys were off to good start. They took home the following rounds, making it 4-0 for Fnatic. In following rounds, Fnatic managed to win a round despite going for a USP eco - 5-2 was the scoreline. From here the rounds were traded back and forth. At halftime, the two sides were very much on the same level. 7-8 and the two teams switched sides. After losing the pistol round as T, Fnatic was off to a hard start as the pistol round as T is very important. Nevertheless, the intense game continued. After a couple rounds, the two teams were once again very even and the scoreline was telling just how even the two line-up were: 12-12. Both teams reached the 15 rounds and it was time for the overtime. In the first overtime, FnaticRaidCall started out as T, winning it 2-1. And from here, it was breathtaking. In the fouth overtime, FnaticRaidCall finally managed to win. It was a relief. The guys were the Copenhagen Games 2012 champions. They had fought so hard it paid off. The FnaticRaidCall team had won the tournament in front of a wild audience, and over 13000 Counter Strike-fanatics had watched the match through the livestreams.
"An amazing feeling", that was how Rasmus "Gux" Stålh described it shortly after the grand final. The guys had taken home €9.400 but more importantly, they had put the Fnatic-flag back on top. Back where it belong. They proved what they are capable of.
The next tournament for the guys will be EsportSM in Stockholm on April 28. We will be at the tournament, providing you with the same high-quality coverage as the one we brought from Copenhagen Games 2012.
Did you miss some parts of our coverage? You can find them below:
FnaticTV's Dmitriy "MMd" Lomonosov will create a special tribute to the victory at Copenhagen Games 2012.