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We’ve reached the final stage of Season 4 produced by Digital Crusade and we need to see who qualified and who went home and who counted their chickens before they hatched. The regular season wasn’t long, but it was dense and full of good matches. Let’s see how the last few matches went!

Urban Esports vs. Racquestai. The best teams, who were already qualified, wanted to show the praise they received was warranted and that they are where they are on merit. Urban went for the same strategy, focused around 2Axes who piloted Kai’sa. Forward took Alistar support and Vrow, as expected, Lulu mid. On top, CPM ensured good engage potential with his Ornn, and Xin Zhao was supposed to be a champion to stand between the carries and the opposing team. For Urban this was the formula for success. And in a tournament where bans against certain players are very valuable, Racquestai didn’t do that. They took the gamble and responded with Miss Fortune, with Camile and we already know what her mission was. Orianna in the middle, a mage who could control the lane very well, and useful in fights. The Ukrainians started the match better, with the first kill, the first dragons, but kills were pretty much split for most of the match. Each team was reacting to the other’s moves, but Racquestai was moving better. They were taking towers faster, getting to the dragons first, but the gold was relatively even, with the caveat that 2Aaxes had two thousand gold more than Imperial.. Urban was pumping more money into their carry than the Romanian government was pumping into one of Dragnea’s companies, and it showed in the 22nd minute, when a fight in the middle lane resulted in an ace for Urban, followed by a baron and a dragon. They overcame the deficit of a thousand gold and turned it into a lead of more than three thousand. The Romanians tried to push the lanes as fast as possible and even tried to close the match, but they failed, and the match dragged on. Urban had priority on the map and somehow managed to hammer their fingers, getting caught in the opponent’s jungle. Racquestai’s combo worked wonders, with Kai’sa pinned under Miss Fortune’s ultimate, and they didn’t hesitate for a second. The match ended abruptly, on an Urban mistake. A match for which the lack of stakes didn’t matter, and I can’t wait to see a best of five between the two teams.

Infinite Gaming vs. Cyber MD. Second match of the day with no stakes. Both teams knew they wouldn’t bother travelling to Cluj, so they thought a troll game was welcome. Blitz on top vs. Kayn, team fights from the first minute, over two kills per minute, a ten thousand gold advantage thrown in, and the first win for the MD team. Congratulations Cyber MD! Maybe there’s a reason both teams are staying home and at least they can work on their attitude. If they had fun, I’m happy for them. I know I didn’t. 

OneTap Gaming vs. Nexus KTRL. The loser was disqualified. The teams had a 3-3 record, but if you look at the leaderboard from 3 stages ago, the teams were at opposite poles. Nexus KTRL was 3-1 in  and OneTap was 1-3. The momentum was on the side of the latter, but the casters and the crowd were on the side of Nexus KTRL. Unfortunately, we would not see either of Morfarius’ Shaco or Ivern now, as they were banned. Nexus had a new top laner, namely Zora. It remained to be seen what this would mean for them, but it was clearly a blow, Septico being an important piece of their arsenal. In the 13th minute the teams were even on gold, and no tower was threatened. The game was a cautious affair, and even though I had seen five assassinations at the 15 minute mark, the action was more about the moves they were making on the map. A gank on top meant a dragon, plays were made around the Herald, a good macro game. The teams were as focused and pragmatic as they could be, their weeks of work were on the table. The OneTap guys took a clearer lead after taking the baron and seemed to be on the right track, but they forced a fight on the opposing base, and Trundle died. Nexus KTRL took the next baron. OneTap lost three towers and the game was tied again. The breakthrough came in the fight for Elder, where OneTap lost the fight, the buff, and the match. I’d say the inexperience of OneTap mattered more than Nexus KTRL’s experience because the mistakes they made were not forced but made in haste, born out of impatience. It was a nice, settled game, cerebrally played except for a few moments, and the best team went further. However, OneTap deserves congratulations and applause. The team showed steady development in all aspects, even if it wasn’t enough to go further. Still, they captured our attention, see you again OneTap!

Lenovo Legion Honved vs. Random 5. The match that gave Keta and Varga a headache. Lenovo would have qualified if they won, and if they lost, they would have headed to a tiebreaker against Nexus KTRL. Random 5 were in a better situation, win and qualify, lose and stay home. R5, despite giving up the first kill, took control early in the match and also took  a lead in gold. Later on, their problem was holding onto that lead and finishing the match. The problem with their comp was that all their damage was AD, and LLH could easily itemize against it, so they were somewhat against the clock. After the 20th minute, they were starting to throw the match. They forced a baron, got the buff but lost three members. Lenovo showed that they were no strangers to mistakes either, and just as they had evened the odds, they put themselves behind by more than five thousand gold after a forced fight that wouldn’t have given them a decisive advantage. From here the Bulgarians remembered that they are a good team and that they know how to close out a game. Somehow, they still have trouble managing an advantage and executing the fights properly, because it seems their synergy isn’t that good. On the other hand, LLH made a lot of mistakes, something atypical of them, mistakes that threw them into the playoff match against Nexus KTRL.

Tiebreaker. Nexus KTRL vs. Lenovo Legion Honved. Legion was playing after a fresh loss and Nexus KTRL after what I assume was a tense wait. NXK had won earlier, but I don’t think confidence was reaching huge heights among them because the way they did it was unconvincing. The drafts were pretty much business as usual, nothing wow, maybe just a jungle Karthus for LLH. The Romanians tied their own shoelaces with a Kyle last pick. A difficult mission on top, which pays off only after the 30th minute, when Kayle has enough gold, experience and items. In the first minutes, NXK managed to not give up more than a few cs, moreover, they also took the first dragon. They had to stall as long as possible for Kayle to get into the match, Orianna to be relevant, Ezreal to get to 3 items. LLH also had a late-game safety net, namely Karthus and Amumu, who has very good synergy with Miss Fortune. But the situation got worse without even noticing, because even though the kills were even, NXK couldn’t apply pressure or protect the towers. A three thousand gold deficit in the 20th minute meant they were still on track, considering their hyper carry was 2-0-0 and had two completed items. The situation got worse on the 4th dragon though, where mrcvl died and they didn’t even get the objective. That turned into a baron and another lost fight. They simply picked fights they shouldn’t have, but the match wasn’t lost yet. The gold gap increased to five thousand, but that could be kept under control, and we were past the 30-minute mark. Zora, the new addition, had the whole match on his shoulders. Do or die. Mrcvl gave his life to steal a baron, but they lost the dragon soul. Not great, probably irrelevant at this point in the game, but the hope chico, the hope you will recover, the hope you will get back in the game. The last few minutes were pure chaos, with twists and turns and constant tension. When all hope seemed to be lost, the Romanians won, Nexus KTRL won. What a match! And it seems to have been a good one for them, with a new player on an extremely difficult champion. Congratulations, guys! You did almost the impossible and deserve to get to Cluj after all you did.I feel like I’ve gone on a bit too long, but that’s because the matches were so great, and I just want to convince you to see them, and you can do that here. Nice matches, nice atmosphere, funny scenes, serious situations, and we got four teams for the LAN in Cluj-Napoca. Racquestai, Urban, Random 5, and Nexus KTRL will face each other again. Cyber MD, Infinite, OneTap, and Lenovo have left us in debt. See you soon!

Written by LolRN