Written By AashirAhmed - 2021-11-25
In this series of previews, yesterday we published a preview of VALORANT Champions Group A. Today we will be looking at Group B which features one of the favourites to win the event, Sentinels.
The Champions event, scheduled to start on December 1st, will be the apex of VCT featuring the top 16 teams from across the world, where one team will be proclaimed the first VALORANT world Champion. The group stages will follow the standard GSL format with best of 3 matches, and two teams from each group making the playoffs. Participants in Group B include:
The group will engage in combat according to the following schedule:
On one side of the opening match is Team Liquid, who managed to qualify for the champions by defeating Guild esports with a 3-1 in the grand finals. It is worth appreciating Guild’s effort as they made a strong lower-bracket run after being beaten 2-0 by Liquid earlier in the tournament. After redeeming themselves at the LCQ, they put their skills and chemistry to the test at the Red Bull Home Ground #2 - Main Event in London and came out on top after an intense Grand Finals match against Acend, a notable name in the EMEA Valorant scene. Despite their exclusion from Masters Berlin, the introduction of Nabil "Nivera" Benrlitom has provided a renewed sense of hope for the team given that they’ve had a 19-3 map record across two tournaments.
While their competitors are KRÜ esports, a team that has dominated the Latin American region for the whole year, being one of only three teams to qualify for all three international competitions in 2021, where they have tried to prove their ability by defeating Sharks in Reykjavik and making it out of Groups at Masters Berlin and in the regional scene, they remain undisputed in since May. So, the upcoming Champions provides them with one final opportunity to represent their region, and you can bet they will be looking to capitalize on the opportunity.
A quick look at the history between these teams reveals a matchup at Masters Reykjavik in Lower Round 2 where Team Liquid managed to defeat KRÜ Esports with a 2-0 score. A trend to favor Ascent picks can be noticed in Team Liquid’s recent endeavors, while KRÜ leans towards Haven so the resulting map pool will be quite interesting for this matchup.
When you notice Sentinels is in group B, it is natural to have a feeling of sympathy towards the other teams since the team have won every major tournament in VALORANT Champions Tour, except VCT Masters in Berlin and Challengers 2 qualifiers. Being the superpower they are, it is no surprise that they are not only the group favorites but also a team that many expect to see in the Grand Finals.
The appointment of Shane "Rawkus" Flaherty as a coach demonstrates the extent of their preparation for the tournament since before this acquisition, Sentinels had been competing in VALORANT without an official head coach. The tweet announcing Shane’s induction into the Sentinel’s roster literally quoted, “Adding brainpower to our firepower.” That alone is enough to serve as a warning to competing teams.
Facing the mighty Sentinels is FURIA esports. A Brazilian team who had suffered the misfortune of missing out on the past two international events (Masters Reykjavik and Berlin) due to placing third at both stages of the Brazilian qualifications. However, with a fascinating performance in the South American Last Chance Qualifier, they have finally received a chance to meet the world's finest on LAN.
Although their qualification meant potential redemption for the Brazilian region, it seems that the region might have to suffer at the hands of fate with Sentinels as their first matchup. A player to watch for within the roster is Agustin "nzr" Ibarra, who has proven to be an elite Sova player and an effective IGL throughout the team’s 2021 campaign. He currently boasts a 1.14 rating and 240 ACS, statistics worth of praise in the pro scene.
Who do you think will make it out of this group? Let us know in the comments! To make sure you are ready to catch all the action, we at THESPIKE.GG will be bringing you crisp previews of every group, from A to D, over the next few days.
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