North American powerhouse Sentinels were crowned the champions of the VALORANT Champions Tour (VCT) Masters Reykjavík without dropping a single game, capping off their perfect run with a 3-0 sweep over European team Fnatic on Monday (31 May).
Sentinels and Fnatic were the two favourites to take the title in Iceland, with Sentinels having a strong claim to the most talented roster in the tournament, comprised of former Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) pros Shahzeb “ShahZaM” Khan, Hunter “SicK” Mims, and Michael “dapr” Gulino, as well as prodigies Jared “zombs” Gitlin and Tyson “TenZ” Ngo.
Fnatic had a stacked roster of its own, featuring former CS:GO pros in Jake “Boaster” Howlett and Nikita “Derke” Sirmitev, former Fortnite pros Domagoj “Doma” Fancev and James “Mistic” Orfila, as well as newcomer Martin “Magnum” Peňkov.
Both squads first faced off in a marquee matchup in the first round of the upper bracket, with Sentinels prevailing over Fnatic in a close 2-0 sweep and knocking them down to the lower bracket. The North Americans then cruised through Team Vikings from Brazil and NUTURN Gaming from South Korea to claim their spot in the grand finals.
Meanwhile, Fnatic had to survive a gruelling gauntlet in the lower bracket to force a rematch with the team that sent them there.
The European squad defeated X10 Esports from Southeast Asia, Version1 from North America, fellow Europeans Team Liquid, and finally NUTURN Gaming, in order to earn the right to challenge Sentinels again for the championship.
Game one of the finals in Split started with Sentinels looking to be in control after they finished the first half up 7-5.
However, Fnatic stormed back after the side switch and went on a 7-5 run to force the game to overtime. Sentinels’ edge in talent showed out in the extra rounds, as they were able to outplay Fnatic twice in a row to take a close victory in game one.
Fnatic then struck back hard in game two at Bind and dominated the first half to go up 8-4. In a reversal of what happened in game one, Sentinels went on an 8-4 run in the second half to force yet another overtime.
While Fnatic put up a much better fight this time around, Sentinels prevailed in four of the six extra rounds to take a commanding 2-0 lead in the series.
Smelling blood in the water, Sentinels blitzed their opponents in the first half of game three at Haven to take a 9-3 lead.
A resilient Fnatic managed to steal away eight rounds and were looking like they could force the series’ third-straight overtime, but Sentinels were able to methodically win the four rounds they needed to close out the series and claim the championship.
TenZ, who continues to make his case for being the best VALORANT player in the world, earned Finals MVP honours for his stellar showing against Fnatic in the championship round. He notched a series-high 79 kills and 25 assists against 61 deaths, good for a 1.3 kill death ratio, to lead Sentinels to the VCT Masters Reykjavík title.
TenZ notably had the highest rating out of all players in the finals with an insane 1.40, according to VALORANT stats tracker thespike.gg. He was also the highest-rated player of the entire tournament with a 1.44 rating.
With their victory, Sentinels claimed the lion’s share of US$200,000 and 400 VCT points while Fnatic earn US$100,000 and 350 points for finishing in second place.
The VCT points the teams have earned will go towards securing a spot in the VALORANT Champions tournament in December, where the first-ever VALORANT world champions will be crowned.
Shahzeb “ShahZaM” Khan
Hunter “SicK” Mims
Michael “dapr” Gulino
Jared “zombs” Gitlin
Tyson “TenZ” Ngo.
Jake “Boaster” Howlett
Nikita “Derke” Sirmitev
Domagoj “Doma” Fancev
James “Mistic” Orfila
Martin “Magnum” Peňkov.
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