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December 01, 2016

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LCL Open Cup is the main off-season tournament on the eSports LoL scene in the CIS. The scheme of its holding is simple: first, an open qualification, which reveals the two best clubs of the domestic League of Legends server, followed by a group stage with the participation of teams from the Continental League, and, finally, the playoffs, where invited Atlanteans join the competition – in our case, Albus NoX Luna and Vega Squadron, finalists of the LCL summer half-season. In today’s article, we will briefly go over the “open cup”, the main matches of which took place over the weekend in St. Petersburg.

Group A included TORNADO ROX, Team Just.MSI Alpha and Grandma’s Cucumbers (amateur team). The exchange of handshakes and bruises took place on November 20 at Gamer Stadium in Moscow. “Granny’s Pickles” performed surprisingly well, TORNADO ROX – below their capabilities, and the first place and a ticket to the semi-finals went to Team Just.MSI Alpha – the winners of the Candidates League and the Promotion Tournament.

Team Just.MSI Alpha made it to the top 4 at their very first major professional tournament.

But the quartet B, which pitted Virtus.pro (we devoted a separate article to the return of the eminent organization to LoL), Vaevictis eSports and the Cool Beavers, disappointed to some extent. The Beavers quickly lost in two meetings. The Bears, on the contrary, won two lightning-fast victories. Then everything is clear – it was Virtus.pro that joined the quartet of semi-finalists.

By the way, let’s say a few words about Vaevictis eSports, since the opportunity has presented itself. As you know, the main roster of this organization took fifth place in the summer LCL split, and the “junior”, Vaevictis Syndicate, made its way to the League through the Promotion Tournament. And the management decided to give a chance to newcomers – that is, Syndicate, but under the old name.

In the off-season, Vaevictis eSports didn’t have a good game.

Group B matches were no longer held at the Gamer Stadium, but at the Street Art Museum in St. Petersburg on November 25th. The start of the playoffs was given the next day: Team Just.MSI Alpha got Albus NoX Luna as opponents, and Virtus.pro got Vega Squadron.

For ANX, the meeting has developed, such an impression, quite simply – almost in one gate (whose exactly, and so it is clear). The same 2-0 was expected by hundreds of spectators gathered at the LAN stage in the second semi-final: the Sharks fought confidently on the first map and even more confidently on the second one. Evgeny Belousov aka Drobovik123 especially shone on the field. It should be noted that no one expected a quick start from Virtus.pro in the form of a victory in the “open cup”, nevertheless, the team performed very well. There is more one strong club in the LCL!

So we got to the grand final (November 27). For Vega, the meeting was a long-awaited revenge or, rather, revenge for the final of the LCL summer split, where the Tigers, losing 0:2, took three maps in a row and another championship. However, ANX had not lost in LAN battles at home for a very long time, and getting into the top 8 at the World Championship tempered and united the team even more, so the outcome seemed to be a foregone conclusion…

But first, take a look at the opening ceremony that sparkled before the grand final. The show combined orchestral music, rock chords and cosplay performances along with a theater group.

And one more retreat – on November 27, Riot Games pitted MAI and MTU students head-on in the final round of the Battle of the Universities. The cup went to the MAI (by the way, they have a session on their nose!).

The revenge, alas, did not take place. Although the final of the LCL Open Cup followed in the footsteps of that August match – with the only difference being that this time they fought to two victories. Vega, which was strengthened in the off-season by Aleksey Kitsak aka LeX, completed the opening bout to fanfare, and then only had time to heal the wounds. ANX fidgeted on the throne, but still did not give it up – it is still the best LoL team in the CIS.

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