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Champions day 3 top plays and recap: A turn of events?

Champions day 3 top plays and recap: A turn of events?

Lynne "drDelta" Dumeny


Day 3 of the inaugural VALORANT Champions event has concluded. This day comprised of the starting matches for Group A and the first decider for Knockout Stage from Group D.

Here is a recap of the day full of surprises, Jetts, and a controversial competitive ruling.

Acend vs. Vivo Keyd

Acend were the clear favorites for this matchup; however, as we said before, the BR and SEA regions are ripe with upset potential. Also highly anticipated was the Jett vs. Jett battles of group A and this series delivered plenty of  Olavo “heat” Marcelo vs. Mehmet Yağız “cNed” İpek.


Acend decided to experiment with a role swap, but this experiment seemed to go wrong from the very beginning. While teams knew they had to keep an eye out for heat, they actually were dealing with Murillo “murizzz” Tuchtenhagen the entire map. From the first pistol, murizzz delivered a 4k on a Ghost and Vivo Keyd took the first four rounds.  

murizzz continued to deliver throughout the map with flashy plays and multi-kills, making the audience realize that Acend was going to have a bit more difficulty in this series than anticipated. Acend started getting a bit confident in the last part of the first half. Bring it to a 6:6, Acend seemed to stabilize the bleed caused by murizzz. But then, both heat and Leonardo “mwzera” Serrati turned up the heat up to close out the map. With the top 3 fraggers in the lobby being heat, mwzera, and murizzz.


Acend had quite a bit of work to do to try to shake off that loss on Icebox. However, with a 9:3 lead in the first half, they just demonstrated that Bind is their homeground. Well-rehearsed, they were in top form, able to easily bring the series to a 1-1.


While Breeze is no longer the newest map, teams are still experimenting with their compositions. Acend decided to roll out a brand new comp, even including a KAY/O. 

This map was clearly battle of the Jetts with heat and cNed showing why they are the best in the world.

However, Acend was not able to gain much from this new composition, losing the map 8:13.

In a turn of events, Riot released a competitive ruling against Vivo Keyd regarding their use of an exploit. Jonathan “JhoW” Glória used a Cypher camera exploit which “provides an unintended one-way view of the entrance to A site of Breeze”. After review, Riot adjusted the score to 13:9 in favor of Acend. As of now, Acend will be moving on to play Team Envy on Day 4. 

However, with the trending of #justiceforkeyd and the continued discussion of the controversial ruling, Riot has decided to dedicate more time to the ruling and has delayed the start of Day 4 matches as a consequence.

Fnatic vs. Vision Strikers 

Fnatic started shedding some of the doubts that were cast over them with their win against Cloud9 Blue on Day 1 of VALORANT Champions. Being in the “group of death”, Fnatic had definitely had to bring their A game to make it out of the group stage against Vision Strikers. 


Icebox is a popular map these days, yet still full of surprises. Domagoj “Doma” Fancev and Nikita “Derke” Sirmitev were names repeated over and over by the casters as they continued to be playmakers for the team.  

The first 5 rounds went to Fnatic, making us wonder, just how dominant they would be this series. While Vision Strikers were able to bring it into an even score at the half, they were unable to keep that momentum shift in the 2nd half, ultimately losing 10:13


In one of the most even maps we have seen this tournament, the score felt tied almost the entire map. It was plays like the ones from Goo “Rb” Sang-Min, that helped Vision Strikers close out this map in the end. 


In the end, we went to Fracture. While some teams are insta-banning the map, teams like Fnatic and Vision Strikers welcome the challenge. This is the second time we have seen this map, both times coming from Fnatic. They are showing that they are clearly the victors of Champions on this map, winning against both Cloud9 Blue and Vision Strikers in dominating fashion. Fnatic put on a clinic for how this map should be played. Even though Yu “BuZz” Byung-chul had a flashy round, Derke and Doma again were able to fight back no problem. Fnatic took the map and the series, becoming the first team to make it into the Knockout Stage of Champions in Berlin.

Team Envy vs. X10 Crit

While Envy was the clear favorite of this matchup, people still highly anticipated the performance of Patiphan “Patiphan” Chaiwong and a potential X10 Crit upset. With the positive COVID-19 test from Victor “Victor” Wong, this was one of the series that had to play from the isolation rooms and with the alternative LAN set up. This change did not seem to bother to Envy much as they were able to easily take out X10. 


X10 Crit was able to not only able to win the pistol round, but also the first 3 rounds of the first map. With this momentum in X10 Crit’s direction, the audience was also left wondering if we would witness another upset today. However, Jaccob “yay” Whiteaker was able to make this a clean win for Team Envy. 


Not only was yay having his typical dominant performance, Jimmy “Marved” Nguyen was also able to deliver beautiful rounds such as these. This series brings Team Envy one step closer into the Knockout Stage and their fate will be decided on Day 4 of the tournament. 

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