The first Upper Bracket round of ESL One Germany 2020 ended with a staggering number of upsets: 3 out of 4. And we almost got 4.
Team Secret – Team Nigma
With its captain KuroKy still inactive due to his arm injury, Team Nigma was expected to lose this match very quickly. Secret had dominated the Group Stage of ESL One Germany 2020, qualifying for the Playoffs with 3 consecutive wins: 2 – 0 against Tempo, 2 – 0 against YellowSubmarine, and 2 – 0 against Liquid. In other words, total dominance.
By contrast, Nigma needed 5 matches to qualify with a modest record of 3 W – 2 L and showed no signs of strength whatsoever. In fact, they showed great weakness in every department, from drafting to team fights. But in spite of facing the strongest team in the world, Nigma managed to win the first game. Secret, being the team that it is, made a comeback and won the next two games, ending the series on a positive note. But the community was stunned by this mini-upset.
Team Liquid – mudgolems
With this victory over Liquid, FATA’s team made it official: mudgolems is now a tier 1 team, capable of beating the top competitors in Europe and CIS. The match was really difficult, going back and forth and having long games. But in the end, mudgolems won with a score of 2 – 1. No doubt, this was a huge upset in everyone’s eyes.
OG – Natus Vincere
After struggling to qualify for the Playoffs, Natus Vincere proved to be a strong team against OG and won with a really smart Lina + Doom hero combination. To be fair, OG’s drafts in game 1 and game 3 were weak and without synergy. But we still can’t deny Na’Vi’s excellent playstyle.
Vikin.gg – Alliance
This was probably the biggest upset of the tournament. At the end of two long games that lasted close to 45 minutes each, Vikin.gg managed to beat Alliance with Bloodseeker. It was a painful match to watch, just because I was rooting for s4 and Alliance. But Vikin.gg had an amazing performance. If they can do the same thing in the next match, they will definitely beat Na’Vi with this type of skill-level. But I think that Alliance lost because of the draft and Na’Vi will most likely learn something from their defeat.
Team Nigma – Team Liquid
In the Lower Bracket of ESL One Germany 2020, Team Nigma got eliminated by Liquid after taking a 1 – 0 lead. This was a bit of a surprise in light of what Nigma had managed to do in its match against Secret. But it was still a normal result given that the team is competing without its most important member.
In the upcoming matches, we will have the chance to see FATA’s team, mudgolems, compete against Team Secret. This will be a formidable test for mudgolems and I don’t think they’re ready for it. Every indicator suggests a quick 2 – 0 for Puppey’s team in this match.
In the other Upper Bracket match, Natus Vincere will have to beat Vikin.gg to advance. If they avoid the mistakes made by Alliance, I think their overall strength will allow them to overcome this lesser-skilled opponent.