The EU Masters playoff started last week. The top two seeds of every group clashed for a semifinal place over four days. The LFL had there representatives in the top eight teams, all of their squads except Team BDS Academy making their way to the playoff. The NLC had two representatives, Bifrost and X7 Esports, while the DACH region’s Prime League, the Polish and Baltic Ultraliga and Spain’s Superliga had one team each.
LDLC OL 3-0 X7 Esports
The first match featured two champions going against each other - LFL’s LDLC OL and the NLC’s X7 Esports. The French team had a strong start to the series, winning the first game in under 25 minutes after an admittedly close fight in their opponents' base. X7 looked stronger in game 2, punishing several early mistakes and getting three quick dragons that resulted in a mountain soul 26 minutes in. It came to an elder dragon fight where LDLC secured the objective and won the decisive fight afterwards. The third game started more or less evenly, but an ace for the LFL team 18 minutes in turned into a quick snowball and they won confidently four minutes later to complete the sweep.
Bifrost 0-3 AGO ROGUE
Friday’s series featured the Ultraliga’s AGO ROGUE facing off the remaining NLC team Bifrost. Although Rogue were only the second seed in this match, they had a strong start to the series, keeping a gold and objective lead for much of the game before taking a mountain soul and the Baron to close out the opening game. The second series saw the two teams on a more even footing for the first 20 minutes, but eventually the Ultraliga team punished their rivals’ bad positioning to get two kills and the Baron. This proved to be the turning point and soon, the Polish squad was on match point. The NLC representatives had a much stronger start to the third game, but as the mid-game went on AGO’s good teamfighting and positioning allowed them to equalize. The game was eventually decided on a split call, where Rogue survived a 4v5 and killed the recalling mid laner so their splitpusher could end the game.
Karmine Corp 3-1 Unicorns of Love Sexy Edition
The 2021 EU Masters Champions Karmine Corp faced off against the last hope of the DACH region, Unicorns of Love Sexy Edition. The series started with a long and hotly contested game one where both teams had a shot a victory and the Unicorns survived an elder dragon push to snatch the win. The second game was close for the first 20 minutes, but a single misplay decided it in KCorps’ favor as they collapsed on their opponents as they were doing the Baron and, with four kills and a good wave, ended the game before UoL could recover. What followed were two decisive wins for the French team, who had stellar early games that gave them huge leads into the mid-game. The Unicorns had moments of their own, but they were not enough to bring them back into the back, leading to a 3-1 for Karmine Corp.
Vitality.bee 3-0 Fnatic TQ
The last series pitted Vitality.bee against the sole Spanish representative in playoffs, Fnatic TQ. First blood went to the LFL representatives, who punished a key mistake by Fnatic 14 minutes in to assert their dominance on the map, eventually getting the infernal soul and Baron on their way to victory. The Fnatic academy team looked better in game 2 and even secured an ocean soul, before Vitality recovered and opened up their base and won with a backdoor while the Spanish team was ready to fight at the elder dragon. The LFL team executed just that bit better in game 3 as well, coming back after Fnatic had gotten soul point to close out the game.
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The EU Masters continues this week. On Tuesday, LDLC OL will take on AGO Rogue, while Karmine Corp or Vitality.bee would contest for the second final spot on Wednesday, May 3rd.