NAVI’s Bid for IEM Sydney Victory Falls Short Without s1mple and Stand-In

CS:GO, Counter Strike, Navi

The beginning of the CS2 era has not been ideal for NAVI fans, particularly in terms of pure results. However, when considering external factors, the situation appears more favourable. This is primarily due to the absence of one of CS:GO’s greatest players, s1mple, who missed the tournament due to issues with his European residency papers. As a result, NAVI had to enlist their coach, B1ad3, as a stand-in. Given the challenging circumstances, the team performed admirably in an elimination match against FaZe Clan on October 17.

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The first map of the series, Overpass, did not go well for NAVI. FaZe Clan secured a 13-7 victory, seemingly positioning themselves for an easy win in the lower bracket matchup. The next map, Mirage, is known for its emphasis on individual skill and gunfighting prowess, making s1mple’s absence a significant disadvantage for NAVI.

However, NAVI managed to secure a convincing victory on Mirage with a remarkable 10-2 performance on the Terrorist side, thanks in large part to the stellar play of NAVI’s Valeriy “b1t” Vakhovskiy. They won Mirage 13-4 but ultimately lost the decider map, Inferno, with a score of 13-7. Unlike Mirage, NAVI struggled to find their footing on the T side of Inferno, only winning three rounds compared to FaZe’s nine. The deficit proved insurmountable.

The circumstances surrounding this match make it a peculiar day indeed when one can argue that the losing side appeared stronger. If you’re part of FaZe Clan, you might have preferred to close out the series on Mirage. Nevertheless, NAVI’s impressive T-side performance on Mirage without their star player serves as a significant morale booster. As they move forward in the CS2 calendar, NAVI will carry this momentum with them, while FaZe Clan will aim to rediscover their form throughout the tournament.

In the early days of the CS2 era, NAVI faced challenges as s1mple, one of CS:GO’s finest players, missed a tournament due to residency paperwork issues. Despite using their coach as a stand-in, NAVI displayed resilience, winning a match against FaZe Clan on Mirage with an impressive T-side performance. FaZe Clan ultimately secured the victory but NAVI’s stellar showing without their star player left them with valuable momentum for the CS2 calendar.