North American third seed Cloud9 have pulled off a huge upset on Day 4 of groups at Worlds 2021, taking down former world champions, Chinese organization FunPlus Pheonix.
C9 clawed their way through the play-in stage and only qualified for the main event on the last day with a clean sweep against PEACE. After losing the first three games of the group stage and facing likely elimination, C9 have once again turned things around with quick wins over Rogue and FPX.
C9’s miracle comeback at Worlds 2021
C9 entered Day 4 of Worlds needing a win against Rogue to continue their Worlds 2021 journey. DWG KIA’s win over FPX clinched the first qualification spot in the group and meant that there was only one spot left in the quarterfinals for Group A. C9 began the game against Rogue with an early game skirmish which went in their favour. They were able to transition the early game advantage into the mid-game, taking every objective from their opponents.
The Lillia and Irelia combination from C9’s Luka “Perkovic” Perkz and Robert “Blaber” Huang gave Rogue no hope in the game. Even though they managed to pick off certain C9 members in the mid-game, it was not enough to stop C9. Cloud9 ended their first game of the day in under 25 minutes with over a 12,000 gold lead.
After the win over Rogue, Cloud9 were immediately thrown into their second must-win game of the day. FPX’s Gao “Tian” Tian-Liang opted for the Jarvan IV, a champion on which he had not won any games on. C9 chose to follow in DK’s footsteps with picks of Twisted Face and Jayce. That combination worked in their favour and after a huge early game advantage again, C9 closed out the game with another clutch win.
Moreover, Cloud9’s Blaber stated in his Worlds 2021 post-match interview that C9 were especially confident for today after beating an EU team in scrims so bad that the other team cancelled scrims.
C9’s win over Rogue and FPX means that all teams are still in the race for the last quarterfinals spot at Group A. If C9 lose to DK, this group could still end in a three-way tie for second place.
Jimoh Rashidat is a freelance esports writer with over two years of experience. She covers FIFA, League of Legends and general gaming content.