Paper Rex and Fnatic arrive on Day 5 of VCT 2022 Stage 2 Masters
Benkai Paper Rex Day 5 Stage 2 Masters
Provided by Riot Games.

Paper Rex and Fnatic arrive on Day 5 of VCT 2022 Stage 2 Masters

Both number one seeds from APAC and EMEA win their first matches

Day 5 of the VALORANT Champions Tour 2022 Stage 2 Masters tournament was the first taste of the knockout stage. Today, we got to see two teams’ debuts in Paper Rex and Fnatic after topping their respective regions; they both ended up winning their matches and continuing in the upper bracket.

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The first match of Day 5 was Paper Rex versus Guild Esports, and it was a great example of hyper-aggressiveness versus adaptive, capable defense. The tale of the unstoppable sword and the unbreakable shield went the sword’s way to start, with Paper Rex taking Ascent confidently 13-4. It was more of a team effort, but the tip of the sword continued to be Wang Jing “Jinggg” Jie on his signature Raze. Map two of Fracture showed more understanding on the side of Guild, getting more rounds in just the first half than they did the previous map. Heading into the half tied and ending up in overtime, Khalish “d4v41” Rusyaidee clutched out the overtime and series 2-0.

The battle of EMEA between Fnatic and FunPlus Phoenix was the second and final match of the day. Going into Icebox, a map that Fnatic have been nearly perfect on, FPX took an early lead into halftime, 8-4. Yet, Nikita “Derke” Sirmitev and Fnatic seemed to regain their form to win the map 13-9. For Haven, it was just the Derke show as Fnatic went into the half up 10-2. They ended the map 13-4 and match 2-0, facing Paper Rex next in the winner’s bracket.

Play of the day

Throughout the day, there were plenty of funny and exciting moments, but hardly any big single-round pop-offs. However, for what could be his last game with FPX, substitute Mathias “SEIDER” Seider proved his skills with a 4k clutch, against Derke no less. Considering how good Fnatic are on Icebox, SEIDER helped make it a close map for FPX.

Day 5 Stage 2 Masters Copenhagen MVP

As mentioned earlier, the best player on Day 5 was easily Fnatic’s Derke. After going down on a map Fnatic developed a great record on, Derke helped bring Fnatic back on Chamber. After winning that map, Derke made several more crucial plays to help his team roll through FPX on Haven, winning them that map and the series. The best stat to show his impact on Haven is his 372 ACS and 24 kills, leading the lobby by 9.

As someone who has developed a tendency to play even better on LAN than online, Derke proved it on Day 5 of the VCT 2022 Stage 2 Masters tournament.

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Michael Czar
Polish-Canadian game enthusiast. I've been entrenched in gaming for as long as I can remember, with my first game being Pokemon Yellow and my most played games being Borderlands 2 and Overwatch. I have a degree in Film Studies, but writing about esports just makes my job all the better.