Renegades have claimed victory in the final events of the Oceanic CS:GO season, besting Order twice in both tournaments. IEM Beijing-Haidian and Dreamhack Masters Winter were the last two events for the region in a year that Renegades dominated.
These tournaments have pushed the winning streak of the Renegades to 10-straight as they still definitively sit as the top team in Australia for the year.
IEM Beijing saw the return of the top teams after an extended break in top tier events following Pro League Finals. Vertex stole the show with a surprise finish in the closed qualifier and their first showing at an event of this calibre.
Avant went into the event with Andy “Noobster” Zhang as their 5th player, as the roster officially is still only four and Order had recently acquired the services of Wilson “WillyKS” Sugianto as their coach. Meanwhile, Renegades just had their coach Torbjørn “mithR” Nyborg leave the team for Mousesports.
For the Renegades, IEM Beijing was business as usual as they ploughed through the event without conceding a map.
“Our practice going into this event was pretty bad, a lot of teams have finished for the year so finding scrims was tough and it was some of the lowest hours I’ve had prior to an event personally.”Simon “Sico” Williams
“We did have some close games and the lack of practice showed, but it did end up being business as usual”
As the year progressed, it was clear that the teams below the Renegades such as Order, Avant and Chiefs were catching up. Maps would get close and overtimes would occur but it wouldn’t be enough at IEM Beijing.
“It’s hard to say where the other teams in the region are at, but overall I would say everyone is getting better… It can be hard to judge as it depends on what they’re doing to improve and how we are playing on the day”
“I think [Vertex] is a promising line-up. We’ve been scrimming them a lot lately and you can feel they’re trying to implement good CS into the way they play. They have some talent and appear to be good mates which is what you want in an up and coming team.”
While things did work out in the end for the Renegades, Dreamhack Winter would see them tested as strong as they ever have been after conceding their first series since June at the hands of Order.
The Chiefs managed to land themselves a spot in the final event of the year in place of Rooster. Maclane “Gump” Cross would also play as their 5th instead of Yaman “yam” Ergeneko who was subbed into the squad as they search for an official 5th player continues.
But the talking point of Dreamhack Winter was Order’s upset victory against Renegades in the Upper Bracket Final.
“It fired us up and reminded us that they are human and can still be beaten. When you break that barrier once, it can be all you need to get moving and it will give us a big boost going into 2021.”Alistair “Alistair” Johnston
After trading each other’s map pick, Order convincingly took the series on Nuke with a 16-6 scoreline and sent the Renegades into the lower bracket finals against Avant.
“Going into Dreamhack we practised differently as we didn’t feel scrims were paying off. We opted to focus on theory and protocols, the boring stuff really.”
Despite this upset, it would not be enough for Order to claim a trophy as the Renegades came back to face them in the Best-of-Five finals with a single map disadvantage.
In straight maps, Renegades took the series 3-1 on Inferno, Mirage and Dust 2.
“Now that there is the time going into 2021, we can properly implement our coach, a system that we’ve been talking about and how we want to be practising. Our main goal is to take it to RNG and with a coach we can do this.”
The conclusion of the Oceanic Counter-Strike calendar of 2020 has reinforced the same storylines that have been reiterated after each event.
Renegades are outperforming the lower-ranked teams and considering their ability to dominate over such a length of time, their opponents will need to put in the work to contest them in 2021.
The next tier of teams such as Order, Avant and Chiefs can all perform well on their day but without consistent results to back them up and instability within some rosters, it isn’t a contest when facing off with the Renegades.
There are also a handful of promising teams such as the Vertex line-up who are doing what they can to get noticed and make it into some of the events in Australia. Due to the current nature of the circuit, it has been difficult for these squads to qualify for the 4-team events that have frequented the calendar but it has not prevented the same squads from doing damage where they can.
Early 2021 will most likely be similar to 2020 in terms of events, but as the year progresses it will become clear whether internationally events are on the cards once more and whether or not the same four squads will dominate the scene once again.