Chris “dexter” Nong will be Australia’s sole representative going forward at the PGL Stockholm Major following Mousesports’ round five win over BIG, while for Renegades, their Major run came to an end against their old captain.
Renegades will be ruing multiple opportunities following their 1-3 elimination.
Slow starts in the best-of-one’s against Movistar Riders (13-16) and BIG (9-16) cost them dearly, and in their sole win over paiN Gaming (16-14), RNG were forced to come from behind twice.
It was a similar story in their elimination series against Mouz, with Robin “ropz” Kool (32-19, 116 ADR, 1.70 HLTV rating) dominating Renegades from the get go on Mirage.
The Estonian superstar dropped 24 kills in the opening 11-4 half for Mouz, but through determination and teamwork, plus a masterclass in sniping from Alistair “aliStair” Johnston (29-19, 102 ADR, 1.48 rating), RNG wrestled back the map.
A 12-3 half from the Oceanic squad consigned Mouz to a 14-16 loss, and with RNG warmed up, an upset was brewing.
Joshua “INS” Potter (23-16, 94 ADR, 1.30 HLTV rating) was hungry to end the series in two, leading RNG to their first opening half lead of the tournament — up 8-7 on Inferno.
But against his old team, Mouz captain Chris “dexter” Nong (21-12, 84 ADR, 1.45 HLTV rating) turned up the heat, putting on a 9-2 CT half to win 16-10 and force a third map.
RNG by now were well and truly out of gas, with ropz (24-13, 1.57 HLTV rating) and David “frozen” Čerňanský (25-10, 127 ADR, 1.94 HLTV rating) combining to send “The Boys” packing 16-6 on Vertigo.
For a team with minimal international exposure in the lead-up to the Major, Renegades were commended on their performance in Stockholm.
Of particular note; while the team struggled early in maps, their resilience in the back half of each game was astounding.
In all but one map in the Challengers stage, Renegades won the second half, but in many cases the opening half deficit proved too much to recover from fully.
While INS and aliStair were explosive, it was Jordan “Hatz” Bajic’s consistency that played a big part in RNG’s competitiveness in the opening best-of-ones, while Liam “malta” Schembri’s 27-kill effort all but secured the side’s sole victory over paiN Gaming.
Mousesports pushed on to meet German side BIG in the final qualifier series, with Mouz narrowly edging out a 2-1 victory (10-16, 16-12, 16-12) to book their spot in the top 16.
Frederik “acoR” Gyldstrand had been panned for his mediocre performance at the Major, but silenced critics in the crucial best-of-three qualifier.
Renegades’ 2021 European venture isn’t over with their elimination at the major. They’ll remain in the region for the next three weeks ahead of the EPL Conference — RNG’s last attempt to qualify for ESL Pro League Season 15.
For Dexter and Mouz, they’ll have little time to rest, with the top 16 Legends stage beginning tomorrow.