Week #35 of the ESL Open Cups saw familiar faces grab victories. Stats claimed his fifth Korean Cup victory, equaling Zest and Solar's count to create a triumvirate on top of the server. HeRoMaRinE secured an unprecedented fifth consecutive European Cup win amid a thinning field of competitors, increasing his total to a stupendous seventeen. Finally, Solar returned to the American server to dine on gold for his second breakfast, having missed out on a win at home earlier in the day.
Up to Cup #35 the leading duo of the Korean ESL Open medal ranking consisted of Zest and Solar at five gold medals, with Stats following closely behind them. On Monday, the Afreeca Protoss equalized the count, securing a strong victory over Dream and then getting a walk-over against Solar, who had to play a team match instead (unfortunately for Solar, he failed to lock-up a win for KaiZi Gaming). These GTC-induced default wins are starting to become a regular feature of the Korean cups, with bracket luck sometimes providing easy access to the finals. There, Stats met his second rival in the rankings in Zest, who had already played several PvP series before clashing with the Afreeca player, and seemingly ran out of steam after winning the first map. Stats then started a streak and took three wins in a row to make it his fifth ESL Open Cup KR victory. Next week, one of the three leaders may pull ahead again, but for now a triumvirate rules Korea.
HeRoMaRinE's current ESL Open Cup EU win streak:
Such problems are unknown to the American server, where the trophy changes hands almost weekly. This week, Solar was able to come out on top of the pack, continuing his tradition of trying to win at least one competition out of the Korean and American ESL Open Cups. Since scheduling ruined his chances at a victory in his home region, the NA edition had to pay the price. Namshar notably took down both SpeCial and Vanya, showing his teeth despite the elimination from the DH Open NA. On the other side of the bracket, Cham made Solar at least fight hard to reach the finals, but after overcoming the Mexican Zerg it was a comfortable ride to the title for our victor, who dismantled Namshar without a map loss. This is the fourth gold medal for Solar in the ESL Open Cup AM, bringing up his overall count to nine, shiny Liquipedia disks.
ESL Open Cup winners earn $200 in prize money and 10 ESL Pro Tour points. Players who finish second earn 5 ESL Pro Tour points and $100. A top 4 finish guarantees at least $50. Week #36 of ESL Open Cups is set to take place on September 14th.
European Server Cup #35 (Click for full bracket)
Americas Server Cup #35 (Click for full bracket)