Week #69 of the ESL Open Cups saw Solar achieve his first win of the 2021/22 season in the Korean edition, while Clem continued his win streak with a fifth victory in Europe. Finally, DongRaeGu secured his first ever success in the American ESL Open Cup.
After winning two American server cups in previous weeks, Solar notched another first place finish in his home region with a convincing 3-0 over Cure in the finals. Taking out Nice in the Ro8, Solar's real challenge appeared with Zest in the semi-finals: trading maps with the Protoss, the KaiZi Gaming player narrowly survived to advance to the finals. Cure had less problems getting there, cutting through Has and Creator with relative ease. The bracket could have been a lot tougher, had there not been an early upset: previoust week's champion Dark was eliminated with a 0-2 score by none other than KeeN, who seems to be ramping up his activity after returning from military service (KeeN lost to Creator in the next round).
'Nothing new in Europe' may well be your first reaction after reading that Clem has secured a fifth win in a row in the region's ESL Open Cup on Monday, but apart from the victor Week #69 had a fair share of surprises to keep viewers guessing what might happen next. With both Reynor and HeRoMaRinE participating, it is a small miracle that Clem's final opponent was his countryman ShaDoWn. The Protoss player took down DIMAGA, Kelazhur, PtitDrogo and Krystianer to reach the finals. Interestingly enough, it was actually Poland's Krystianer who took down Reynor earlier on, opening up that half of the bracket for a surprise candidate to challenge Clem. The Liquid player's side of the tournament tree should have culminated in a clash between himself and Big Gabe for the spot in the finals, but the mousesports player, too, suffered early elimination with Kas being the culprit. Too no one's surprise, Clem secured an easy and clean victory in the finals and is now one victory away from equalizing HeRoMaRinE's win streak of six cups in a row from the previous season.
As we are in the second season of the ESL Open Cups by now, debuts of any kind are in short supply, but nevertheless DRG delivered one on Monday, securing his first ever victory in the American edition of the tournament. The Zerg took out many of the usual candidates to make it into the top four of these weeklies, eliminating the Team eXoN trio of MaxPax, SpeCial and Gerald to reach the finals, where Zest awaited him as the final boss. The Protoss had a much easier path to the finals in comparison, merely having to take out Future and Strange from the notable participants. The Dragon Phoenix Gaming player took the first map from the Zerg, but from then on DRG stayed on point and gave no quarters, marking down three wins in a row to close the series out.
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. Edition #70 of the ESL Open Cups will take place on the 9th (Korea) and the 10th of May (Europe and America).
European Server Cup #69 (Click for full bracket)
Americas Server Cup #69 (Click for full bracket)