Spirit have completed their undefeated run in ESL One: Road to Rio – CIS by defeating Winstrike 2-0 in the grand final (16-13 Dust2, 16-11 Nuke).
With seven BO3 wins in a row and a 14-2 map record, Spirit claimed the Road to Rio – CIS title convincingly, taking home the first place prize: RM65 k ($15,000) and 1600 RMR points. Going into the grand final, Spirit were overwhelming favorites as CIS powerhouses such as Natus Vincere and forZe suffered group stage exits.
Despite being the underdogs, Winstrike put up a good fight in the match, with Aleksey “El1an” Gusev pushing them into early leads. However, Spirit showed composure and fought back on both Dust2 and Nuke, claiming the series in two maps.
Winstrike were off to a strong CT start on their map pick, Dust2, as El1an was leading the charge with the AWP and causing issues to Spirit. The score was 7-2 in the favor of Vladyslav “bondik” Nechyporchuk and co. before chopper’s troops broke into B on an eco, but still only managed five rounds on the T-side of the map.
A clean pistol win for Spirit started their comeback on CT, with an impeccable defence following. With their second rifle buy, Winstrike managed their first Terrorist round win, but the combination of chopper and Nikolay “mir” Bityukov — who woke up after posting just two kills in the first half — saw Spirit claim ten out eleven rounds down the strech and reach map point (15-11). Winstrike exploited the A defence to stay afloat, but eventually faltered as mir pulled off the defuse which ended the map 16-13.
The momentum from Dust2 was carried on to Nuke, as Spirit went up 5-0 on the T side and looked to extend, but Abay “Hobbit” Khasenov helped his team get on the board and following that, turn around the half to finish with a minimal lead, 8-7. bondik’s quad kill on the pistol pushed Winstrike further into the lead, but after the initial 3-0 as T, Spirit was again looking like the more dangerous team.
Following Viktor “Lack1” Boldyrev’s unsuccessful 1v3 clutch attempt, Viktor “sdy” Orudjev and co. tied the score at 11-11, and continued confidently as the half progressed. Winstrike were struggling to find openings, and Spirit made no slipups, closing out their map pick 16-11 to claim the victory in ESL One: Road to Rio – CIS.