Vitality have passed the IEM Summer quarter-finals with flying colors after securing a commanding win against Virtus.pro on two maps (Inferno 16-10, Vertigo 16-5). The semi-finals will witness a rematch from the first round of the Flashpoint 3 lower bracket between the French side and OG, in which Vitality confirmed their edge over the European squad with their third consecutive 2-0 victory in the matchup.
The quarter-final series saw Kévin “misutaaa” Rabier in impressive form as he and Mathieu “ZywOo” Herbaut led the way to the comfortable victory. The 18-year-old has averaged a 1.33 rating over seven maps played during IEM Summer so far, showcasing an unprecedented level of performance following five months full of tournaments in which he was rated below 1.00.
misutaaa has continued to showcase an unprecedented level
“I think it’s him having more confidence,” Dan “apEX” Madesclaire said on the topic of misutaaa‘s improvement in an interview conducted shortly after the match. “For more than three months misutaaa has been really sick in practice, but unfortunately he wasn’t showing up during matches. […] We tried to change a few things to make him even more comfortable, and I think it’s working pretty well.”
The first quarter-final series was expected to go to all three maps after a predictable veto produced Inferno and Vertigo as the first two, but it all changed when Virtus.pro faltered on their opening pick. The young French trio of ZywOo, misutaaa, and the still-fresh addition Jayson “Kyojin” Nguyen Van combined to put together a strong defense for Vitality on Inferno, and after a relatively comfortable closing the CIS-based team’s chances looked doomed as they were heading into their least successful map.
With just one win to their name in the last eight matches on Vertigo, there seemed to be little hope for Virtus.pro on Vitality‘s pick, and the Frenchmen went on to confirm their position of the favorites with a dominant display. Dzhami “Jame” Ali & co. struggled after they chose to begin the second map on the Terrorist side, clinching just three rounds on the offense as Vitality rallied to a 16-5, 2-0 victory.