Gambit Esports stunned Team Nigma in two straight games to win their first match at the ESL One Los Angeles EU-CIS online regional league group stage. Gambit midlaner Danil “gpk” Skutin fueled his team’s victory in the series with an amazing Aegis steal to win game one.
Nigma opened the series with a heavy teamfight composition with Amer “Miracle-” Al-Barkawi on a Position 1 Ember Spirit, Aliwi “w33” Omar on a Position 2 Magnus, Ivan “MinD_ControL” Ivanov on Necrophos, Maroun “GH” Merhej on Earthshaker, and Kuro Salehi “Kuroky” Takhasomi on Chen.
Meanwhile, Gambit opted for a highly-mobile and hard-hitting lineup with gpk on Morphling, Kiyalbek “dream`” Tayirov on Lycan, Maxim “Shachlo” Abramovskikh on Pangolier, Danial “XSvamp1Re” Alibaev on a support Weaver, and Artiom “fng” Barshack on Grimstroke.
Nigma handily won the laning phase and enjoyed a 4,000 gold advantage 12 minutes into the game, but Gambit was able to chip away at their lead and buy time for their cores to come online by picking off w33 four straight times between the 14 and 20-minute marks.
While w33’s feeding spree slowed down Nigma’s midgame timing, they were still able to secure the first Aegis of the Immortal of the game for Miracle 22 minutes in and use it to start sieging Gambit’s base.
In that critical engagement, Gpk notched a triple kill to lead Gambit in shutting down Nigma’s push and exerting their control over the game.
Despite Gambit’s dominant position, Nigma looked like they found a way back into the game after picking off two enemy heroes to secure the second Aegis of the game for themselves.
However, gpk was able to slip into the pit and steal the Aegis from under Nigma’s noses to crush their hopes for a comeback. Gpk then grabbed another triple kill in the final clash of the game to force the GG call from Nigma after 35 minutes.
Gpk notched a game-high 13 kills while dream had 10 of his own, with the pair also only having three deaths between them, to lead Gambit to a convincing game one victory. Nigma seemed to have been shaken after that disastrous start to the series, as Gambit dominated them in game two to secure the sweep.
Gambit’s victory gives them a 1-2 record, tied with Nigma and three other teams in their group. Both Gambit and Nigma will look to improve their records as they continue their group stage campaigns on April 10, with Gambit taking on HellRaisers and Nigma going up against B8.