The last time the two teams faced one another was in the lower bracket quarterfinals at Masters Copenhagen, where FPX handed the Korean squad a convincing 2-0 loss.
DRX ultimately got their revenge against FPX in Istanbul, with an epic 19-17 overtime win on Ascent – the longest game of the tournament so far.
DRX win a back-and-forth overtime thriller on Ascent
Despite Ascent being FPX’s map pick, DRX had a great start with Yu “BuZz” Byung-chul’s Jett dominating the first six rounds on defense with a 13/3/2 KDA.
FPX then hit back and won four straight rounds of their own, finally finding an answer to their opponent’s aggressive plays. In Round 10, the EMEA squad countered DRX’s Mid Link and B Main push with Dmitry “SUYGETSU” Ilyushin and Pontus “Zyppan” Eek staying far back in B Lobby, which helped them avoid the enemy team’s utility.
DRX eventually pushed ahead to a seemingly decisive 12-8 lead, but they were unable to close out the game.
FPX regained momentum, winning four straight rounds to force the map into overtime. The Korean squad looked like they might lose the map after all, following a devastating 1v3 clutch from Ardis “ardiis” Svarenieks in the first overtime round.
However, Kim “stax” Gu-taek would not be denied. In the sixth overtime, he and Kim “Zest” Gi-seok pulled off an incredibly quick 2v4 retake that pushed their team to map point. Stax’s push from A Heaven earned him three kills, sending FPX reeling and struggling to respond.
The Korean squad ultimately took home Ascent, after converting their B Main push into a successful B site post-plant hold. While the first map was an intense back-and-forth battle, DRX’s map pick Breeze was heavily one-sided. The boys in blue sent their EMEA rivals to the lower bracket with a convincing 13-5 victory.
Stax said in a post-match interview that his team’s mentality going into their match against FPX helped them advance to the upper bracket semifinals.
“We didn’t treat them like the Masters champions,” he said. “We saw them just like any other European team.”
The Korean kings of Valorant are now set to face Brazilian powerhouse squad LOUD on September 12 at 10:00 p.m. GMT+8 | 7:00 a.m. PT | 2:00 p.m. GMT. The match will be broadcast live on the official Valorant Twitch and YouTube channels.