With CORSAIR DreamHack Masters Malmö 2019 wrapped up, we got a taste of the return of Swedish Counter-Strike in the game we all love. Coming into the tournament no one would have guessed that this group of players would be able to claim the title for their own.
After being absent for seven months Flusha returned to the scene and teamed up with former teammates KRIMZ and JW. Alongside his addition to the roster we saw Golden coming back and taking the lead for the team. This time around the roster included the new wonderboy of the scene, Brollan.
The Swedes started out the event with a disappointing loss to ENCE. It looked like this wasn’t the time for the roster yet. After their initial match they had to fight it out with Tyloo, but it was clear the Swedes were the better team. They steamrolled the Chinese squad on the third map to advance a little further into the tournament.
The following matches were against G2 and FURIA, two other teams that came into Malmö with a recent roster change. The mental fortitude of the Swedes seemed a deciding factor in their wins here. The first map was a thriller as the teams went deep into overtime, a bizarre scoreline of 34-32, the second map came far easier as the Brazilian squad seemed to be broken after the first map.
We witnessed a Swedish clash in the playoffs. NiP, the well-known and infamous rivals of FNATIC were the next opponent. The crowd were in heavy favour of the Ninjas, but it didn’t seem to stop the boys at all. While they took the first map and looked prime for a swift 2-0, it was Nuke when the Ninjas came right back into it. The last map of the series was Overpass and FNATIC had no problem of dealing with their Swedish brethren. They were now the chosen ones to take on the enormous challenge that is Astralis.
The Swedish-Danish clash was a damn thriller to say the least! FNATIC had a few win conditions and it didn’t seem like they would close it out on Nuke. On a map that Astralis were so comfortable with, FNATIC managed to clinch hard-earned victory. The 4-time major champion had been dealt with, the crowd was now fully focused on their hometown heroes being able to take that trophy.
Vitality who had been looking very solid all throughout the tournament with the addition of Shox in place of NBK was the final hurdle in the road to victory for FNATIC. The veto seemed in favour of the French with some of their strongest maps coming through. Inferno was a win for FNATIC while the French had already secured Dust 2 at that point.
What followed was a clash on Mirage. A third map in the final, a thriller of a game. In true FNATIC fashion there were moments of insane play and the final round itself brought it full-circle as it was the CZ-75, one of the weapons FNATIC had previously been associated with so much, that helped them through the final round.
In front of the home crowd, a story unfolded like no other. FNATIC came into the tournament with a very rough start and were one map away from being eliminated. Through mental fortitude, they overcame the struggles in the matches, were versatile and overpowered their enemies with superb shotcalling. This marks perhaps the resurgence of Swedish Counter-Strike. It’s something we’ll just have to see.