Astralis met their counterpart Team Liquid in day three of the BLAST Pro Series Global Final on Saturday, December 14th. These two teams have gone at it like cats and dogs for years. So, it is no surprise to see them at the top against each other again.
Team Liquid were looking to make their way back to the top after a string of disappointing results over the last few months. Liquid’s last tournament victory was back in July at IEM Chicago 2019. Since then, Liquid have failed to beat the likes of Astralis, Fnatic, and Evil Geniuses in some of the bigger competitions of CS:GO.
Take a look at the recap below to see who took home the gold and the $350,000 first place prize.
Grand Final: Team Liquid vs. Astralis
Map 1 - Inferno
Usually one of the most intense matches starts off with the Grand Final handgun match. It set the tone for most of the maps economy. While it started a little slow, Team Liquid traveled as a pack. Bomb went down faster than Astralis wanted, but they were ready to pounce. They ran through liquid and defused the bomb for the win.
Astralis took the next few rounds easily. They set up a good crossfire in Rrund four where Magisk picked up a triple kill for the win. They continued that momentum for another few rounds and only won round eight by the skin of their teeth with a bomb defuse. However, their eight-round streak finally ended in round nine when Liquid took out device and Magisk within the first minute of the match. 8 - 1 Astralis.
Round 10 was a heavy grenade match, but it only worked out in Astralis’ favor when only NAF was left for Liquid and he tried so hard to plant the bomb until Xyp9x takes him out. In round 12, Liquid picked up another win after good trade off killing in the houses.
Astralis’ econ wasn’t great going into round 12, so Liquid was able to pick up a few wins. In round 15, Masgisk came in with a 4 kill sniper spree to give them one more win going into the half time break. Half Time Score: 11 - 5 Astralis.
The new handgun round starts with Liquid just cleaning up after losing Stewie2K, but Twistzz shows what revenge means with a double kill clean up. Stewie2K must have felt bad about the handgun round because he comes back for an easy double kill and Liquid took round 17.
It doesn’t take Astralis long to make their move. In round 18, they came in so aggressive that Liquid couldn’t keep up. They were able to plant the bomb, and Liquid tried their best to make their move, but Astrails was ready once they set their trap. 12 - 6 Astralis.
After a three-round streak, Astralis found themselves in a good spot, and Liquid had to work as hard as possible to try and play catch up. By round 23, Astralis was already in match point. NAF started the round off with a double kill, and while the bomb was planted, Magisk was the only one trying to clean up. However, Liquid defused the bomb after taking out Magisk to hold off Astralis’ map win. 15 - 8 Astralis.
Round 24 was Astralis’ panic match where they tried to rush the bomb site, throwing caution to the wind, to see if they could shut it down as fast as possible. It didn’t work. 15 - 9 Astralis.
Liquid held Astralis for another two rounds, but ultimately, Astralis took their final point in round 27 by getting the bomb planted and kill exchanges until device finally got the final kill. 16 - 11 Astralis.
Map 2 - Nuke
Nuke was Astralis’ pick, so it was important for them to try and shut this down so they didn’t have to go to a third map. With a 78% win rate on Nuke, Astralis were the favorite. The handgun round went to Liquid after EliGe and Stewie2K blasted through the match. If you happened to blink, you would have missed it. Astralis answered with a faster bomb plant in round 2, but with Liquid’s econ higher and better guns, they still were able to stop them. 2 - 0 Liquid.
However, the streak only lasted those two matches after Astralis aggressively took round three and steam rolled over Liquid. They kept that momentum for the next four rounds with team wipes and bomb plants. 5 - 3 Astralis.
Round 9 starts with EliGe getting a quad-kill as if he could predict the future and nitr0 finishing it off. This kept Liquid close in wins that they desperately needed to do. Astralis answers with a round 10 B site bomb plant and gla1ve with a double kill. It was a back-and-forth win for Liquid in round 11 when Twistzz came with a double kill and EliGe cleaned up from the flank They grabbed another easy win in the next round for the tie up. 6 - 6 Tie.
Round 13 was a trade off kill match and ended with a knife kill during a defusal that was absolutely insane. Which Liquid answered with a steam roller team kill to tie it up again, 7 - 7.
device took out all of Liquid in round 15. However, when device was alone, Twistzz took him out after running through a molotov for a win and gained the lead going into Half Time. Half Time score: 8- 7 Liquid.
With such back-and-forth round wins, you could feel the anxiety from both teams. That led us into the next handgun round. NAF really cleaned up while they also planted the bomb. This would keep their econ up for the next round, but device runs through them with a triple kill. In the next round, glave ran through the entire time again, tying it up. The slaughter didn’t stop there with dupreeh on a quad-kill. 10 - 9 Astralis.
When round 20 began, Astralis lost dupreeh and Magisk pretty early. Liquid planted the bomb, so Astralis took a back seat to keep their econ up. Liquid gets the tie up again on a given win. Astralis answers with a device triple kill. 11 - 10 Astralis.
Astralis continued the streak for another two rounds. Astralis ran over Liquid with multi-kills that gave them a huge econ advantage. While in round 24, Liquid planted the bomb, and Australis took out the rest of their team and defuses for another win. 14 - 10 Astralis.
Liquid picks up a very tense round when it was a 2 v 1 in their favor. Liquid got the bomb plant down in the next round, but Astralis had an easy team wipe for game point. 15 - 11 Astralis.
Round 27 could have been Astralis’ final round, but Stewie2K got an early double kill and made Xyp9x fall back. Liquid won with a bomb plant. Liquid only needed three more round wins to get into Overtime. However, in Round 28 after a hard exchange of kills, Liquid was left with NAF. Astralis made their move to defuse the bomb as NAF slowly crept across the floor to take out dupreeh. NAF was just too slow. The defusal happened while dupreeh had only 25 hit points left!
Astralis won map 2, 16 - 11. This was also the end of the Grand Finals without having to go into OT or a map three. Astralis took home $350,000 and the BLAST Pro Series trophy.
What did you think of this match-up? Tell us in the comments section below!
Top image via Twitter/@BLASTProSeries
This article was written by John D. AKA SomeBeardy2Love. John has been gaming for over 30 years, has a bow tie tattoo, and watches anime and Bob’s Burgers. He has a sponsored beard and a modest book collection.