Russia’s top sixteen StarCraft II players, along with Ukraine’s top eight, gathered in Kiev, Ukraine on July 21 and 22 for the StarCraft II World Championship Series (WCS) Russian Federation and Ukraine Nationals. The epic and intense battles decided which players would be worthy of representing their countries in the WCS Europe Finals in September. The event took place in Kiev’s biggest games center, the Kiev CyberSport Arena.
The first day saw most of the favorites advance through the Ukrainian brackets, although not everything went according to plan for Oleksii “White-Ra” Krupnyk in his match against Aleksandr “Bly” Svusyuk. Bly took advantage of White-Ra’s slip-up when he missed a vortex, ruthlessly sending the talented tactician to the Consolation Bracket. Bly then continued to show his solid gameplay in his match against Eugin “Strelok” Oparyshev. Although Strelok had only seen flawless victories up until then, he couldn’t bypass the talented zerg.
Strelok descended to the Consolation Bracket to face a calm but totally unstoppable White-Ra. The “Beast from the East” dispatched his opponent with a decisive win, just as he had with favorite Mihaylo “Kas” Hayda in the previous round.
Leaving Strelok in third place, White-Ra once again faced Bly in the Grand Final, but was eventually defeated after a series of fierce battles. Bly was crowned the new Ukrainian champion, and will represent his country together with runner-up White-Ra in the Europe Finals.
The Russian Federation Nationals started later in the day. After two intense rounds, Dmitry “Happy” Kostin, Sergey “Roll” Moroz, Artem “sLivko” Garavtsov, and Oleg “TitaN” Kuptsov had claimed the top four spots in the Championship Bracket.
The battles became even fiercer on day two, with each player doing his best to earn one of the coveted spots in the Europe Finals. TitaN and Happy eventually reached the final of the Championship Bracket, but despite a valiant effort, TitaN fell to Team Empire’s terran.
Meanwhile in the Consolation Bracket, Yury “Neytpoh” Karev started to gain speed but was stopped by sLivko, who was fighting it out in the lower bracket courtesy of TitaN. After his victory over the protoss Neytpoh, sLivko moved past his fellow zerg opponent Anton “Aristeo” Vasilyev, who until that moment had been tearing through the Consolation Bracket. Shortly after, sLivko faced TitaN a second time. TitaN proved to be his nemesis, eliminating sLivko from the tournament and granting him third place.
The Grand Final between TitaN and Happy saw a great display of skill from both players. TitaN managed to emerge victorious after two grueling best-of-three series, winning the well-deserved Russian Federation championship. TitaN’s victory earned him a slot in the Europe Finals – and it also means that he is guaranteed a spot in the Battle.net World Championship in China in November!
Happy and sLivko took second and third places respectively and will represent Russia along with TitaN in the Europe Finals.
Congratulations are also due to Ukrainian champion Bly and runner-up White-Ra, who are heading to the Europe Finals to represent Ukraine.
Well played, everyone! Good luck in the future WCS events!
Videos of the Matches
Shoutcasters (English): Kevin "RotterdaM" van der Kooi, Dennis "HasuObs" Schneider, James "Kaelaris" Carrol
Shoutcasters (Russian Federation): Ruslan "Adolf" Bazhenov, Vladislav "kaby" Perchik
Shoutcasters (Ukraine): Trushlyakov "Alex007" Aleksey, Michael "Olsior" Zverev