Fnatic beat Origen 3-1, move to face MAD Lions in winners bracket final

Fnatic edged out a 3-1 victory over Origen in Saturday evening’s LEC playoffs night. This guarantees Fnatic at least a top 3 finish, while Origen will drop down to the second round of the lower bracket, waiting for the winner of Misfits and Rogue tonight.

What many expected to be a close series ended anything but. Fnatic were dominant in the first games and sprinted to an easy 2-0 lead, looking to make it a clean sweep over Origen. In the third game, however, a poor showing from Zdravets “Hylissang” Galabov on Trundle allowed Origen to rack up kill after kill and take stranglehold over the mid game.

In valiant attempt to redeem himself, Hylissang began split pushing Origen’s side lanes and even took down the bot lane inhibitor, significantly slowing down Origen’s chances of winning the game. For several minutes, it even looked like Fnatic could turn the game around somehow, as they successfully avoided direct engagements and played a guerrilla warfare League of Legends. Teamfights were so scarce, in fact, that Barney “Alphari” Morris’ Maokai was at one point involved in just four of Origen’s 24 kills.

When the first real 5v5 fight broke out, however, it was clear just how far ahead Origen’s players were. Fnatic were team-wiped and game 4 was on.

The first 25 minutes were all Origen once again, as Elias “Upset” Lipp’s Aphelios had secured five of the nine kills and had taken his team to a 4K gold lead. But by being timid and not forcing their advantage enough, Origen gave Fnatic the room to breathe and find the one teamfight that turned it all in their favor. A four-for-nil team fight at Baron pit melted Origen’s gold lead, surrendered the objective to Fnatic and ended the series at 3-1 in favor of the black jerseys.

This sets up the unlikely winners bracket final between MAD and Fnatic, the winner of which will be the first 2020 LEC Spring grand finalist. MAD shocked the world by taking down G2 Esports in five games, with three of their rookies showing up big for the win. Jungler Zhiqiang “Shad0w” Zhao is on everyone’s radar and the battle against Oskar “Selfmade” Boderek, who was instrumental to Fnatic’s win over Origen, shapes up to be a high-octane match-up.

The LEC continues tonight at 17:00 CEST with Misfits versus Rogue. The winner plays Origen on Friday, Apr. 10. The grand finals are set for Apr. 19.

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