On the 29th of August, the ESL Mobile Open (ESLMO) 2021 Fall: Malaysia grand finals came to a conclusion. After the dust had settled, Geek Fam was crowned the champions of ESLMO 2021 Fall: Malaysia.
As exciting as it is for Geek Fam to be crowned champions, their journey through ESL Mobile Open is just as gripping.
Geek Fam are the champions of ESL Mobile Open 2021 Fall: Malaysia, Source: ESL Facebook
Grim Performance in Group Stages
At the start of group stages, Geek Fam had a new lineup. OzoraVeki and Rumpel, the previous star players, were replaced with HaKi and EGO. Much to the dismay of many fans, Geek Fam was no longer the powerhouse of a team that they once were.
Alongside their poor performance, Geek Fam seemed to be struggling with their roster. By Day 5 of group stages, another roster shuffle happened. EGO, the Support, was out, and sixtynine joined the team as the new jungler. The previous jungler, Nyx, was then placed into the now-empty Support role.
Even then, Geek Fam’s performance was only marginally better. Throughout group stages, they had only won two sets of games out of the seven that they played. In the end, they placed sixth out of eight.
Another Shot at the Crown
As one of the bottom four performing teams, Geek Fam was placed into the Last Chance Qualifiers along with the other three teams. Namely, they were Splatzone Insomniax, Assassin Academy, and Silent Killer.
With a resounding victory over Silent Killer (3-1) and Splatzone Insomniax (3-0), Geek Fam seemed to have found their rhythm and were clearly ahead of the rest of the pack. Geek Fam had just scraped by to get back into the playoffs.
Lower Bracket Blues
Although Geek Fam was able to get into the playoffs, it didn’t get any easier. Being the Last Chance Qualifier team placed them in the Lower Bracket from the get-go. Their first match was against SEM9, the team that placed fourth during group stages.
Many fans expected Geek Fam to get knocked out by SEM9, but in an unexpected turn of events (the first of many), Geek Fam was able to emerge victorious with a 3-1 score. Geek Fam would proceed to the next stage, where they’d face off against the loser from the upper bracket.
That team would be SDGR EA EBLZ. Geek Fam had a bad matchup against them during group stages, but that was before the roster change. This time, Geek Fam was prepared enough to eke out another 3-1 score against SDGR EA EBLZ.
A New Horizon
Geek Fam was finally shaking off the poor impressions they had left during the ESLMO Fall 2021 group stages. Casters and rival players alike were complimenting Geek Fam on their newfound strength.
In a post-match interview, Ikut0 had asked Sagi from Berjaya Dragons which team he favored in the upcoming match between UndeRank and Geek Fam.
“Err…I feel like Momo (Geek Fam’s Dragon Laner) is starting to “wake up”. His performance has been amazing so far. On the other hand, Coffee (UndeRank’s Dragon Laner) is good too. In fact, I think he’s one of the best hypercarry players in Malaysia.” he said.
The casters pressed for him to pick one of the teams, to which he replied: “Well…if I have to pick, it’d be Geek Fam lah. Once a Geek, always a Fam, right?”
Geek Fam Rises Up
Despite the praise for Geek Fam, Berjaya Dragons were still the clear favorite for everyone. Thus far, Berjaya Dragons won every set throughout ESL Mobile Open, except for one set against UndeRank in group stages. They seemed invincible.
But hot on their dragon-y scaled tails, was Geek Fam. Ever since playoffs, they hadn’t lost a single set either, making their way past team after team. And UndeRank, to the surprise of many, was no different.
Geek Fam had a clean sweep of 3-0 against UndeRank. Despite that, UndeRank didn’t make it easy for Geek Fam. The three matches still took an hour and a half to conclude, with each match having some clutch moments where UndeRank could have made a comeback.
Nonetheless, Geek Fam made it to the grand finals against Berjaya Dragons. After a one-hour interlude, where Geek Fam had some time to rest, it was onto the finals. The grand final was a best-of-7 format, and both teams were neck and neck against each other.
Although Geek Fam raced forward to match point with a 1-3 score, Berjaya Dragons managed to hold on by winning the next two games. This equalized the score to 3-3 and everything would be determined by the seventh and final match.
Results throughout ESL Mobile Open, Liquipedia
The Last Stand in ESLMO 2021 Fall
It was the final match of the set and the stakes were at it’s highest. Berjaya Dragons had been playing for 3 and a half hours at this point. In contrast, Geek Fam had been playing for close to 5 hours, as they had to go through the Lower Bracket Finals earlier in the day. Neither team made any drastic moves for the first 10 minutes of the game.
Geek Fam had a strong early game and amassed a solid gold lead. However, Berjaya Dragons closed the gap in a team fight where Winter’s Galio and Chilly’s Annie were able to lock down the battlefield and take down most of Geek Fam’s team members.
The game was equalized again, and the pace of the game died down. Both teams were prodding each other’s defenses, pressing for a weak spot that they could exploit. And it finally happened at the 20-minute mark.
Sagi’s Corki was recalling on top of an enemy ward and TheShang’s Gragas was able to pull off an assassination with a full combo. With the advantage of numbers, Geek Fam proceeded to secure both the Elder Dragon and the Baron.
And that spelled the beginning of the end. Geek Fam marched down the bottom lane in full force, mowing through turrets and enemy champions alike before cracking open Berjaya Dragons’ nexus for the win.
Glory Rightfully Earned
Geek Fam’s journey had been a tough one. They had placed sixth during group stages and were put into the lower bracket right from the start of playoffs. In other words, they had to win every single game they had in the series, all the way to the grand finals. And when they finally got there, they did the seemingly impossible feat of taking down Berjaya Dragons as well.
With that being said, Geek Fam is your champion for ESLMO 2021 Fall: Malaysia. They will be proceeding to the SEA Championship Group Stages later in September.
Meanwhile, not all is lost for Berjaya Dragons. As the runner-ups, they still have a shot at the title through the play-ins. Depending on their performance, they might be able to join Geek Fam to compete in the SEA Championship group stages as well.
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