The wildcard stage of the WePlay AniMajor is now over, and that means that four teams are headed home from Kiev.
Team Secret, Invictus Gaming, Execration, and AS Monaco Gambit are all out. Team Nigma and Vici Gaming are the only wildcard teams to advance forward to the group stage. In the cases of Execration and AS Monaco Gambit, this turn of events isn’t particularly surprising.
Execration’s successful qualification for the WePlay AniMajor was a shock to begin with. The team climbed over regional favorite Fnatic, as well as OB Esports x Neon which had a surprisingly strong run in the ONE Esports Singapore Major. Execration still performed relatively well, amassing a 4-6 record.
AS Monaco Gambit’s journey at the #WePlayAniMajor has come to an end. We have gained invaluable experience playing with the strongest teams in the world. We are sure that there will be an opportunity to apply it in the future ✊🏻 pic.twitter.com/ECW2SjTZeb
— Gambit Esports (@GambitEsports) June 3, 2021
AS Monaco Gambit went 3-7 in the wildcard stage, but the fact it won any games at all is impressive, especially considering two of those wins came against Secret and Invictus Gaming. Shortly before the event, Gambit’s roster was picked through by Natus Vincere as two players departed just ahead of the major. Despite playing with two substitutes, Gambit exceeded expectations. Just not to the point where they could advance to the group stage.
While Gambit and Execration washing out in the wildcard stage isn’t a shock, it’s certainly a surprise to see Team Secret and Invictus Gaming settle into 16th and 15th-place finishes, respectively. Both teams had a claim to favorite status, but couldn’t make it out of the wildcard stage.
Secret finished with a 4-6 record, which was possibly inflated by a victory over Team Nigma that came after a server reset threw out a game where Nigma was in a probable position to win. That questionable victory set Secret against Invictus Gaming. If either team could score a 2-0 victory, it would put them into a tiebreaker with Nigma to advance to the group stage.
— Team Secret (@teamsecret) June 3, 2021
Invictus Gaming scored a 2-0 win over Secret to finish the stage with a 6-4 record, putting them into a tiebreaker with Team Nigma. Nigma came out on top of the best-of-one tiebreak to secure the spot in the group stage alongside Vici Gaming.
Despite both Secret and Invictus Gaming washing out of the major in short order, both teams are still positioned to head to The International 2021 due to their strong performances at the ONE Esports Singapore Major. The other eliminated teams aren’t quite so lucky. AS Monaco Gambit and Execration will both need to work their way in through regional qualifiers.