G2 Esports crowned world champions at Rainbow Six Invitational 2023
21 February 2023
From February 7th to February 19th, it was time for the Rainbow Six Siege Invitational 2023, the official world championship for the popular shooter. Highly anticipated as always in the world of esports, the event was organized by the game’s developer Ubisoft and saw the twenty best teams of the world compete for the ultimate title. After their impressive victory four years ago, it was Berlin-based G2 Esports who proved to be the best in the world, beating Brazilian outfit W7M Esports in a spectacular grand finale. The Brazilians were favorites for the title, but a seemingly unchained G2 proved too much with the finish line in sight.
Underwhelming Group Stage
While the title deservedly went to G2, the team’s start to the Invitational was not immediately indicative of their later success. In Group A, in which their future final opponents W7M featured as well, the European organization, ended in second place behind KOI, the Spanish esports organization founded by Spanish caster Ibai Llanos and current FC Barcelona player Gerard Piqué. G2 did start out with a victory over the Spaniards on Day 1, but then fell 2-1 to W7M on Day 2. They could then rest for Day 3, which obviously did them good, seeing as they managed to beat American organization Elevate on Day 4. A victory over Spacestation on the fifth and final day of the Group Stage got them second place in the group, one point behind KOI and one in front of W7M Esports.
As a result, G2 entered the play-offs in the first round of the lower bracket structure. They started with a 2-1 victory over the Americans of FaZe, which sent the future champions on an impressive unbeaten run. DarkZero Esports in round 2, M80 in round 3, and Wolves Esports in the quarterfinals were all eliminated, as was Danish side Astralis in the lower bracket semi-finals. Via a 0-2 victory over New England-based Oxygen Esports, G2 made it into the grand finale of Rainbow Six’ most prestigious tournament, where former Group A contenders W7M Esports were waiting.
Slow start for the future champions
As usual, the grand finale was the only match of the Invitational that was played in a best-of-five format. G2 had a slow start to the encounter, going down 7-5 on Clubhouse, but it only proved to be a temporary lapse. What followed was a dominant run of three victories in a row, on Bank (2-7), Kafe Dostoyevsky (4-7) and Oregon (6-8) to bring G2 their first Invitational since their victory in 2019 in Montreal, Canada. Besides the glory and the title, the victory also brought the European organization $ 1.000.000 in prize money.
“I think the map ban phase was kind of expected”, explained Fabian Hällsten, G2’s coach, after the grand final, “We didn’t really care which one (of Clubhouse or Border) they picked. We had a 5-7 result and if their best map and our worst are that close, we knew that we had them in the next three”.