Benjamin Hodge Mckenna

Benjamin Hodge Mckenna

Ben is a student on the UK’s first esports degree at Staffordshire University. Alongside writing, Ben is a CS:GO caster under the pseudonym ‘Protalis’. He has worked with the National University Esports League to provide coverage for their CS:GO division. Twitter @Protalis22

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CSGO: Astralis glide past Avangar to secure the Berlin Major

Astralis Wins StarLadder Berlin Major
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Astralis have won their 4th Major title following their victory against AVANGAR in the finals of the Berlin Major.


The all-star Danish line-up Astralis have broken records in CS:GO. Not only are they the first team in history to win four Major titles, but they are also the only team to ever defend 3 back-to-back Major Championships and they hold a 19-0 win streak in Major Playoff maps. The Danes accomplished this feat in the Grand Finals of StarLadder’s Berlin Major yesterday, where they faced off against the unlikeliest of Major finalists, AVANGAR.

The best-of-three series had an interesting map veto component. Astralis picked Inferno, a map that had been a staple of their map pool during their era of unchallenged success, but was also a relatively comfortable map for the Kazakhstani side. AVANGARthen chose Dust 2, a map they’d seen huge success on so far at the Major and one that Astralis tended to stay away from. Overpass would end up being the decider, and, all in all, it looked like the Danes were the favorites heading into the server. The analysts pointed out that this veto wasn’t terrible for AVANGAR, however, and that they may have a chance in the series.

Map 1: Inferno

Inferno would be the opening battleground, and it proved a comfortable ground for Astralis. The map began incredibly well for the defending champions, as a T-side masterclass allowed them to open up with 8 rounds won before AVANGAReven arrived on the scoreboard. The latter parts of the half looked much more competitive, but Astralis remained in the driver’s seat, earning themselves an impressive 12-3 opener on the T-side of Inferno.

After the half time switch, AVANGARlooked like they were back in the game. They claimed victory in the pistol round plus managed to convert the subsequent two, and all of a sudden things looked up for the Khasakstani roster. However, the Danes soon regained control on their CT-side and put the opening map to bed 16-6. Both primary AWPers were the talking points post-match, but for different reasons. Dzhami “Jame” Ali had a disastrous first-half performance on Inferno, whereas his counterpart Nicolai “device” Reedtz continued to show off his outstanding form during this Major.

Map 2: Dust 2

Dust 2 would be up next, and AVANGAR would need it to take it in order to stay in the series. This time Astralis started on the CT-side. The Danes' got off to another strong start, and Reedtz would continue his level of performance with a quad kill in the opening pistol. Soon enough, Astralis would be 7-1 up in the first half and AVANGARwould need to reply to stay in the game. Once again, the latter parts of the first half would be more competitive, but Astralis would still dominate their CT-side 11-4.

In a similar fashion to Inferno, AVANGARwon the second pistol and gained a glimmer of hope. Nonetheless, the Danes remained strong and emerged victorious from a dominant long push in their forcebuy round. After that, nothing could stand between Astalis and another Major title; Astralis claimed Dust 2 16-5 and became CS:GO Major champions yet again.

The MVP

Nicolai “device” Reedtz was a huge component in Astralis’ success at the Major, and he took home the MVP trophy to prove it. His outstanding level of skill with the AWP throughout the tournament elevated his teams play and allowed them to succeed. His performance in the final continued to be commendable, with an insane 117 ADR and a 1.97 HLTV rating to shut AVANGAR out of Dust 2. As a result, Reedtz was crowned the MVP of the Berlin Major


Image VIA: Astralis

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