IEM Katowice 2017 Semifinals
ROX Tigers vs G2 Esports
The first game of the series between these two was a lengthy one, and though ROX Tigers took control early with a few initial kills G2 Esports still managed to hold them at bay. ROX Tigers held a small gold lead over G2 for the majority of the match, but it wasn't until the later part of the match that things turned around. G2 never really gathered the momentum needed to even up the difference, and so a final Baron/Drake combo from ROX saw the end of game one around the 50-minute mark. Roles swapped for the second game, however, where G2 Esports took the early lead, forcing ROX to counteract the strong side. Here, however, G2 managed to build on that lead quite significantly, eventually making them practically unstopping them and giving them free access to the Nexus. It was ROX that controlled the largest portion of the deciding match, with the team managing to build up a gold advantage of over 10k by the 30-minute mark thanks to smart objectives and great farming. It looked like a strong victory for ROX as they began banging on the door of G2's base. But G2 wasn't about to roll over so easily. After ROX heads down to pick up Infernal Drake, G2 make a ballsy decision to grab Baron. It turns out to be a decisive move, resulting in an advantageous team fight for G2 as well as earning the buff. This is the turning point of the match, giving G2 the opportunity to decrease that lead before, beginning its own sieges, winning a final team fight to send them to the grand final.
— Intel®ExtremeMasters (@IEM) February 26, 2017
Flash Wolves vs H2K Gaming
It was in the second semi final of the tournament that Flash Wolves - who had seen little challenge in the games prior - met its match in H2K Gaming. In a drawn out battle from the start, H2K took an early lead in the first game that it just could not utilise to defeat Flash Wolves defence. The result was a game - over an hour in playtime - that saw Flash Wolves spend much of it defending its Nexus. The game did finally roll over to H2K, who used that confidence in the second game. In the second game H2K managed to leverage a handful of early kills to its advantage, giving it the strength to push on through objectives. There was no clear winner, but it certainly seemed like H2K was set to win the game. Flash Wolves did not let this happen, however, and scored itself a decisive Ace as H2K looked to siege, instead twisting the game on its head and the Taiwanese side going on to barrel on through to H2K's base. That left the decider, and if H2K had looked the winner then it was here where Flash Wolves took control. Early kills and more successful objective control ultimately gave FW the command of the game, pushing on for three Inhibitors and - naturally - the Nexus shortly after.
IEM Katowice Grand Finals
G2 Esports vs Flash Wolves
With the tension of the two semi-finals already over, the finals themselves weren't all that much to tune in for - comparatively. Having had to fight its way out of the Losers Bracket, G2 Esports found itself dominating the opening portion of the final thanks to First Blood. But despite this early start, Flash Wolves quickly found its feet and became impossible for G2 to counteract. The first game finished at just over thirty minutes, with G2 having done very little since its initial two kills. The game ended with Flash Wolves on 12 kills to G2's 2. The second game followed almost exactly the same pattern, once again G2 opening up with First Blood and First Turret and once again failing to capitalise on its initial lead. By the halfway mark Flash Wolves already had control of the game and within 25 minutes they were barking at the Nexus, forcing G2 to cower in the fountain as they tore the base apart ending the match with 12-4 in kills.
It was an easy sweep for Flash Wolves as they claimed the first place victory at IEM Katowice and the largest chunk of the prize pool.