After 3 long months of action-packed matches and with their immense dedication to the game, Hammers Esports bring the Critical Ops Circuit Trophy home. Going down in history as the Circuit champs, the road to victory wasn’t easy. It had its shares of ups and downs. Having played fairly well in the matches preceding the grand finale, Hammers faced Team Xenocide in a nail-biting showdown, finishing off with a 13-8 lead in the fan-favorite classic map, Legacy.
Every member of the team stepped up when it mattered. Mere, the team captain, put on a top lane masterclass show along with Frost and Erupt. Hammers had been exceeding expectations in Circuit ever since the beginning, dominating the Circuit leaderboard with 38 points and a rating of 1”07, having then qualified for the final tournament.
“The path to victory wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows. Heading into Circuit we knew that we had to strengthen our weaknesses, one of them being the map Raid, we knew playing on it would be tough for us, but we went through and studied our rivals’ past in-game footage, with hard work it was made possible to ace that map, and we finished with a 13-10 lead over Team Xenocide on it.” quoted Nick, analyst, and manager for Hammers Esports Critical Ops, giving us a behind the scenes glimpse of the dedication they put in perfecting their game.
“We did undergo some roster changes in our Circuit journey but the biggest change was adding Trax to our roster in the later stages of the Circuit. We had Mere, Erupt, Frost, and Night as our core roster, due to some time conflicts the fifth spot was always in need of a dedicated player and that is exactly when Trax came into play, we knew he was the right fit for our team as he always showed up on time with his deliciously aggressive playstyle,” added Nick.
“I wanted that custom Circuit skin more than anyone else,” said Mere, the captain of the ship. “It was one of the main reasons that made me push myself to the max, and the work indeed paid off.”
Mere had taken the team’s life into his own hands with some of the best performances of his career.
An Intense Fifth Game for Hammers
The final fifth game on the map Legacy, turned out to be extremely intense as it was the final game that would happen to decide who turns out to take the trophy home. Hot and heavy would be the ideal words to describe this final match of the Grand Finals, with Xenocide starting off strong securing 4 rounds in a row.
The first half of the game went Xenocide’s way, setting the foundation for a CT-side comeback from Hammers.
The Men in Blue knew they had a mountain to climb to overcome the odds and find their footing in the game, to regain control on the CT Side.
However, they did start fairly well, securing the pistol round aggressively on the Coalition side after halftime, with not a single player on their team getting taken down.
Things were starting to turn out in their favor as Hammers played comparatively well on the Coalition side and the score tightened up after the two teams exchanged sides.
Hammers finally caught up with Xenocide’s pace and things did seem to balance out after they strung many rounds together to build up an economy and halt their opponents' momentum with Frost’s consistent contributions.
Hammers held their ground and it was evident that Xenocide weren’t able to crack their tight defense. In this power-packed final match of the best of five series, fatigue seemed to be taking over for both the teams.
Erupt turned out to be the hero of the second half as the audience was left spellbound after his magical ace, especially that Triple Nade kill in the 20th Round is what made this finale a popcorn worthy treat for the spectators.
Hammers were then just two rounds away from being crowned the champions. It was 12-8 for them and Xeno respectively, and Xeno tried their best to secure some rounds with a force buy, but to no avail.
Merezy finished it off with a double kill to win the match. And thus, Hammers cemented themselves as the best team in North America after this long, enduring best of five series.