The first leg of the North American qualifiers for Valorant First Strike has concluded, and Cloud9 Blue have emerged victorious after a nerve-wracking battle against Team Envy.

The NSG Open Qualifiers saw 128 Valorant teams across North America compete for a shot at First Strike, the first Valorant tournament to be officially organised by Riot Games.

The prior performances of C9 Blue and Envy against top teams like Gen.G and TSM made it evident that the grand finals would be a close call, but Cloud9 managed to emerge on top with back to back wins after losing the initial map, Ascent with a scoreline of 13-11.

However, in the following map Split, C9 bounced back, and they bounced back hard. Leaving no room for Envy to retaliate, C9 snatched one round after another till the start of the second half, when Envy started making a comeback. That too, was cut short by Tyson “TenZ” Ngo, who ended the game with a whopping 29 kills with Cloud9 winning the map 13-7.

The decisive third game on Bind was pretty much a one-sided domination from C9 Blue. The match ended 13-5, and Cloud9 were crowned as the winners of the NSG Open Qualifiers.

Both the teams will proceed to the Closed Qualifiers scheduled to start a few days later, but Cloud9 Blue will gain #1 seed moving there. The top four teams from the closed quals will directly proceed to First Strike, while the next four will get another shot in the UMG Qualifiers next month.


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