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G2 Esports vs Rogue preview: Kantoraketti and cryn take on former coach Shas

It’s a classic EU versus EU battle in the second quarter-final of the Berlin Major.

Rogue come off the back of a new roster, with wunderkind William "Spoit" Löfstedt snapped up just as he turned 18 years-old before the start of Stage 2. Alongside fellow international debutant Tom "Deapek" Pieksma, Spoit and the new-look Rogue could get Leon "LeonGids" Giddens and Matthew "meepeY" Sharples their fourth Major semi-final in as many Majors.

G2 Esports, meanwhile, overcame a horror start to the stage after only getting one win from their first five games. Thomas "Shas" Lee is out on his way after this weekend and this will be his last chance to win a trophy with G2, but he and his team will face his former players -- Pascal "cryn" Alouane and Juhani "Kantoraketti" Toivonen -- in their first playoffs match.

G2 Esports -- Alem4o, Virtue, Doki, CTZN, Prano, and Shas (coach)
Rogue -- LeonGids, Cryn, Spoit, Kanto, Deapek, meepeY (coach), Bernie (coach), and Saethus (analyst)

Who's the favourite?

This is likely the closest quarter-final simply because we have seen two wildly different versions of G2.

While Rogue have been a solid A-tier roster, not world-beaters but always a danger to anyone who play them, G2 have swung from some of the worst Siege ever to a 7-0 FaZe demolition in the space of three weeks.

If we (possibly unfairly) assume that the win against FaZe Clan was a fluke, where FaZe were not playing at 100%, G2 won in regulation and overtime against SANDBOX and Soniqs. Considering the performance of SBXG's closest rivals, DWG KIA, and that Soniqs has a history of weak Six Major runs, it is possible G2 were just in a fairly easy group.

This obviously takes a lot of agency away from G2, as they have been playing well. Not only that, they'll likely be the favourites in front of a very friendly crowd as they hope to continue their fairytale run as the home team at the Berlin Major.

Maps

Looking at their map pools, these two teams have a very similar lineup of maps which should mean that there will be no surprises sprung here.

 When looking at their prior head-to-heads over the last year, both teams have won on Bank, while G2 also won on Coastline last year. Coastline is no longer in the competitive map pool, however.

The most recent result on Bank was the second-worst defeat in G2's history. At this event G2, went to Bank again and lost 3-7 to FaZe, while Rogue lost to NiP but smashed DWG KIA here.

The ban phase will likely go in Rogue’s favour, though, as they played five out of the nine available maps in the group stage, while G2 only played three -- including that 3-7 loss on Bank to FaZe.

Rogue

For Rogue, a lot of the attention has been on Spoit, as he reached his first event in his debut stage.

While he excelled on Monday, it was Kantoraketti who dominated on the second and third days in terms of pure firepower, while it has been Cryn excelling on the offensive entry.

Cryn's main job on the attack this event has been to basically do his own thing on operators such as Nokk to crack open defenses. This wasn't a role he was too used to from his regional play, but is one he has excelled at here. 

Nevertheless, Spoit not being such a force has hurt their overall figures, as their attack win rate has plummeted from 63.9 per cent through the rest of the Season to 52.8 per cent in Berlin.

This change has taken the weight off of Spoit who has instead made the most impact on the defence. As a result, Rogue’s defensive win rate has climbed from 44.2 per cent to 57.6 per cent.

Spoit has been the team's standout player on the defence, which he definitely wasn't online. But none of his teammates have a positive kill differential, so this may not be quite enough to hold back G2.

G2 Esports

While G2's 7-0 win over FaZe has inflated their overall statistics, CTZN has been the event's standout player so far.

One player that's not quite lived up to his billing, however, has been his British partner in the squad, Doki. 

The team's primary entry player has differentials of minus seven on defence and minus one on the attack. As such, Doki has the third-worst entry record of the tournament, which is by far the worst of all the playoff-qualified players.

This isn't too unusual, however, as Doki had the fourth-lowest entry record at the Charlotte Major as well. Meanwhile, Virtue has been the team's second-best player at both event and has reasserted his strength on a stacked G2 roster.

(Photo: Ubisoft/Michal Konkol)

Who will win?

This is likely going to be the closest match of the quarter-finals.

G2 topped their group, but Rogue looked much better in Europe. Doki is somewhat struggling to get his usual numbers, but so is Spoit. Considering they also have similar map pools, and that G2 has undeniably improved from their last head to head, it's hard to call.

Assuming both team's fraggers turn up, they also both have excellent support players and staff. They are two of the best rounded teams we've seen in Europe for years and both will probably feel hard done by an exit in the quarter-finals. 

For Kanto and Cryn, eliminating their former team may also be an extra bit of motivation to make a statement in front of the G2 HQ. But they will be up against the mastermind of G2’s old title wins, Shas, who will not be holding anything back either.

Who will win? It’ll probably be whoever turns up.