Bren Esports and Reality Rift emerged victorious in the first stage of the Valorant Challengers Series for Southeast Asia, winning the sub-regional events for the Philippines as well as Malaysia and Singapore on Sunday (7 February).
Bren Esports were considered heavy favorites for the Philippines’ first Valorant Challengers tournament after they dominated at Mineski VxV, the Valorant First Strike event for the Philippines, last December.
They did not disappoint as Bren didn’t drop a single game en route to becoming the champions of the Valorant Challengers Philippines Stage 1 and bagging the PH₱20,000 (over US$410) grand prize.
After breezing through the open qualifier, Bren Esports made short work of SE Atlas and Dream Fyre in the first two rounds of the main event advance to the grand finals.
Bren Esports faced Empire Esports in the grand finals and started the series strong with a 13-9 win at Ascent. The eventual champions showcased how far ahead they were of the competition in the next two games at Haven and Bind, taking both maps 13-8 to claim the championship with a clean 3-0 sweep.
Reality Rift in hard-fought win against Team SMG
Meanwhile, Singaporean team Reality Rift overcame some tough competition to become the champions of Valorant Challengers Malaysia and Singapore Stage 1.
Reality Rift cruised through the open qualifier and defeated Singaporean stack XIAO and Malaysian powerhouse Todak to face hometown rivals Team SMG in the upper bracket finals.
After Team SMG won the first game at Bind, Reality Rift took the next two maps at Icebox and Split to pull off the reverse sweep and secure their spot in the grand finals.
Team SMG then defeated another Singaporean powerhouse, Kingsmen, to force a rematch with Reality Rift in the grand finals. Reality Rift took a close game one at Haven, 13-10, before Team SMG dominated them at Ascent, 13-7, to tie up the series.
Reality Rift didn’t squander their earlier lead, however, as they bounced back with a huge win in Bind, 13-6, and took control at Split, 13-10, to become the champions of Valorant Challengers Singapore and Malaysia and take the SG$1,300 (over US$970) grand prize.
Other Southeast Asia regions
In the other Valorant Challengers events for Southeast Asia, X10 Esports became the first stage champions for Thailand, BOOM Esports emerged victorious in Indonesia, while Only One Word Hong got the win over at Kong and Taiwan.
All of the first stage champions will be directly seeded to Valorant Challengers Stage 2.
The Stage 1 champions for Malaysia and Singapore as well as Indonesia will also be joined by the second to fourth-placed teams in their respective events for Stage 2, while only the second to third-placed teams will advance for the Philippines, Thailand, as well as Hong Kong and Taiwan.
Valorant’s global esports circuit kicked off this year with the 2021 Valorant Champions Tour. The circuit is split into three series; Challengers, Masters, and Champions.
The first series, Challengers, will be regional competitions that will determine qualification into the next series, Masters, which will then determine qualification into the the highest level of competition among all three series, Champions.
There will be three Challengers and Masters series stages throughout the year. The first will be from February to March, the second from April to June, and the third from July to September. The Valorant Champions series will then crown the game’s first world champion in December.
For Southeast Asia, the Challengers series will have competitions for Malaysia and Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, as well as Hong Kong and Taiwan, with each event featuring eight teams fighting for a spot in the next stage of the Challengers series.
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