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EMEA Strive Cup Week 1: United Kingdom and France Lead the Way

Femi Famutimi
6 min

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EMEA Strive Cup Week 1: United Kingdom and France Lead the Way
In what promises to be one of the hypest Strive tournaments of the year, GGST pros from all over the EMEA region are showing what they are made of

So, the EMEA Strive cup has begun! The month-long tournament released its schedule a while ago, and the tournament started on the 30th of January 2022. The event will run till the 27th of February and features four groups. The format is similar to a football tournament like the World Cup or the Euros. Two teams qualify from each group, and they fight it out till the very end, where one winner will take all the plaudits.

In terms of individual matches, each team battle is a best of five wrapped up in a best of three format. What this means in practical terms is that team A and team B each have five members, of which only three can participate in the match (although substitutions are allowed after each set). Team A's representative will take on Team B's representative, and they'll play a best of three set. If Team A wins, that's a point to them, and then they play again with different representatives. If Team A wins the second set, that's another point for them, and it ends that particular run. If Team B wins, there's a final set to see who wins. This whole thing is done a second time again and if Team A comes up victorious once more, that ends the game. If Team B wins, then there's a third slew of sets to determine the winner of the match. 

Each week, there are four match days, with two games played every match day. These matches are shared across four channels, namely:

Matchdays are Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays

Day 1

The festivities kicked off with one of the tournament favorites, France, facing off against a mesh of Switzerland and Austria. It soon became clear why France is considered a favorite as they dispatched of the Swiss and Austrians with relative ease. Of particular note was Skyll, whom many might know from his exploits in Soulcalibur. His Sol was an absolute menace, and he did a lot to help earn his team the victory. 

The second match of the day was a lot closer as Italy and Russia fought against each other. While the match ended in a 2-0 win for Italy, it was by no means an easy take as Russia really pushed them and could have taken a point themselves. However, it soon became apparent that Italy was the stronger side, and they claimed victory.

Strive Cup Day 1 action

Day 2

The second day started with Germany faced with the daunting task of defeating a combined force of Belgium and the Netherlands. The game eventually ended 2-1 in favor of Germany. The second match was a lot more straightforward as the combination (you'll see this a lot) of Israel and Turkey was too much for the Norway-Sweden to handle and they were beaten with some relative ease and the match ended 2-0. 

Strive Cup Day 2

Day 3

Easily the most exciting day of the tournament so far. Day three saw one of the tournament favorites, Saudi Arabia, taking on the United Arab Emirates. The Saudi team was stacked with current 'Wanted' champion Latif joined by other FGC heavyweights like Slash and SSF. UAE are no slouches themselves with the likes of Envy, Needless, and MZA in attendance. The first match was definitely the best showcase of Strive as UAE made life difficult for Saudi Arabia. The latter won 2-0, but with almost every set ending in a 3-2 result, it was clear that UAE gave Saudi Arabia a run for their money. Even Latif with his all-conquering Zato faced a mirror match against Needless which went down to the wire. Saudi's ability to still take the game though shows their quality and they are certainly one of the favorites for the tournament. 

The second match featured a novelty for many as a coalition of African teams including Egypt and Senegal got together to play against Finland. While Shady's Goldlewis was on display and was a joy to watch, the African coalition fared really well. This was despite an early setback as it was revealed that two members of the squad were unable to make the match leaving only Javichu, Verix, and Nekomaster as the team to face their opponents. The African coalition were victorious winning 2-0 in a result that cannot be considered an upset but might have surprised one or two who are unfamiliar with the strength of African players.  

Strive Cup Day 3

Day 4

Day 4 was a surprise. On the one hand, we saw a devastating beatdown as the United Kingdom; another favorite, absolutely obliterated Portugal to win 2-0. It was almost grisly to watch, and it cemented the UK as one of the overwhelming favorites to win. It simply showed the strength of the scene as they dispatched of their opponents, not letting the Portuguese win even a set and running away with the victory. On the other hand, the second match was surprising by how well Morocco acquainted itself with the tournament. Considering they were facing another of the tournament favorites, Spain, Morocco were certainly the underdogs. By the end of the match, a lot more people were definitely knowledgeable of the strength of Morocco

Morocco ultimately lost as Spain's experience and the Africans' nerves combined to present Spain with a 2-1 win. Notably, Uriel_Legion, a veteran of the FGC with his Potemkin were instrumental in winning the game for the Spanish. 

Stive Cup Day 4

Week 2 starts on Sunday and with the marker laid down, we are in for even more exciting games. With qualification now hanging in the balance, we are sure to see some breathtaking action. DashFight will be following all the action and we'll definitely keep you informed. 

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