The Capcom Pro Tour got off to an explosive start with the CPT Japan 1 taking place over the weekend (17th-18th April 2021) and it was the 2D god, Mago who came out on top with a masterful performance and win over fellow legend, Hajime 'Tokido' Taniguchi.
The tournament itself was full of hype moments and top-level action with several matches going to the final match, and even sometimes, the final round. Top-level Street Fighter competitions in Japan are always interesting. This region has a well-known tradition of mighty fighting games players, and seeing their matches is both an entertaining and educating experience. Do you actually need any other reason for watching this spectacle, the first tournament of Capcom Cup 2021?
Just take a look at the names of some participants. Yeah, they are absolute legends, and it was a great opportunity to see them in action: Daigo, Gachikun, Tokido, Momochi, sako, Itabashi Zangief, Machabo, Dogura, Fujimura, Nemo, Fuudo, Bonchan… And only one got to proceed to the upcoming Capcom Cup VIII.
What would you prefer - victory of one of these titans or surprising success of someone young and unknown? Japan will have three more Capcom Pro Tour events later, so we’ll be able to enjoy a lot of those tense fights, and the iconic players will still have a chance to make it through the qualifier.
Five finalists of CPT Japan 1 will get their chunk of the $5,000 prize pool.
The tournament will be streamed in two parts: Top 16 players fight for reaching Top 8, and Top 8 players fight for the ultimate victory.
Street Fighter 5 Esports - Capcom Pro Tour 2021, Japan 1 - Top 16
There seemed to be something of a theme in this tournament: old school v new school. There were some of the old veterans that we're all used to, but some of the newer players were also on display. The likes of Kawano and John Takeuchi were particularly impressive as they made it to the top 8 of the tournament before being eliminated by Momochi. The match could probably be encapsulated in the pre-match comments by both players. Kawano was bold, stating that he felt it was time for new blood, while it was clear Tokido was having none of that by responding "I'm not losing to a youngster".
Tokido won that match, and Momochi eventually knocked Kawano out, meaning that the old guard is far from done. But, with Kawano and John Takeuchi taking 4th and 5th place respectively, it seems the new kids on the block are not too far away.
Top match of the day
There were several amazing matches of the day including the losers final between Tokido and Momochi. Momochi's Ryu seems to be a real threat to other participants and it will be interesting to see how he fares in other competitions. But the craziest match of the day has to be the one between Itazan and Daigo. The latter was the favorite to win and quickly raced into a 2-game lead. It looked for a second that it would be a clean sweep until Itazan pulled it back. It was a ridiculous match and Itazan's choice of Zangief was a bit of a surprise seeing as how poor he can be against Guile. But Itazan was smart. He sacrificed some fireball damage to ensure he got into range to deal some serious damage with Gief's command grabs and spinning mixer. Itazan's comeback was improbable and was a joy to watch!
Treat yourself to this excellent SFV show! If you want even more Japanese Street Fighter, take a look at these tournaments:
Daigo and Gachikun had a match during the Capcom Pro Tour Season Final. Is it possible to witness a different outcome now?
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