Defending champion Blacklist International was not all too worried about the two stunning losses against Myanmar’s Falcon Esports in the group stage and tiebreaker matches in the M4 World Championship on Tuesday, Jan. 3.
The MPL Philippines Season 10 champion actually had the chance to clinch an outright upper bracket spot and avoid complications with a sweep of group stage but it struggled heavily against the Burmese champion which forged a tiebreaker between them along with Incendio Supremacy.
Even in the tiebreaker, Falcon, coached by Filipino Steve “Dale” Vitug, proved that it got the defending champion's number with another convincing win that secured them the top seed of Group A.
While it is uncharacteristic for Blacklist to struggle, more so losing to the same twice within a day span, head coach Kristoffer “Bon Chan” Ricaplaza is not pressing the panic button just yet as they still managed to accomplish what is needed to be done in the group stage.
“I don't really mind losing to falcon as long as we secure the upper bracket,” said Bon Chan in the post-game presser after they clinched the upper bracket spot with a tight 19-16 victory over Incendio in the final game of the tiebreaker.
Blacklist stars Jonmar “OhmyV33nus” Villaluna and Danerie “Wise” Del Rosario shared the same sentiments.
“Just like coach and Wise said, as long as we are in the upper bracket we are super good and I think the two losses will contribute a lot of experience moving towards the upper bracket,” said OhmyV33nus.
Blacklist also allayed any concerns after the two losses, noting that if there’s anything that the two losses indicates, it should be the quality of the teams participating right now in the M4 Worlds.
“Mas naging exciting ngayon di lang basta para sa Blacklist kundi sa lahat ng teams kasi wala kang pwedeng iunderestimate lahat kaya sumabay,” said V33nus.
“Wala nang team na (pushover) ngayon, lahat may palag na,” added Wise.
Earlier in the tournament, favorites Onic Esports from Indonesia and The Valley from USA also suffered stunning defeats.