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AS IT HAPPENED: How All APAC Teams Got Eliminated From VALORANT Champions 2022

09:43 PM September 08, 2022

Asia Pacific (APAC) VALORANT has come so far from once being considered a minor region to a major powerhouse, home to championship-caliber contenders, coming into the VALORANT Champions 2022. From Team Secret and XERXIA’s impressive playoff runs at the first ever Champions to Paper Rex’s first-runnerup finish at this year’s last Masters, APAC has stepped up into the world’s biggest stage and performed mightily against everyone else time and time again.

Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end, and, for us APAC fans, it was with great sorrow to watch as each one of our APAC representatives fall out of this year’s Champions. With that said, this is how all of our APAC teams got eliminated from the biggest VALORANT tournament of the year.

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Everyone Fell Into The Lower Brackets

All three of our APAC representatives, BOOM Esports, XERXIA, and Paper Rex, headed into Champions with high enough spirits and equally high expectations. After all, Paper Rex managed to reach the grand finals at Masters Copenhagen 2022 where they narrowly lost 2-3 to FunPlus Phoenix. Furthermore, XERXIA already had a Champions appearance under their belt, with a playoffs appearance no less, while BOOM was fresh from a VALORANT Champions Tour Asia-Pacific: Last Chance Qualifier win that saw them beat the likes of BLEED, a team with EMEA imports in both their roster and coaching staff, and their Indonesian rivals ONIC G.

Everyone thought the APAC teams would be able to reach the playoffs, especially with Paper Rex and XERXIA’s prior collective experience, while BOOM considered a dark horse as it was their first-ever appearance at an international LAN event for VALORANT. Alas, faith had other plans for them as every single one of them fell down to the lower bracket and subsequently got knocked out from Champions.

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It initially did start well as Paper Rex beat China’s EDward Gaming 2-1 at Group A’s opener on the first day of Champions. However, that would turn out to be the last and only win by any APAC representatives in the tournament.

BOOM’s debut may have had an explosive start as they beat North America’s OpTic Gaming at Breeze for their first game but were ultimately defeated 1-2 at the end. Then, Paper Rex fell short of the first playoff spot when they followed BOOM’s loss on the same day after being swept by Leviatán. After that, XERXIA’s first match against XSET also ended in a tough loss as they got swept 2-0.

With all of them in the lower brackets, none of them were able to get past their next matchups, with Paper Rex’s close 1-2 loss against Team Liquid at Group A’s Decider Match the final nail in the coffin.

APAC’s Style Got Figured Out

APAC’s collective defeat at Champions 2022 boils down to one reason: teams figured out their respective playstyles and adapted counters accordingly.

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It’s not to say our APAC teams had only a few tricks in their bag. In fact, if you’ve paid close attention to Paper Rex’s games all throughout Champions 2022, you’d see they’ve used peculiar strategies and setups, even the ones we see on TikTok. Furthermore, BOOM had the chance to catch other teams off-guard as it was their first appearance at a major tournament outside of APAC.

Despite their respective brilliance, their opponents simply cracked the code behind their flare, which is something that is to be expected from their opponents as Champions only featured the best-of-the-best from each region.

Paper Rex and XERXIA’s previous LAN appearances were a double-edged sword as their weaknesses were discovered and used against them.

Moreover, Paper Rex’s first matchup against EDward Gaming immediately exposed the Singaporean team’s strategies at Pearl – the newest map added to the map pool.

Meanwhile, BOOM’s debut at Champions against OpTic bared the team’s weakness at Fracture which eventually led to a similar landslide loss against ZETA DIVISION.

XERXIA, on the other hand, did not have the same firepower as their first Champions appearance as their superstar duelist Patiphan “Patiphan” Chaiwong left the team to come back to Overwatch while his replacement, Thanachart “Surf” Rungapajaratkul, just wasn’t at the same level.

APAC’s Battle Continues 

Despite the less than stellar result at this year’s Champions, BOOM, XERXIA, and Paper Rex still remain as one of the best teams in the world at VALORANT. After all, their respective performances merit a round of applause and admiration from everyone. Besides, they’ve already shown the world what the APAC region is capable of, and it’s only a matter of time when it’s finally APAC’s turn to sit at the top.

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TAGS: BOOM Esports, Champions 2022, Paper Rex, VALORANT Champions 2022, XERXIA Esports
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