DRX defeats T1 in VCT 2023 Pacific League Lower Bracket Finals

11:28 AM May 28, 2023

DRX has successfully defeated fellow South Korean team T1 3-2 at the VALORANT Champions Tour (VCT) 2023: Pacific League Lower Bracket Finals.

Prior to their lower final bout, DRX waited in the upper bracket semifinals as the top seed and managed to overcome Team Secret first in the playoffs. They then met Paper Rex in the upper final wherein they got utterly swept, 2-0, and got themselves sent to the lower bracket.


Just like them, T1 also shared the same fate of getting sent to the lower bracket by Paper Rex, falling in the same fashion of being swept 2-0. During their playoff journey, they also had to beat the third South Korean team Gen.G twice, outbattling them in the first round of the playoffs and then finally sweeping them in their fated lower bracket rematch. T1 was also responsible for eliminating ZETA DIVISION from the tournament after they were cast by Paper Rex down to the first round of the lower bracket.


DRX and T1 also share a lot of history together, with some players from both teams being teammates once upon a time. DRX’s Yu “BuZz” Byung-chul and T1’s Byeon “Munchkin” Sang-beom and Son “xeta” Seon-ho were all part of the Cloud9 Korea roster before the organization decided to move back to North America, with the roster claiming a fourth-place finish at First Strike: Korea. Speaking of the aforementioned tournament, the champions of First Strike: Korea was none other than Vision Strikers, also known as DRX today.

Substantial Leads, Insane Comebacks

The first half of the best-of-5 series can be summarized as games with substantial leads and insane comebacks, all ending in 13-11 scorelines.

The first game on Ascent, DRX’s map choice, marked the return of Kim “Zest” Ki-seok (김기석). Despite his last performance woes against Team Secret, Zest performed well in the first half, saving his team from harm multiple times and helping his team secure the cursed 9-3 lead. Unfortunately, his efforts weren’t enough as T1 overturned the game and ended it 13-11, marking the first of three 13-11 games in the series.

In Game 2 at Fracture, it was T1’s time to shine in the early game as they had the 8-4 lead coming into the second half. The trio of Joseph “ban” Seungmin Oh, Munchkin, and Ha “Sayaplayer” Jung-woo all posted double-digit kills, combining for thirty-six frags shared between the three of them. However, opposite to the first game, T1 lost to a DRX comeback that ended 13-11.

Game 3 on Haven may have had a different plot but it still ended with the golden score of 13-11. DRX’s winning momentum from the previous game was carried on, with the tournament favorites up 9-3 by halftime. Fortunately, unlike their first-game blunder, DRX held it out and managed to shrug off T1’s second-half attacks to be up 2-1 in the series.

On the verge of losing, T1 extended the series by winning the fourth game on Bind 13-6. T1’s defending first half was successfully led by Sayaplayer’s Raze and former Overwatch star Lee “Carpe” Jae-hyeok’s Gekko, with both players combining for twenty-seven kills prior to halftime. Up 8-4, T1 simply won the five rounds they needed in just seven rounds of action in the second half.

With the series tied, it was DRX who rose up and claimed the lower bracket ticket to the grand final. DRX was up 8-4 by halftime and proceeded to take their time to figure out how to best counter T1’s second-half attacks, eventually ending in a 13-9 finish at Pearl.


With their win, DRX booked a chance to get back on Paper Rex at the grand final stage of VCT 2023: Pacific League. The first trophy winner of the VCT Pacific League will be determined after a best-of-5 series. Regardless of the results, DRX, T1, and Paper Rex will all represent the Asia-Pacific region in the upcoming Masters Tokyo.

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TAGS: DRX, T1, VCT, VCT Pacific League
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