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[UPDATED] VCT 2024 Masters Shanghai: All First Round Draws and Predictions

[UPDATED] VCT 2024 Masters Shanghai: All First Round Draws and Predictions

21 May
Foo Zen-Wen

VCT Masters Shanghai is just around the corner. With the conclusion of all 4 regional leagues’ Stage 1s, we now progress into the waiting room for the next VALORANT international. 12 teams await, for a shot at their glory, a moment to bask under the international stardom and potential pull off a run of their dreams.

Read More: [UPDATED] VCT Masters Shanghai 2024: All Qualified Teams

As a brief rundown, VCT Masters Shanghai is comprised of two sections: the Swiss Stage and Playoffs.

VCT Masters Shanghai: First Round Draw

The 1st seeds from each of the four respective leagues – EDG, 100 Thieves, Fnatic, and Paper Rex will not have to compete in the Swiss Stage.

  • G2 Esports vs T1 [23rd May | 10am CET]
  • FunPlus Phoenix vs FUT Esports [23rd May | 1pm CET]
  • Gen.G vs Leviatán [24th May | 10am CET]
  • Team Heretics vs Dragon Ranger Gaming [24th May | 1pm CET]

VCT Masters Shanghai: First Round Predictions

Team Heretics vs Dragon Ranger Esports

Team Heretics come into this matchup as heavy favorites. Not only were they in attendance at Masters Madrid, but they were also a step from winning VCT EMEA Kickoff earlier this year, establishing themselves as one of the best teams in EMEA.

Moreover, earlier today, they were on the cusp of winning EMEA Stage 1 as well, losing to Fnatic in an incredible series that saw Fnatic pull off the reverse sweep.

Dragon Ranger Gaming exude a power aura of a challenger, coming into VCT China not as an invitee, but a survivor of the culling. DRG not only won their own regional Kickoff tournament last year, within the span of two tournaments, they are now ranked third best in their region.

Despite that, China’s late start and general isolation from the rest of the VALORANT ecosystem until more recently means that they will always begin with a disadvantage.

FunPlus Phoenix vs FUT Esports

Most would expect FUT to be heavy favorites coming into this series. However, FunPlus Phoenix may be the secret dark horse of this tournament. Most remember their prior performance at Madrid. However, there is merit to the idea that the FPX we will receive at Shanghai will be an extremely different beast to the one faced prior.

In China’s Stage 1, FPX was the only team to defeat EDward Gaming – the team widely considered internationally to be China’s best and most accomplished at this time. Not once, but twice. While they may have lost in the Grand Finals to EDG finally, their record still stands 2-1.

That said, FUT come into this tournament in the sharpest form we have seen them to date. With two new additions to their roster since last year, FUT was one of EMEA’s best in Stage 1, and pushed Fnatic hard in the lower finals before falling out.

We predict this series to be an incredibly close one, slightly favoring FUT for the international experience, but FPX for the unexpected elements.

G2 vs T1

Another tough one to call. G2 Esports come into VCT Masters Madrid in slightly questionable form. After barely closing out against Leviatán last night in one of the sloppiest games thus far in Stage 1, G2 find themselves rear-ended by 100 Thieves in the Grand Finals, not managing to take a single map.

However, over the course of Stage 1, their fundamentals and talent was undeniable, providing some leeway that perhaps there is hope for this roster.

T1 is coming into this international event in the sharpest form we have seen this organization in thus far in this game. Having beaten Gen.G – the Madrid runners-up – to qualify, there is an argument to be made that T1 could make a strong run.

However, based on their lower finals rematch against Gen.G, it does suggest that the roster still lacks experience. Therefore, G2 is favored to win this series.

Gen.G vs Leviatán

Undeniably the series to watch from Round 1 of the Swiss Stage, we have the clash between the runners-up of Madrid versus the acclaimed super-team of Latin America. T3xture vs aspas. Munchkin vs kiNgg.

Leviatán’s form in the Lower Finals was undoubtedly questionable, same as G2’s. however, similar to G2, we have seen such highs from them, that some erroneous lows can be written off post-qualification.

Gen.G, meanwhile, do not come into Shanghai with that same aura of domination that they had in Madrid. However, they are still the same 5 and they were a map off beating Paper Rex in the finals.

In terms of form moreover, of the 8, the peak of these two is likely to be the highest, meaning that if they both come into Shanghai with their best selves, we are unlikely to be disappointed in the outcome either way. Gen.G is favored to take this series, but in close 2-1 fashion.

Credit: Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games

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