The 25th and 26th of July saw the NUEL Super Team competing in the ESL UK Premiership qualifiers. Comprised of players from various teams competing in NUEL it was always going to be an uphill climb, but have no fear! For the NUEL squad comprised of Trashclub Billy, mc hal, Dynasty, iuKeEe and BearsArePeople2 fought hard and secured their place in the ESL UK Premiership. Here’s a rundown of the events that unfolded on that hallowed weekend.
First Qualifier: inMotion.White vs NUEL Watch here
This was to be the first big test for NUEL’s stars as inMotion.White had recently placed 3rd at Epic LAN. It was described as an “explosive” matchup between two teams, highlighting the coordination of White being pitted against the individual brilliance of NUEL.
As the match got underway it was the individual lane brilliance that shone through, Dynasty’s Irelia picking up an incredibly quick kill on Kog’Maw in the middle lane. Though inMotion.White picked up a dragon, a failed three versus two gank in the midlane resulted in another kill for Dynasty with the support of hal. Meanwhile iuKeEe and BearsArePeople2 stood united in the bottom lane, Billy using his ultimate and a flash-taunt to great effect securing a kill for NUEL. With middle lane dominance secured by another solo kill, Dynasty decided to spread the love as two more kills fell to NUEL.
With inMotion.White in disarray and the game snowballing heavily in NUEL’s favour it was only a matter of time. Having accumulated an 11k gold lead by twenty minutes, they were knocking on the door of the inMotion base. Courtesy of a Baron buff, they were able to welcome themselves in and take two inhibitors with them. At thirty minutes, they came back for seconds, cleaning up inMotion.White in quick time, BearsArePeople2 on Alistar deciding he wanted more than just a china shop. Despite the sixty per cent fan vote in favour of inMotion.White, NUEL put it to shame, securing their place in the next round of qualifying in a one-sided affair. The old saying “there is no I in team” may be true, but there are five in “individual brilliance”, and it was five individually brilliant performances which brought home victory.
Second Qualifier: PariaG vs NUEL (Best of Three)
1st game: Watch here
NUEL were up against PariaG in the final round of qualifying, two wins away from making it into the competition proper. Yet this would be no easy task, PariaG having finished their last game in eighteen minutes. With both teams in good form this looked to be one for the fans as the first game got underway.
While NUEL started strongly, with two kills for one secured in the bottom lane along with a useful dragon, but a failed dive on iPugx’s Kalista negated the early advantages secured. A teamight in the middle lane later courtesy of a tempered fate from Ewok’s Bard saw PariaG gain some control with the game 5-7 and a comfortable dragon.
PariaG immediately grouped up in the middle lane, a Gragas barrel securing the death of Dynasty’s Orianna and a turret.With Qtbaconpiggy putting down some poke-punishment with Jayce at dragon, the NUEL carries were brought low and the teamfight afterwards was one sided. One more fight around Baron and the game was pretty much done and dusted. The first game went to PariaG.
2nd game: Watch here
The second game saw a much closer contest between the two sides, NUEL seemingly with a point to prove. With Ahri seemingly permanently banned against Dynasty due to his impressive 4.92 kda, he fell back on his Irelia which had dominated in the previous round. With Irelia in the midlane, NUEL’s super team settled on a nice teamfight composition, Trashclub Billy placed on a more damage-based champion than Shen, bringing out the Rumble to go up against the Hecarim .of Flash. Meanwhile PariaG sported a teamfight composition of their own, an Annie, Viktor and Hecarim ultimate combination looking particularly damaging with Nidalee and Corki’s poke securing some siege potential.
Again, NUEL got off to a good start as a gank from hal secured an early kill for Dynasty. Later, what seemed like a catch onto Irelia for PariaG turned into a two for two in the middle lane as both teams used their teleports to try and secure an advantage meaning NUEL maintained their 1k gold lead, soon extended by neat ganks by hal’s Jarvan in the middle and bottom lanes. The snowball was starting to roll. At sixteen minutes, another gank and kill in the middle lane signalled the dominance that NUEL would later show as Qtbagonpiggy’s Viktor went down for the fifth time.
PariaG could see the game slipping away from them and decided to focus warding in the areas around the dragon pit. However, despite the extremely heavy investment, all they picked up was a blue buff as a Hecarim homeguard-teleport was wasted. As PariaG attempted to retreat, a fiery Equaliser from Billy and a Dredge Line from BearsArePeople2 secured another kill onto the out of position Viktor as well as dragon. A quick rotation to middle lane resulted in a tower for NUEL as the lead extended to 2k.
An uncontested dragon later, NUEL grouped and set up vision in the PariaG jungle. The difference between the two teams was very much focused on the midlaners, there being a sixty creep and four kill discrepancy between the two. However, iuKeEe had managed to secure his own twenty creep lead over PariaG’s Corki. The combination of their lead and vision control allowed NUEL’s players to dictate the play, PariaG hesitant to go move outside their turret ranges. Cautious gameplay until the next dragon ensured little action. Yet despite NUEL’s advantage, a messy dragon fight would get heartbeats racing. While Kalista secured the dragon with a rend, a teleport from Flash on Hecarim sowed chaos in the NUEL ranks. iuKeEe was deleted due to the high burst damage of Viktor and Annie, but Jarvan secured a kill on Nidalee outside the pit. Dynasty put down heavy damage on Viktor while securing a kill on Corki in response but was focused down by the rest of PariaG. Billy finished the job with his harpoons, but an incredibly healthy Hecarim proceeded to tank up three members with the help of Annie. Nautilus was quickly crushed under his hooves while hal made a hasty retreat, surviving on a hundred health, despite the attentions of Flash. A messy fight, but a slight advantage gained in NUEL’s fourth dragon.
With Flash’s Hecarim starting to run riot things were starting to become more complicated for NUEL, but with Corki’s damage starting to fall off and iuKeEe on Kalista a level and forty creeps ahead, NUEL could still be seen as the favourites in fights. With the super team looking to engage, Viktor is caught out on his own by a dredge line from BearsArePeople2 starting the fight. With Qtbaconpiggy flashing out, the PariaG team engage with Flash’s Hecarim onto iuKeEe. However, with the rest of the team zoned out by the sizeable NUEL frontline and a fantastic cataclysm from hal, Hecarim is left to die a death more tragic than perhaps Shakespeare could have written. With PariaG’s tank and major damage threat feeding the worms, hal flash engaged onto PariaG and an extended fight led to the deaths of Nidalee and Annie in exchange for Nautilus. The remains of the PariaG lineup limped back more battered than a piece of cod in a chippie. Having secured a turret, NUEL turned their attention to fifth dragon. A desperate homeguard-teleport from Flash is all that PariaG can use to contest it, but the Shadow of War arrived too late and was banished back to the purgatory that is the respawn timer.
The gold lead by this time had extended to 5.5k and, with Aspect of the Dragon, NUEL formed up around Baron Nashor, confident in the knowledge that they could fight PariaG head on. With PariaG forced to facecheck to keep any hope of salvaging the game, the engage from NUEL using Righteous Glory sealed their fate, a beautiful Equaliser from Billy toasting multiple members in the jungle. The surrender vote came in and NUEL emerged victorious.
3rd game: Watch here
Having finished the last game strongly, NUEL’s super team started where they left off, the first kill clocking in before the five minute mark courtesy of a Rek’Sai gank from hal. A strong start seemed to be a trend in these games and NUEL didn’t look like letting up as a return gank from hal secured the kills on Vayne and Thresh, all the while Billy on Rumble fighting off a one versus two. Everything seemed to be going in NUEL’s favour. First dragon secured, NUEL was sitting pretty.
With NUEL in control and looking to snowball, the momentum was with them. A support gank by Ewok on Thresh in the top lane was an attempt to help slow NUEL down, but Billy avoided the attentions of the Chain Warden and Shen with a beautiful Equaliser to slow them down. With the help of his mid laner and jungler, they turned it around picking up two kills and a turret. While BearsArePeople2 and iuKeEe went down two for one in the bottom lane, things were still looking good for the super team.
From here, it all went downhill for PariaG as roams from Dynasty and Billy secured kills and objectives for NUEL.Winning a teamfight in the middle lane four for one would seal the fate of PariaG as they could never quite get a foothold in the game again. A surrender vote came in at twenty-seven minutes with the score coincidentally at 20-7, NUEL having dominated after their strong start ending the game with a 13.9k gold lead. The NUEL Super Team marched onwards into the ESL UK Premiership.
Along with NUEL, the Terra Cotta Army made it into the main stages of the tournament with PariaG and exceL Esports making it through the losers’ bracket. It looks set to be a tough competition with teams such as Team Infused, the winner of the spring competition, and Choke Gaming, winners of Riot’s 4 Nations 2014 and runners-up in spring, rounding out an already daunting lineup. However, looking at their performances in qualifying, NUEL’s finest will certainly be giving the more established teams a run for their money.