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Overwatch League Recap: Guangzhou Charge vs LA Valiant

Interview with Eileen and Rio

Guangzhou 3 – LA Valiant 1

The Guangzhou Charge came into today’s match favored against the winless Los Angeles Valiant. Luckily, they lived up to expectations with a very strong performance across all four maps and took the series in a quick and dominant fashion.

Ilios: Guangzhou 2 – LA Valiant 0

Guangzhou Charge vs LA Valiant
Image courtesy of Overwatch

Starting out on the Well, Jung-woo “Happy” Lee managed to take the initial pick, and it let the Charge take the initial tick. They held the map until they had achieved 72%, and might have held longer if not for a failed Sound Barrier coming out of Jung-yeon “Chara” Kim. The LA Valiant kept possession until they had matched that percentage before Guangzhou finally took it back. The Charge maintained possession after, and with Hong-Jun “Hotba” Choi stopping a desperation Grav, the Charge took the map solidly after that.

Lighthouse had several back and forth fights and looked much closer overall. Standout plays from Hotba and Chara finally managed to give the Charge the edge over the Valiant overall. A well placed Grav from Happy prevented the Valiant from even touching and triggering overtime, ending the match there.

 

King’s Row: Guangzhou 5 – LA Valiant 4

On the defense, the Charge began by running a Sombra GOATS with Hotba on the sole damage hero. However, while it was lengthy, the Valiant took point A on their first push. Guangzhou proceeded to be spawn camped on B for a time, but managed to finally stabilize near the end of the second phase. Yet their respite was short-lived due to Indy “Space” Halpern, who got off a backcap on the point. The Charge were pushed back for the rest of C, and didn’t stabilize until a few meters from the goal. On the following Valiant push, the Charge were wiped out by a big teamfight victory and lost with 2:40 in the time bank.

On their offensive push, an early big pick onto Pan-seung “Fate” Koo swung the first fight in favor of Guangzhou, and they took point A with an even faster time. The following fights all went the way of the Charge, with Fate being taken out first in nearly every occasion. They burned through B and C, and threw nearly every ult they had into the Valiant’s spawn and prevented LA from leaving to contest the point. When the dust settled, the Charge had over a minute more in the time bank, and had even set a new record on completing the map this season.

On their second defense, the Charge lost the first point quickly after losing Happy and choosing not to recontest. They used this time to regroup and put up a strong hold near the beginning of B. Once again, they forced the Valiant off the point before overtime could even trigger.

With their second offensive round, the Charge didn’t succeed on their first push, but on the second they rolled the Valiant. It did take them several pushes, but in the end Guangzhou finally won off a team kill.

 

Horizon: Guangzhou 2 – LA Valiant 1

Guangzhou Charge vs LA Valiant
Image Courtesy of Blizzard Entertainment

On their defense, Rio generating Primal Rage quickly stalled out the Valiant’s attempts. The only casualty of first two pushes ended up being Jin-seo “Shu” Kim, but this did prove costly for the Charge. They finally lost point A after almost 3 minutes off of the advantage from Shu not being there. The Valiant came in strong but the Charge held point B through the first push. The following fight turned into an all-out battle on the point, where the Charge lost over two ticks before they could regroup from their losses. However, a crucial pick onto Fate by Shu finally stabilized the defense. The following fights went similarly, losing several players but managing to edge out holds on the defense. In the end they somehow kept off the Valiant and did not allow a second point to be capped.

On the offense they engaged in a standard outside push on A, and an early pick on Min-chul “Izayaki” Kim created an opening. It took two pushes, but Guangzhou managed to take A off of strong clean ups from Happy and Shu. They used the momentum to bolt onto point B and speedily demolished Fate. After whittling down the defenses, the Charge steadily took both the map and match.

 

Rialto: LA Valiant 3 – Guangzhou 2

On the initial defense, an extremely long fight occurred at the bridge, and no one from either team died for the first two minutes and 20 seconds of the match. After Happy become the first casualty, point A was finally taken by Los Angeles. The push on B was rough, and the Charge failed to win a teamfight on any of the second segment. On C they finally stabilized with 1:30 left in the bank and held an aggressive defense near the stairs on B. Guangzhou finally lost possession right before overtime began, and retreated inside the building at the end of C, where they held off the Valiant off of a big combo from Seung-pyo “Rio” Oh and Hotba.

On the offense, Happy, briefly on Widowmaker, took an early pick onto Izayaki. It was a slow push after that for the Charge, and a big bomb from Space nearly stopped their push on A. Somehow the Charge rallied, took A in overtime, and slowly but surely finished the push on B. The Valiant put up a much stronger defense on C however, and a noble backcap attempt from Hotba was thwarted in overtime, preventing the full 4-0 sweep.

 

Conclusion

The Charge are looking more and more like a legitimate playoff contender with every match. They are currently standing at 5th place in the rankings and have a very solid map differential. They also look poised to play strongly against another struggling Los Angeles team next week with the LA Gladiators. The Charge still need to work on payload awareness, but they’re improving with nearly every match they play.

 

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