Over the weekend, 16 teams battled it out to be crowned the victors of the 2019 PUBG Global Championship (PGC).
Jamie Wootton flew out to Oakland to watch the action live. Here, he recaps all the action, including how the UK players got on.
The PGC Grand Finals in Oakland, California were the culmination of a year’s worth of effort in PUBG-supported leagues all around the world. Over $2m awaited the first place winner, with a total prize pool of $4m which had been raised by PUBG and the community.
Six games were played each day with the event’s scoring system awarding points based on two factors. One point was awarded for every kill a team managed to secure while other points were accumulated according to each team’s match placement.
Which UK PUBG talent was on show?
As highlighted in our PGC 2019 semi-final recap, there was UK representation throughout the tournament.
TSM, the prominent North-American organisation, have two British players on their roster (Rory ‘Rawryy’ Logue and Michael ‘MykLe’ Wake), alongside a Dane and a player from Turkey. Tempo Storm, on the other hand, have a British coach on their side: Ben ‘Microstar’ Kyle.
There were three British hosts on the broadcast too. James ‘Kaelaris’ Carrol was the event’s desk host and he was joined by Lauren ‘Pansy’ Scott and Richard ‘TheSimms’ Simms – two highly experienced PUBG casters.
Grand Finals Recap – Day One
Once the opening ceremony concluded and the teams were sat at their PCs, the PGC Grand Finals started with a bang. Despite being out-positioned by Genesis in the first match, South-Korean squad Gen.G went on a killing-spree and won the first two games of the day.
TSM placed disappointingly in the first two matches but this all changed during the third game of the day. TSM secured the chicken dinner and, in the process, got eight kill points. This brought their overall total to 19 points which saw them reach sixth place, a good but not great part of the leaderboard.
When the first day of PGC ended, we spoke to Michael ‘mykLe’ Wake, a player from TSM, and asked if the team had changed their game-plan after the disappointing start. He replied:
“I think we played the same. We got into a good position and, instead of just hiding inside the compound, we took advantage of all the space we had.”mykLe, TSM
In the fourth match of the day, Entus Progaming Ace took the chicken dinner and 11 kill points. The rest of the podium was filled with Asian talent as 4AM Esports came second and Entus Progaming Force finished third. TSM came in at a comfortable sixth place which brought their position to fifth in the overall leaderboard.
An incredible grenade from Natus Vincere didn’t stop Tempo Storm, coached by Briton Ben ‘Microstar’ Kyle, achieving North America’s first win of the day. FaZe Clan, the European giants, and Natus Vincere finished second and third respectively on Miramar – one of the maps in PGC’s map pool.
A three-way fire-fight between FaZe, Genesis and TSM saw FaZe come out on top and go on to secure the final chicken dinner of the day. With this result, Gen.G topped the leaderboard and TSM waded in at sixth place – in reaching distance of the top spot.
When we met Rory ‘Rawryy’ Logue at the end of the day, we asked for his thoughts on the matches and whether or not he believed TSM could close the gap on the rest of the competition.
Rory said: “We won a lot of team fights and that’s what we’re good at right now. It was a big confidence boost for tomorrow, the last few games were really positive for us and that’s the sort of thing we want to continue.”
Grand Finals Recap – Day Two
The Grand Final’s championship Sunday saw FaZe Clan seemingly pick up where they left off on the first day. Securing their second chicken dinner of the event with ten kills and a highlight-worthy grenade from Anssi ‘mxey’ Pekknonen, the European side were off to a strong start.
Despite experiencing a slow beginning to the tournament, Natus Vincere played well and won the second game of the day. This win greatly improved their overall standing in the event as, prior to the chicken dinner, they found themselves in a frustrating 12th place. After the win in the second game, however, they moved up into seventh place.
Although they didn’t find themselves a podium finish in the second match, FaZe’s highlight-worthy grenades continued. In the second game it was David ‘Fuzzface’ Persson who landed a sweet double kill courtesy of an accurate nade:
The third match of the PGC Grand Final’s second day played host to some Chinese domination. Not only did QM Gaming sweep up T1 in a perfectly lined-up spray, but Wu ‘Forever’ Zheng snatched a chicken dinner for his team in a tantalizing 1v2 against Genesis.
TSM finished 12th in the third game of the day which, along with some other lacklustre results, found them in sixth place in the overall leaderboard.
VC Gaming came and conquered on Sanhok in the fourth game of the day. With ten kills under their belt, the game yielded them a total of 20 points which helped them climb three places in the overall leaderboard.
TSM received nine points thanks to four kills and a third place finish. This result saw them reaffirm their position at sixth place in the leaderboard.
The penultimate game saw 4AM Esports win big and secure themselves a total of 23 points – boosted by 11 kill points.
This result saw the leaderboard shape up for an enthralling final game to decide the overall winner. With just seven points between the first and third place teams, the trophy and its prize was in reaching distance for 4AM Esports, Gen.G and FaZe Clan.
In a series of twists and turns, both FaZe and 4AM Esports lost players whilst rotating, consequently putting them at a significant disadvantage. As the game continued, players were eliminated one by one until only Natus Vincere were left.
Although it was Natus Vincere that took the win in the last game, it was Gen.G that won the ultimate chicken dinner (pictured). In doing so, Gen.G secured themselves $2m in prize money and the bragging rights that come with winning the PGC – the biggest tournament in PUBG history.
TSM finished in seventh place; netting the organisation and its players a total of $80,000.
Stay up to date with esports-news.co.uk in the coming days and weeks for interviews with some of the UK talent present at the PGC Grand Finals
Disclaimer: Esports News UK’s flight, accomodation and expenses were provided by the event organisers for us to cover this event
Jamie has been following competitive Counter-Strike for roughly four years and has fallen in love with esports ever since, slowly branching out into other titles and learning more about the industry. He has recently started an esports degree in London.
“I started playing CSGO when I first got my own PC and haven’t really stopped ever since," he said. "After playing more competitively I opened my eyes to esports and have been doing my best to learn as much as possible about both the competitive side within CSGO and the business side across the industry as a whole.
"Much of my work so far has consisted of interviews, however I hope to branch out in the future and write more content about Counter-Strike."