At the halftime break of Sunday’s Week 3 Overwatch League match, few expected London Spitfire to pull off the win against Washington Justice. After dropping the entirety of the 2018 championship squad and losing their first two matches of the season it was up the team to show they have what it takes.
What followed were some of the most exciting rounds of competitive Overwatch ever played. Spitfire surprised everyone with a nail-biting reverse sweep against the Washington Justice, the first from 0-2 down this season.
— Overwatch League (@overwatchleague) February 24, 2020
Here’s how they managed to do it.
Winning the battle of the star damage dealers
The Overwatch League meta right now is built around star damage players. They control the game through scoring opening kills to begin fights or finishing them with big ultimate plays. This match was a test of skill, pitting Spitfire’s Gil-seong “Glister” Lim against Justice’s Corey “Corey” Nigra, and it was a battle that Glister won overall.
Both players led their teams in final blows, but Glister, with 60, had a slight edge on Corey’s 53. Glister had 17 final blows with Reaper, a hero he played much more of than Corey. This flexibility enabled London to play a different, more aggressive composition when it suited them, one of the reasons they managed to pull off their remarkable comeback.
Spawn camping the Justice for an entire map
A popular strategy for Escort maps right now is to spawn camp the attacking team. The aim is to win a few initial fights, then fall back and contest at the end of point A where the spawn advantage is more favorable to the defenders.
The Spitfire tried this strategy on the third map, Dorado. They won the first team fight, and then kept on winning, holding the Justice at the door for over four minutes. This meant that on their attacking round Spitfire only had to push the payload 4.31m in order to win, which they easily achieved.
With some stand out Lucio play
London’s new Lucio player Kyu-min “SanGuiNar” Lim really distinguished himself in this match. Across the five maps, the aggressive Lucio scored seven environmental kills. To put that in context only two other Lucio’s have had more than seven environmental kills in total. After this match SanGuiNar has the highest number of total kills, 17, nearly double the next best number; both Brice “FDGod” Monsçavoir on Paris Eternal and Daniel “FunnyAstro” Hathaway on Philadelphia Fusion have nine environmental kills.
In one crucial environmental kill on Nepal SanGuiNar took out Corey as well as Yeonjoon “ArK” Hong midway through activating his Sound Barrier. In one move SanGuiNar denied Justice the support ultimate and scored two kills.
— London Spitfire (@Spitfire) February 24, 2020
Not giving up… even when the odds were against them
What was truly impressive was the rookie Spitfire squad’s mental fortitude. Through two moments where everything seemed lost and Spitfire managed to hold their nerve to achieve victory. First coming back after halftime two matches down, and starting their reverse sweep with that incredible hold on Dorado. Then in the final map of the match recovering from a team kill and losing control with Justice at 78% completion, Glister came back with a two kill Deadeye to swing the fight back in Spitfire’s favor and clutch the match.
The London Spitfire squad showed the strength and discipline of a much more experienced team. If they can continue to perform this well under pressure, then they will be a force to be reckoned with this season.