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Filipino-laden Team SMG finishes 4th in international Valorant debut

MANILA, Philippines – Team SMG ended its overseas debut at fourth place after succumbing to home team Team Liquid Brazil, 1-2, in the lower bracket semifinals of the 2023 Valorant Game Changers in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

The squad was reinforced by three Filipino players in Kelly "shirazi" Jaudian, Alexandria "Alexy" Francisco and Camille "Kamiyu" Enriquez, joining teammates Singaporean Abigail "Kohaibi" Kong and Indonesian Odella "enerii" Abraham.

Team SMG started strong, sweeping North America champions Evil Geniuses Game Changers, even with a mistake at the drafting with Asia-Pacific champions using a four duelist roster, thinking at the initial start was just a ping test.

But their 35-map win streak came to a halt at the hands of European team G2 Gozen. The Asia-Pacific powerhouse thus dropped to the lower brackets against Latin America champions KRU Blaze.

Team SMG once again asserted their dominance in defeating KRU Blaze in strong map outings (13-3 and 13-7) to keep their championship bid alive.

Winning the first map, Team SMG was poised to move on to the lower bracket finals but the Brazilian squad managed to secure a reverse sweep to eliminate the Asia-Pacific representatives.

Team SMG took home $50,000 (approximately P2.7 million).