by Drew Malihan
MANILA - Despite Nexplay Evos' best efforts to counter the UBE strategy, the codex is still encrypted up to this day.
Blacklist International secured their 11th win of the season as they made a crucial comeback win against Nexplay Evos within three games to continue Week 6 of MPL Philippines Season 8.
Blacklist went to their usual five while Nexplay still utilized the Renejay on the exp lane with Hesa on the gold lane, Jeymz sitting out.
Nexpplay EVos went to a Renejay special Benedetta and a core Natan to go with Pharsa, Yve, and Khufra, while Blacklist went to full vision with Popol and Kupa and Yi Sun-shin along with Kimmy, Paquito and a tank Chou.
Despite Nexplay banning four OhMyV33nus heroes and stealing a potential two, Blacklist went to a great early to mid game with their lineup enough to scout all five NXPE heroes, getting their farm and map control.
Contrary to their gold lane strategy, Blacklist went for a rotation that sees V33nus rotate around Edward against Renejay's Benedetta to help the prized side laner outbox NXPE.
From there, Nexplay Evos went to full defense mode in their base but to no avail as Blacklist went into full offensive mode, negating the side lanes while calling for the GG push with the luminous lord with a low-scoring 8-3 game with Hadji's 1/0/5 with the Chou leading the defending champs.
NXPE went to a gold lane Claude and a exp lane Paquito to go with Lancelot, Yve, and Grock, while Blacklist went to the same lineup but with the Benedetta for Edward.
Blacklist went to the same strategy and even leading in the first four minutes but a series of pickoffs to OhMyV33nus's Popol and Kupa gave space to Nexplay to get their objectives, including three turtles.
It was a see-saw affair for both teams with Blacklist even going to their jungler Wise to split push in the bottom lane, but with the two lord takes, Nexplay's firepower were enough to hold off the defending champs and force a third game with H2WO's 9/1/3 tally leading the team.
Blacklist went to draft a gold lane Natan and an exp lane Phoveus to go with Rafaela, Yi Sun-shin, and Chou, while Blacklist went to a Lancelot.
Nexplay sets the tempo from the get go, forcing Blacklist to group up early and avoid the economy game, getting the top lane defended while Renejay forcing Edward to go out of his lane and eventually got picked by the rest of NXPE members.
Nexplay tried to get the luminous lord in the 13th minute but a series of defenses led by OhMyV33nus and Edward led to the zoning out of NXPE, as even NXPE take the lord, they are unable to call GGs.
With the third lord in the mix, both teams waited for someone to initiate but with NXPE extending and being lured with the YellyHaze ultimate, Blacklist went to contest the lord and even take down Yawi's Grock and all inhibitor turrets.
A shot call from OhMyV33nus and Oheb burst down H2WO, forcing him to activate the Winter Truncheon but to no avail despite YehhlyHaze's Real World Manipilation, and it all went downhill for Nexplay Evos with Hadji stunning Renejay and the rest of Blacklist forcing YellyHaze's ultimate to no avail as Blacklist pulled the comeback win with Oheb's Natan registering a perfect 6/0/6 with 100 percent kill participation.
Blacklist International, now with 28 points, take the first slot of the upper bracket with three games to spare, and will face ONIC Philippines in a battle of the top teams on Sunday.
Nexplay Evos will try to bounce back and continue their campaign for a playoff spot against TNC Pro Team, also on Sunday.
Follow him on Twitter: @drewmalihan