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Stephano vs NaNiWa recap

Stephano, one of the best if not the best zerg player in the world, faced the swede NaNiWa in a Best of 3 at 11 A.M today.

However, despite of these players standing on top of the Starcraft 2 world, both of them lost their first matches .

Sheth defeated Stephano while NaNiWa lost against ClouD. This put the players in a very harsh position, as whoever lost this series had nearly no chance of advancing from the Round of 32.

Game 1

The players spawned cross-map on Tal’darim Altar, with Stephano spawning in the bottom left and NaNiWa in the upper right.  Stephano, expecting a macro-oriented game and built a ton of drones as well as ignoring taking down the destructible debris and taking the base near the bottom left as his third since it’d be faster, but NaNiWa placed a proxy pylon near the rocks and went for an early +1 weapons upgrade zealot push. Unfortunately for Stephano, NaNiWa spotted his third and sent in a wave of sentries to accompany the zealots to kill off the queen with the help of force fields as well as blocking off a lot of drones.

Stephano managed to push NaNiWa back, but NaNiWa managed to kill off his third. NaNiWa then attempted to do some harass with blink stalkers, but Stephano had tons of roaches and eliminated the stalkers with the help of a very nice sandwich and started to do the counter-push, seriously threatening NaNiWa, but thanks to an immortal saving the day, NaNiWa managed to push Stephano back.

NaNiWa attempted to place a proxy pylon at Stephano’s now rebuilt third, but it was scouted by an overlord and killed off . Stephano then made even more roaches, and tried to catch NaNiWa’s stalker-heavy army off-guard, but NaNiWa put down some amazing force field walls and managed to take the roaches out with the help of his immortals and collosi, and proceeded to win the game.

Game 2

Stephano picked Antiga Shipyard, a map he’s very comfortable with and plays well on. The version played here at DreamHack forces cross-spawns, so you can micro very safely. NaNiWa did what he usually does, a forge fast expand, and Stephano responded by getting a VERY early third. Stephano droned up a lot and was very ahead in workers. NaNiWa then tried to go for some dark templars, but Stephano forsaw this and placed down a few spore crawlers. Stephano then proceeded to go into a roach-hydra mix.

NaNiWa then decided to do a sentry drop, and warped in some zealots to try to take out Stephano’s lair, and just barely failed to kill it off. Simultaneously, Stephano did a counter-push and managed to take out NaNiWa’s second expansion and had the upper hand. NaNiWa then sent out some DT’s to take care of Stephano’s fourth expansion, but Stephano managed to save it by the skin of his teeth. After that NaNiWa attempted to drop in Stephano’s main yet again, but this time Stephano was more than ready for it and NaNiWa barely managed to save the warp prism, but lost all of what were in it.

Stephano, now supply-capped, killed off a few roaches to make some place for some corruptors. NaNiWa, who was behind almost the whole game, managed to get a really big army and sent out some stalkers to take out Stephano’s fifth expansion. At the same time he pushed out with the rest of his forces and met Stephano in battle. Thanks to, yet again, some very nice force field action, NaNiWa came out with the most units left, and most importantly he still had four immortals, which are known to be very effective against roaches. He decided that now was the time to push, and proceeded to kill off Stephano’s fourth and a lot of his army, which eventually led to Stephano losing the game.

Conclusion

The outcome of the Stephano vs. NaNiWa series wasn’t something many people expected, with NaNiWa winning 2-0. Both players played very impressive games., with Stephano showing off just how fast he can replace his armies, and NaNiWa showing some great skill with his force fields.

Later on, NaNiWa managed to defeat Sheth, and since Sheth won his two earlier games, those two advanced while Stephano & ClouD were knocked out.

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