Certified Juicer Moment Takes xQc Closer To Finals, CDawgVA To Face I Did A Thing

Certified Juicer Moment Takes xQc Closer To Finals, CDawgVA To Face I Did A Thing

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It was a day of sad goodbyes as five players were eliminated from PogChamps 5.

xQc won a tight match against Papaplatte, followed by three not-so-close match wins by Wirtual, QTCinderella, and I did a thing against Sykkuno, Jinnitty, and Tyler1 respectively. An intimidated CDawgVA closed the day with another close victory over the fighting Sapnap.

PogChamps 5 continues Tuesday, August 8, starting at 4 p.m. ET/22:00 CEST.

How to watch PogChamps 5

PogChamps 5 games, schedule, and all the details can be found here as part of our live events platform. 

Live commentary provided by IMs Levy Rozman and Danny Rensch.

  


Papaplatte 1.5-2.5 xQc

In a double-overtime thriller, xQc defeated “Paper Plate” to move on to the semifinals—but not after giving all his fans multiple heart attacks and scarring them for life. Before the match, Papaplatte prepared by playing xQc’s bot while Felix worked on puzzles.

And the puzzle-solving warmup paid off. xQc quickly saw Papaplatte’s mistake in their first game and took a knight—or “For Free,” as xQc put it.

With the material advantage and no counterplay for Papaplatte, xQc had an outstanding position. Those watching the game live had the unique opportunity of enjoying a live masterclass by xQc on the powerful Trident and the “sideways beaked” pawn formation:

After a few bings and bangs, xQc proceeded with the final boom to get the dub. 

But as excited as xQc was with his result, the match would not be that easy. A dubious opening play by xQc left him with a terrible position which eventually led him to lose a knight. Needing only a draw, xQc tried to claw his way out of his terrible situation, categorically declaring his opponent “was done” at one point. 

But Papaplatte was not done. After removing xQc’s rooks from the board, the German was on his way to deliver a ladder mate when xQc let his time run out one move before checkmate. 

The first game of the tiebreaks was absolute insanity. Papaplatte got a winning endgame with an extra pawn but eventually blundered his advantage away. The game soon ended with a draw by threefold repetition. 

The second and final tiebreak game was another crazy affair. xQc took advantage of his opponent’s open king and found a mating combination—but played it only after hovering over a queen blunder and letting his clock run down to seven seconds.

With a long day ahead, there was no time for an official post-match interview. Luckily, xQc was kind enough to conduct an interview with himself:

Wirtual 2-0 Sykkuno

Wirtual channeled his Norwegian chess powers to win his match against Sykkuno and move on to the semifinals of the Consolation Bracket.

Wirtual was clearly expecting an easy win in their first game, going for a Scholar’s Mate. However, Sykkuno played well and even got into a winning position. It was then that, eager not to get “his dude” (that is, his king) smoked, he played the only move that instantly got smoke on his dude. 

The second game wasn’t as close for Sykkuno. After blundering a piece and getting his queen trapped, he had just one strategy:

But Wirtual didn’t take the draw, instead taking the queen and capitalizing on his massive material advantage to win the second game. 

Wirtual’s victory revived allegations that he had deliberately lost his group stage matches to get a free plane ticket to Los Angeles as one of the Consolation Bracket’s finalists. No, this was not a smear campaign started by one of his rivals. Rather, it was an attempt by Wirtual’s coach, WFM Anna Cramling, to blame something else for her student’s performance. 

Confronted, Wirtual replied: “I’m not going to complain about a trip to L.A., playing chess, and learning more about the game. But I really would like to be in the Championship Bracket.”

Unfortunately, not even Cramling’s mighty Cow Opening could help Wirtual make it out of the “Death Group” alive. 

QTCinderella 2-0 Jinnitty

Still struggling with her sickness, QTCinderella came into the match rocking the classic “massive hungover” look. Maybe it was her cool shades; maybe it was her huge gallon of water. Whatever it was, it worked: QT defeated Jinnitty after winning both games.

If there’s a lesson to be learned from watching QT playing chess, it’s that you should always play the Stonewall. It doesn’t matter who you’re playing. It doesn’t matter what they’re playing. It doesn’t matter why, or how, or when, or where. Play the Stonewall, and happiness shall follow. 

It seemed like QT would have another easy game when Jinny hung a piece on move 10. However, Jinny came alive a few moves later and started playing like a traveling chess goddess, putting pressure on QT’s king. Sadly, as many great philosophers have pointed out, no one can escape the relentless passage of time—yes, she flagged. 

QT complimented her opponent in their post-match interview for her excellent play in their second game. And just as we all thought QT was going soft, she took her opportunity to trash-talk Squeex, who wasn’t even playing on Monday. 

I did a thing 2-0 Tyler1

Tyler streamed chess for nearly four hours before starting his first knockout match, climbing over 200 Elo points in a day and doubling his rating. Though some might have missed Tyler’s subtle signs of confidence going into the match, the more attentive viewers sure caught on: 

But if overconfidence is all you needed to play well, Chess.com would be crawling with GMs. I did a thing won both games to dispatch Tyler.

In the first game, the big T-Man (as no one calls Tyler) showed no restraints against his much higher-rated opponent. He quickly won a pawn and charged forward with his pieces, never looking back. But the problem with never looking back is that you sometimes miss a fork against your king. Other times, you miss two.

The second game was practically a reenactment of the first. Tyler quickly gained a pawn in the opening but faltered in the middlegame. After getting a huge material advantage, I did a thing checkmated Tyler. The Australian YouTuber then shared his opinion on Tyler’s play and pondered on Tyler’s secret to success. 

“I plan to ruin your whole event,” I did a thing said in his post-match interview. Not looking forward to flying all the way to the other side of the world, he proposed: “What we can do, Tyler, is if I win the next round and I get into the finals, you just turn up to the finals as me. Then I don’t have to fly to America. It’s a win-win.”

And what about Tyler? Before his final goodbye to PogChamps, he inspired the audience with a pep talk about how easy it is to play chess:

CDawgVA 2-1 Sapnap

CDawgVA is closer than ever to a very long plane ticket from Tokyo to Los Angeles after defeating Sapnap in the quarterfinals. 

The rating difference really showed in the first game when the favorite Connor took advantage of Sapnap going full Botez and blundering his pieces. 

Sapnap was in a difficult position in game two, down in material after missing a fork and losing a rook. But despite his bleak situation, he never gave up. Yet again, the Minecraft creator played for activity and eventually checkmated CDawgVA to take the decision to tiebreak. 

It was a balanced tiebreak until Sapnap overpressed and tried to checkmate instead of going for a draw. His strategy backfired when CDawg found great moves to get into a winning endgame, which he eventually converted—though not in the chillest way he was hoping for. 

CDawgVA now moves on to the semifinals and will face another favorite to win Pog 5, Alex from the I did a thing channel. “Alex messaged me the other day, and he asked me what’s my favorite opening,” CDawg shared. “I was like, ‘Why?'” he continued. “‘So I can practice against you.'”

Clever man, that Alex. 

Brackets

PogChamps 5 Championship Bracket day 9

PogChamps 5 Consolation Bracket day 9

All Games: Day 8

PogChamps 5 is Chess.com’s most popular chess event for creators. Featuring 16 players and a $100,000 prize fund, the event started on July 26, 2023, and ends on August 18, 2023, with live in-person finals happening in Los Angeles. Creators are divided into groups of four and play a single round-robin before moving on to either a Championship or Consolation bracket.


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