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Fans React to Verzuz Battle with Ashanti and Keyshia Cole After Late Start, Sound Issues
Ultimately, Billboard called the competition for Ashanti with a final score of 12 rounds won to Cole's 10, with three rounds resulting in a tie
The two R&B powerhouses' Verzuz showdown finally played out on Thursday night — after being rescheduled twice — with the singers going head to head for the platform's Instagram Live session, performing their top hits (and some new music, to boot).
Before complimenting Ashanti's appearance upon her delayed arrival, the live got off to a slow start with Cole showing up about an hour late to the session, which was originally scheduled to start at 8 p.m. ET
"Finally here!" Cole said when she arrived a little after 9 p.m..
"I don't know who all's attending because at this point, we running way too behind," the singer, 39, said in the split-screen broadcast.
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Johnny Nunez/WireImage Keyshia Cole and Ashanti
While the ladies started out having some audio issues, they soon got into the swing of the competition, performing some of their most recognizable tracks to the delight of fans everywhere.
For Ashanti, 40, this included "Happy" (round 1), "Rock wit U (Awww Baby)" (round 4), "Rain on Me" (round 8) and "Foolish" (round 17).
Round 8 also saw Cole perform "Love" (with a surprise cameo by rapper O.T. Genasis, securing her the wine that round, according to Billboard). Throughout the battle, she also sang hits like "I Remember" (round 5), "Heaven Sent" (round 11), and "Let It Go" (round 16).
Ultimately, Billboard called the battle for Ashanti with a final score of 12 rounds won to Cole's 10, with three rounds resulting in a tie, according to the outlet's judging.
The Verzuz started off a lil shaky but ended up being a great vibe
— Where The Funny Resides (@carlcp4) January 22, 2021
The #Verzuz ended up being decent. I love me some Ashanti.
— Creative Agent C (@HelloChandraM) January 22, 2021
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While many fans weren't happy about having to wait an hour for the session to start, others praised both Ashanti and Cole for their dynamic and putting on an entertaining show.
Others weren't quite so forgiving. Many fans and viewers tagged Verzuz on Twitter and inquired about the production value and the late start.
"Who is is distracting Ashanti?? Who is messing up Keyisha's sound??? Where did Keyisha just go?? WE WAITED! WHAT IS GOING ON #Verzuz TEAM???" one tweeted.