Grayhound and ViCi Gaming grab the last two slots in the Playoffs of IEM Katowice 2019 - Asia Minors

Aditya Singh Rawat

23rd, Jan, 2019

Cover Image Courtesy: Intel Extreme Masters

The second day of IEM Katowice 2019 – Asia Minor witnessed four match-ups take place between the remaining contenders after MVP.PK and Renegades qualified for the Playoffs yesterday.

CyberZen had to fight hard to make it through the Elimination Match against Aequus. The Middle Eastern team won the first match on Mirage but failed to impress on the remaining maps, faltering to CyberZen who moved on to face Grayhound in the Decider Match. The decider was the most entertaining match-up of the day with all the last map going the way of Grayhound.

ViCi Gaming in the other group prevailed over both its adversaries. First making quick work of Beyond Esports in the Elimination Match-up, who lacked in both teamwork and execution. Moving on to the decider ViCi squared up against GOSU, defeating them on their own map pick, following which an overtime thriller on Train witnessed ViCi claim victory and qualify on to the Playoffs.

Match Breakdown

Fatal Inexperience

The problem with Aequus lies in their lack of experience, Anarkez was the only player from their side that had a reasonable overall rating standing at 1.21.  

If we only consider the ratings of the players on Mirage, the map which they won, we can observe that all the players apart from Pontk have performed really well but as soon as we shift our focus to the other two maps it is clearly visible how underprepared the team actually is. While Anarkez is in top form and displays a solid performance across all the three maps, the rest of the team falters beyond their comfort zone.

Lack of experience and a limited map pool is the reason behind their collapse beyond Mirage. 

A Great Hurdle

Beyond performed well enough, no one expected much from the side and probably the team will take this experience with them on their journey ahead. The weakest team in the group, they gave it their best shot but there is a huge hurdle which separates them from the other participants. 

The team might be one of the best in Thailand but they need to train a lot more in order to compete against international teams. 

Bright Future Awaits

GOSU has three players who are 18 years old which is why they might have seemed a little less experienced, but they made up for it with the explosive firepower that the side has. 

The inexperience was the reason behind the fluctuating performance. Yesterday we witnessed Seoke perform like a beast and today he was probably the worst, losing simple trades while getting caught out of position on multiple occasions. 

They should only take the positives and move ahead; the team is still young and has a bright future ahead if they keep growing at this rate. They put up quite a fight against ViCi Gaming, a team containing top Chinese CS:GO veterans, giving them quite a scare on their own map pick.

Valiant Effort

CyberZen played really well. I would place them at the same level as Grayhound. All the side needs is more exposure to some quality scrimmage along with an intense boot camp to polish their executes. 

CyberZen has the ability to break a team's momentum and take the victory away from them, they can shift instantly between aggressive rushes and tactical holds. The team has the experience and the exposure, a little focus during the closing rounds and clutch situations will go a long way for the side. 

Apart from Savage, all the other CyberZen players held a better KD difference when compared to the Grayhound line-up, clearly struggling with their aims the team stepped-up at crucial moments to sweep victory in their favour. If CyberZen can take care of this really important issue, the future holds promise for the side.

Stay tuned as the Playoffs will be starting tomorrow. The schedule is as follows: 

  • Renegades vs ViCi Gaming – 14:30 

  • MVP PK vs Grayhound – 18:00 

The stream can be streamed live by clicking HERE.

All the stats referred to in the article have been taken from HLTV.


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