Cover Image Courtesy: ESL Counter-Strike
Another exciting day at IEM Katowice 2019 – Asia Minor comes to a close with Renegades and Grayhound moving on to the Winner’s Finals while their opponents drop down to the Lower Bracket.
The Playoffs commenced today with Renegades going-up against ViCi Gaming in the first encounter of the day followed by MVP.PK taking on Grayhound Gaming.
ViCi pulled off a great match on Mirage, surprising everyone but failed to convert it into a win as Renegades fought their way back, moving onto the Winner’s Final.
GG WP! @Renegades take train 16:7 and win the series 2:1! They will advance to the upper bracket final tomorrow! @ViCi_Gaming will fall into the lower bracket.#IEM https://t.co/fTBRGvbUbv pic.twitter.com/uf9XDbyam4— Intel®ExtremeMasters (@IEM) January 24, 2019
MVP.PK, on the other hand, was in top form as they dominated Grayhound on Nuke but for the second time in the day, a comeback was witnessed as Grayhound took the wins on both Cache and Dust 2, making their way onto the Winner’s Final.
GG! @grayhoundgaming triumph on Dust 2 16:8 and take the series 2:1! They will face @Renegades in the Upper bracket final tomorrow! @MVP_GG will drop into the lower bracket.#IEM https://t.co/fTBRGuUiMV pic.twitter.com/ZlwQA3cx8E— Intel®ExtremeMasters (@IEM) January 24, 2019
Not Too ViCious
ViCi were surprisingly good on Renegades map pick, Mirage. ViCi tested the waters and took off from the third round onwards to secure an 11-4 lead. This was possible because of their aggressive rushes and the ability to choke Renegades by securing good map control.
The win on Mirage was definitely a great morale boost for ViCi but Renegades were not done yet as they broke ViCi on Inferno. Playing as CT the defensive set up by the Australian side was impenetrable as ViCi was only able to secure one round in the first half, losing out on the game soon after.
The decider took place on Train where ViCi was expected to give a tough fight to Renegades but instead buckled under the pressure, underperforming quite heavily. ViCi acquired a solid start which lost momentum in the seventh round, not able to recover, the Chinese squad gave way as Renegades won the match and took the series ‘2-1’ in their favour.
MVP dominated on Nuke, outplaying their opponents with their spot-on executions and some great reads on their movements as well. Just as it looked that they might have a good chance of making it through, Grayhound avenged the fall on Nuke by winning on their own map pick, Cache.
The decider on Dust was taken care of in style by Grayhound who ran some beautiful executes and kept the momentum rolling to see the match go in their favour all the way through.
Erkast was on fire top fragging for Grayhounds in all the three maps, the ‘Mongolian Monster’ was unstoppable constantly finding picks and not falling down without trading in equal measure. MVP faced inconsistent performances, though they were able to strategies and follow through on Nuke, the team looked really weak on the other maps losing out on their holds while falling easy prey to rotates coming in from the Australian side. Xeta played quite well but the rest of the team just couldn’t find their groove.
Stay tuned as we will be witnessing the clash of the two Asian teams, ViCi and MVP in the Lower Bracket tomorrow at 14:30 IST followed by the two Australian teams clashing with each other once more in the Winner’s Final at 18:00 IST.
Watch the stream live by clicking HERE.