In just under two weeks, the best teams in Counter-Strike will travel to Ohio to compete for $1 million in the first North American major. But the event will also feature another competition, with regional pride at stake.
In addition to the Counter-Strike major itself, organizers MLG will also stage an all-star game as part of the final day of the event.
Teams of five from Europe and the Americas will face off giving a platform to long-standing regional rivalries.
For the first time, five teams from the Americas have qualified for a Counter-Strike major, giving the region a reasonable talent pool for the event. On the other side, players from eleven European sides are in the running. No more than two players from one team will be included, and if a player’s team makes the final they will be out of the running too.
MLG’s Adam Apicella revealed the results as of late last night on Twitter.
For Europe, Fnatic star Olof “olofmeister” Kajbjer is unsurprisingly leading the poll by a strong margin over second place Ladislav “GuardiaN” Kovács from Na`Vi—though both those teams may be strong bets to make the final. Ninjas in Pyjamas ace Christopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund, rising star Nikola “NiKo” Kovač, and EnVyUs AWPer Kenny “kennyS” Schrub make up the rest of the current top five.
For the Americas, Luminosity captain Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo has a narrow lead ahead of Team Liquid’s Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev—Kostyliev’s eligibility for the Americas being set by his team’s region rather than his own (he’s originally from the Ukraine). They’re followed by Mike “shroud” Grzesiek of Cloud9, lone American Spencer “Hiko” Martin of Liquid and Toledo’s team mate Marcelo “coldzera” David.
If your favorite isn’t currently in the top five, don’t worry—you still have eight days to try and get them on the team.
Photo via DreamHack/Flickr (Used with permission, all rights reserved)