Oct 13 2016 - 4:13 pm

SK Gaming, Immortals, Fnatic among qualified teams for ESL Pro League finals

With one day of online league play left, some of the world's biggest sides have booked their place in the ESL Pro League finals
Callum Leslie
Weekend Editor, Dot Esports.

With one day of online league play left, some of the world's biggest sides have booked their place in the ESL Pro League finals.

SK Gaming, Ninjas in Pyjamas, and Fnatic are among those who have qualified for the finals in Brazil, joining North American league stage winners Cloud9 who were the first team to reach the finals.

Cloud9 have dropped just one game this season against Echo Fox, and finish with a 25-1 record. They were due to play two maps against SK Gaming today, but after securing their spot in the finals SK elected to forfeit their final game. According to captain Gabriel "FalleN" Toledo, this is to allow them to leave for their pre-event bootcamp straight away.

Alongside SK and Cloud9, Immortals are the only other team to have booked their place to compete in front of their home fans. With each team playing two maps today NRG eSports, OpTic Gaming and Renegades currently occupy the remaining spots, with Team Liquid and Echo Fox potentially able to sneak in on the final day.

In Europe only two spots remain up for grabs, with Mousesports, Fnatic, Ninjas in Pyjamas and FaZe Clan all having qualified and sitting on 17-7 records. Team Dignitas and EnVyUs are in pole position to claim those places, with Virtus Pro and G2 Esports also having a shot.

The final day could get messy, as Dignitas and EnVyUs will play each other—as will Virtus Pro and G2 Esports.

One team who will not be making the trip to Brazil is Natus Vincere, after losing two maps against FaZe Clan yesterday.  

Jan 22 2017 - 10:55 pm

EnVyUs survive Team Liquid comeback for overtime win

It was the closest game of the Major so far.
Callum Leslie
Weekend Editor, Dot Esports.
Photo via Turner Sports

Team EnVyUs survived a mammoth comeback attempt from Team Liquid to chalk up an overtime victory in their first match of the ELEAGUE Major.

Despite Team Liquid fighting back against eight match points, the French side were able to hold on and win in triple overtime in the closest game of the Major so far.

Drawing a relatively even map of Cache, the two teams were evenly matched in the early going. EnVyUs put up four unanswered rounds but Team Liquid didn't let the French run away with it, and drew it back 4-4. The teams remained relatively inseparable throughout the first half as Liquid defended well, allowing EnVyUs just a three round lead at half time.

However once the second half got started, the French side went off. EnVyUs AWPer Kenny "kennyS" Schrub was in top form picking off his American opponents, and it took a superhuman effort for Liquid to even get a T round. That came in the form of a sniper quadkill from Josh "jdm64" Marzano, who almost single handedly dragged his team back into this match.

The quadkill came in the nick of time, as EnVyUs were leading 15-7 and were just one round away from sealing the match.

Liquid rallied, eating into the lead of their French rivals. In a comeback that looked unfathomable Liquid managed eight rounds in a row to take it to overtime as the score hit 15-15.

After the teams were inseparable in the first period, a second overtime was called for. This time it was EnVyUs who needed to mount a comeback, as Liquid took it 20-18 and a match point of their own. They put themselves ahead at 21-19, but levelled things up once again.

In the third set of overtime rounds, EnVyUs were finally able to put the Legend side away. The French team put together four straight round wins to win the match at 25-21—a match that very nearly slipped away from them.

Jan 22 2017 - 9:41 pm

SK Gaming and Na`Vi avoid upset in ELEAGUE bows

Decisive wins saw the legend teams avoid any slip ups early.
Callum Leslie
Weekend Editor, Dot Esports.
Photo via Turner Sports

SK Gaming and Natus Vincere picked up wins in their opening matches at the ELEAGUE Major, avoiding potential early banana skins.

The reigning Major champions, aiming to be the first team to win three Majors back to back, knocked back Hellraisers in their opening matchup of the Swiss stage.

Despite being predicted as a potential upset by analyst Duncan "Thorin" Shields, the match proved to be little trouble for the Brazilians. After losing the first round, SK went on a rampage of eight straight rounds with Hellraisers having no answer for their opponents.

The game finished 11-4 at the half. Hellraisers were able to win three of the next five rounds and threaten some kind of late rally, but SK easily shut it down to claim a 16-3 victory.

Things were even easier for Natus Vincere, who claimed the most decisive victory of the day so far. The Columbus Major silver medalists run roughshod over Mousesports, winning five straight rounds to get the game started before Mousesports even got out of the blocks. Mousesports were given very few openings throughout the game, with a 13-2 half ending in a 16-3 win—the biggest victory margin of the opening round so far.

In a meeting of ELEAGUE champions Virtus Pro and OpTic Gaming made it more of a contest, with the Polish side narrowly edging the victory.

OpTic took the early lead 6-1, thanks in part to an insane 1v3 clutch from Keith "NAF" Markovic inside the B bomb site. OpTic ended the half 9-6, but Virtus Pro came out strong in the second period.

The teams traded rounds to bring things level at 13-13, but Virtus Pro had the economic advantage and OpTic could not prevent the Polish veterans from securing the three decisive rounds.