When it comes to competitive Counter-Strike in 2020, all roads have led us to Cologne! The world’s best CS:GO teams fought tooth and nail to ascend the ESL Pro Tour rankings and secured their spot at one of the two 2020 Masters Championships, ESL One: Cologne.
The Group Stage is now behind us and we’re heading straight for the action in this week’s preview of ESL One: Cologne Playoffs. Let’s have a look at the 32 teams in Europe, North America, Asia and Oceania as they stake their claim at the hefty prize purse!
As this year’s global competitions are off-limits, the current format resulted in a separation of teams into regions and divisions of unequal strength. Since the performance of the teams cannot be accessed and compared reliably, the 32 bands of warriors competed in four individual tournaments across four regions. Seeding was determined by the number of points obtained in the ESL Pro League, ESL One: Road to Rio and DreamHack Masters Spring.
In the European and North American divisions, the Playoffs will be played in a single-elimination bracket. All matches are best-of-three, excluding the Grand Final best-of-five. This format is identical to the one in Asia and Oceania, with one minor difference: the upper-bracket team will be heading into the Grand Final with one map advantage.
Europe’s 16 top CS:GO teams made it to Cologne, but only eight remain standing. In Group A, Sprout, Complexity, OG and Ninjas in Pyjamas saw no obstacle too large to overcome. All four teams swept through the opposing BIG, Mad Lions, Natus Vincere and mousesports, respectively. In Group B, Astralis, G2 Esports, Heroic and Team Vitality triumphed over Team Heretics, Faze Clan, MIBR and fan-favourites Fnatic.
Remaining Teams: Astralis, Complexity Gaming, G2 Esports, Heroic, OG, Ninjas in Pyjamas, Sprout and Team Vitality.
Prize Pool: $325,000
With only eight competing teams, the NA Group Stage wrapped up rather quickly. Group A’s Chaos Esports Club and Furia Esports pushed out 100 Thieves and Gen.G Esports, while Group B’s Evil Geniuses and Team Liquid downright shoved Cloud9 and Triumph back to the bench.
Remaining Teams: Chaos Esports Club, Evil Geniuses, Furia Esports and Team Liquid.
Prize Pool: $135,000
The four teams in the Asian division are gunning for the finals as we write. Tyloo and ViCi Gaming emerged victorious in the first two rounds, shortly after which Tyloo stomped ViCi in a 2-1. Beyond Esports and Invictus are due to clash on 28 August in a last-ditch effort for the Grand Final.
Remaining Teams: Beyond Esports, Invictus Gaming, TYLOO, and ViCi Gaming.
Prize Pool: $20,000
Oceania’s top four have their eyes on the prize! Renegades are in the lead over ORDER, with Chiefs ESC and Avant Gaming scheduled for an early-morning match on 28 August. The winner of this matchup will go up against the upper-bracket loser. Although results are still up in the air, it looks like Renegades won’t leave ESL One: Cologne anytime soon.
Remaining Teams: Avant Gaming, Chiefs ESC, ORDER, and Renegades.
Prize Pool: $20,000
Tune in and watch the CS:GO ESL One: Cologne Playoffs online, streamed live on the ESL One Live platform.
If a match is currently in play, you will be directed to the live stream instantly. To view all tournament streams, videos and best-of highlights, look for ‘ESL TV’ on the left-hand menu.
We’re just in time to catch two of EU’s last matches before the Grand Final. Astralis are at 13/25 (1.52) to win their clash with Ninjas in Pyjamas at 14/9 (2.55) to topple the favourites.
Shortly after, we will see Evil Geniuses who are 7/12 (1.58) to defeat Team FURIA at 7/5 (2.40) to unleash their fury.
If you’re interested in wagering on CS:GO tournaments, we’ve got you covered at EnergyBet with our unrivalled ESL One: Cologne betting markets. Check out the latest, top-tier odds for this season’s action-packed matchups and back your favourites to take the win!
Be sure to come back for more, we’ll be keeping you up to date with CS:GO standings and upcoming events at stellar betting odds.
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