StarLadder i-League StarSeries Season 3 - Round three recap

CS:GO Aleksei “Aleksei.L” Louchnikov

Round three of the Swiss group stage at the StarLadder i-League StarSeries Season 3 LAN finals has concluded, with two teams advancing to the playoffs and two sent packing.

An action packed day three at the StarLadder i-League StarSeries Season 3 LAN finals saw two teams in Natus Vincere and G2 Esports advance to the playoffs of the tournament, whilst TyLoo and UYA were sent packing for a long journey home. Barring these extremities, twelve teams are stuck in the middle, fighting for survival in the tournament. Their fates will be determined in tomorrow's rounds 4 & 5. Following are the team standings upon conclusion of day 3:

Win/Loss: 3-0 Win/Loss: 2-1 Win/Loss: 1-2 Win/Loss: 0-3
CIS Natus Vincere Europe FaZe Clan Korea MVP Project China TyLoo
France G2 Esports Europe HellRaisers Brazil Immortals China UYA
  Denmark North Kazakhstan Gambit Esports  
  Sweden Ninjas in Pyjamas United States Counter Logic Gaming  
  Brazil SK Gaming Poland Virtus.pro  
  Denmark Astralis Sweden Fnatic  

Below you will find the schedule for tomorrow's matches:

08:00 - Korea MVP Project vs. Brazil Immortals
09:15 - Kazakhstan Gambit Esports vs. United States Counter Logic Gaming
10:30 - Poland Virtus.pro vs. Sweden Fnatic
11:45 - Europe FaZe Clan vs. Denmark North
13:00 - Europe HellRaisers vs. Sweden Ninjas in Pyjamas
14:15 - Denmark Astralis vs. Brazil SK Gaming
16:15 - Round 5 match-up #1
17:30 - Round 5 match-up #2
17:30 - Round 5 match-up #3

For those interested in brief recaps of each of the matches, please read below:

Korea MVP Project vs. China TyLoo - de_Mirage 19:16 (8:7, 7:8, 4:1)

The first match of the day saw a clash between two Asian representatives, only one of which would remain in the race, as both teams had a 0:2 win/loss record. MVP Project kicked off on the T side, where the team was successfully able to take away the pistol round. TyLoo had other things in mind, force buying and surprising their opponents by dispatching the entire team in round two. Despite a rather successful upset, the following rounds were not accrued by the Chinese. A total of five consecutive rounds followed in favour of MVP, extending the Korean roster's lead to 6:1. TyLoo did not allow the initial half to fall lop-sided, securing a total of six additional rounds, placing the teams at a close 8:7 with MVP in the lead.

The second pistol round once again went in favour of MVP Project, on the CT side on this occasion. TyLoo were unable to reproduce the same second round result as prior, resulting in the Koreans grabbing the two rounds post-pistol. During the first gun round TyLoo seemed to have woken up, as the Chinese started clocking in the rounds one by one. Conceding but four rounds in the latter half, TyLoo were able to push the map into overtime. The momentum wasn't carried over to the extra rounds by the Chinese, resulting in a 4:1 victory for MVP Project. TyLoo are sent packing, whilst the Koreans hang in there for the following Swiss rounds.

Brazil Immortals vs. China UYA - de_Cobblestone 16:11 (8:7, 8:4)

A closer match than expected between the Brazilian team and the Chinese side. Immortals grab the initial pistol, followed by two rounds, producing an immediate 3:0 lead. Once the gun round came along, UYA made sure to demonstrate they weren't about to give up, securing a bomb plant and subsequently a round. Three additional rounds fell  in favour of the Chinese before the Brazilians were able to cut the streak with a W on round eight.

After this, UYA were able to secure a total of two additional rounds, the rest of which went into the Brazilian round bank. An extremely close initial half at 8:7. On the T side, Immortals seemed a bit more confident and that reflected in their aggressive plays. The pistol round once again fell in favour of the Brazilians, allowing for a further two to develop thanks to the device advantage. Following the initial rounds it was essentially domination from Immortals, with the occasional round pulled off by UYA. Round 27 saw the finalisation of the map, with a 16:11 score. UYA are the second Chinese team to be eliminated from the tournament.

Europe FaZe Clan vs. Kazakhstan Gambit Esports - de_Cache 16:13 (9:6, 7:7)

An incredibly close match between two strong European teams saw FaZe clench it in the end. The European mix kicked off with a pistol round victory, following it up with the two additional rounds. Gambit cut the streak on their first gun round, preventing any development of momentum for the opponents. As a matter of fact the team was able to grab an additional four rounds, prior to FaZe waking up from dormancy. At a 3-5 deficit karrigan and co. step their game up, grabbing six rounds in their favour  prior to the conclusion of the initial half at 9:6. In the latter half things got quite shaky, as Gambit outperformed their opponents in the pistol round and subsequent two rounds, erasing the round differential all together. Neither team was able to produce an extensive string of wings after this situation, going even in rounds. The surplus attained by the European mix in the initial half was instrumental in securing their second victory at a close 16:13 score.

Europe HellRaisers vs. United States Counter Logic Gaming - de_Mirage 16:11 (14:1, 2:10) 

HellRaisers demonstrated a monstrous T side, followed by an extraordinarily weak CT side that could have potentially cost them the game. All there is to say regarding the initial half is that the spotlight of it's entirety were HellRaisers. All Counter Logic Gaming were able to produce was a bomb defuse on round nine, whilst the rest of the fourteen rounds were accrued by the European mix. After switching sides, the Americans entered the limelight, producing similar results. In the most epic attempt at a comeback the team is able to secure a whopping ten consecutive rounds on their opponents. Despite this colossal attempt, HellRaisers managed to just about clench the two final rounds of the second half to close the map out at 16:11. 

CIS Natus Vincere vs. Denmark North - 16:11 (11:4, 5:7) - de_Mirage 16:11 (11:4, 5:7)

Na'Vi are the first team to secure a placement in the playoffs of the tournament, as they deal with North in a fairly convincing manner. In what seems to be a recurring theme of the tournament, the Danes kicked off on the CT side where they were successfully able to secure a pistol round, only to instantly be shut down by a Na'Vi force-buy on round two. A reverse of the situation was seen once again in round 3, where the Danes managed to place the ball back in their favour. Na'Vi wasn't having it, as the team grabbed the following three rounds to land a 4-2 lead. Despite efforts, the Danes were able to secure but two additional rounds over the course of the initial half, concluding it at 11:4. In the final twelve rounds of the map, North were able to secure the majority, however the deficit they let slip initially proved fatal, knocking the team out of the race as Na'Vi secured five rounds to close the map at 16:11.

Sweden Ninjas in Pyjamas vs. Poland Virtus.pro - de_Nuke 16:5 (11:4, 5:1)

The Ninjas in Pyjamas secured a strong victory against the Polish powerhouse, who won as few as five rounds over the course of the map. The Swedish team initialised on the CT side, securing the pistol and second round. Following this victory, the teams exchanged a round each to land at a 3:2 score line. In a dominant stint, the Ninjas are able to further their lead, having decimated the Poles in five consecutive rounds, landing at 8:2. In some attempt to come back the Poles are able to secure rounds 11 and 13, however this was all she wrote for the initial half, as the Ninjas close shop with an 11:4 surplus. The second pistol, again, goes in favour of NiP, followed by two additional rounds. In a last-ditch attempt at coming back into the game, Virtus.pro grab round four of the second half, that being all they would show right until the end. Ninjas in Pyjamas secure their second victory in the group stage at 16:5.

France G2 Esports vs. Brazil SK Gaming - de_Overpass 16:8 (12:3, 4:5)

A comprehensive victory from the French roster, securing their placement in the playoffs of the tournament. Kicking off on the CT side, G2 Esports were unable to effectively repel the aggression from SK, conceding the pistol round. In spite of this, the French force buy and manage to snatch round two from the hands of the Brazilians. The opposite was true in round three, where SK snatched the ball back, however not for long. Following this exchange of rounds, G2 Esports started pummelling the offense, securing round after round in what was apparently a dominant performance. Six consecutive rounds were secured by the French prior to conceding a single one, post-which a further five fell in favour of the French, producing an absolutely incredible 12:3 CT side. The second pistol round went in favour  of the defending Brazilians. The team followed up with a consecutive three, at which point the streak was cut short by G2. Grabbing three rounds of their own placed the Frenchmen at a 15-7 score, ever so close to securing their place in the playoffs. Both teams exchange a round, culminating in a 16:8 victory for G2 Esports.

Denmark Astralis vs. Sweden Fnatic - de_Mirage 16:13 (8:7, 8:6)

The final match of the series saw a close encounter between the Danish and Swedish sides. Astralis kicked off on the T side of the map, where they are able to out-aim the Swedes, subsequently securing the pistol round. Through the virtue of a force buy Fnatic are able to grab two consecutive rounds. Despite their streak being cut by Astralis, where the Danes were able to ensure an addition of two to their score, the Swedes went on to grab four consecutive rounds, placing the team at a comfortable 6:3 lead. The lead proved to be short-lived, as Astralis bring themselves back to the top of the round score through five consecutive rounds at the expense of Fnatic. The half concluded with a Fnatic victory, hence an 8:7 lead for Astralis. The latter half saw a successful start from Fnatic, where the Swedes snatched the pistol round and three additional rounds. Next it was Astralis' turn to grab four in their name, placing the score at 12-11. Unfortunately for the Swedes, the opponents were better prepared, meaning a 16:13 finish for the Danish roster.

Image courtesy of StarLadder Flickr


Will we see any of the underdogs enter the playoffs?

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Aleksei “Aleksei.L” Louchnikov
<p>Former CS:GO Section Editorial Lead at GosuGamers.net. Contact - @Aleksei_Lushni/[email protected]</p>


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