DC Captains Draft Invitational: VP, Secret, Tinker and Na'Vi survive
The battle for the final spot in the playoffs of XMG CD Invitational turned into a thriller, with the fate of EG, PR and Na'Vi being decided in the final game of the groupstage. In the end, Na'Vi took down PR with a 2-0 score to secure the fourth spot and the ticket to playoffs.
The group stages of the DC Captains Draft Invitational have come to a conclusion and only the top four teams will enter the playoffs and the race for the grand prize. Set to begin on December 19th and conclude on the 21st, Virtus Pro, Secret Team, Team Tinker and Natus Vincere must compete in a single elimination bracket with best-of-five matches. Because of their first place, Virtus Pro gets to choose whether they wish to face the third or the fourth placed team, indirectly selecting Secret's opponent. They leave behind Evil Geniuses, 4 Anchors, Alliance and Power Rangers to settle for a small percentage of the $260,000 prizepool.
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the tournament so far has been Virtus Pro and their domination of the group stage. Technically undefeated with a massive twelve points out of a possible fourteen, the Russian team only dropped points to Evil Geniuses and Team Tinker for a draw in their best-of-two series. Instrumental to their success has been Stanislav '633' Glushan, with a combined KDA record of 5.26 over their fourteen games, the highest from any player in the tournament so far.
After dropping two points to Natus Vincere in their match, Evil Geniuses were always going to have difficulty qualifying for the playoffs. A poor groupstage saw them racking up five draws and entered their final game without a single victory. A sixth draw against Team Tinker meant that retaining fourth place was impossible, with Natus Vincere and Power Rangers poised to overtake the American team. Following a loss to Virtus Pro for Natus Vincere, it took until the final game of the stage to discover who would replace Evil Geniuses, and a dominant performance by Natus Vincere against PR secured the spot.
Finnish team 4 Anchors had an opportunity for the ultimate comeback depending on how the results panned out. The team led by former Fnatic member Kalle 'Trixi' Saarinen entered the tournament late after Fnatic pulled out due to roster issues following their first game. This put 4 Anchors at a disadvantage but entering the final week with only a single point and building on their good form from the DreamLeague Season 2 group stages, the team battled to claim victories against Power Rangers and Team Tinker. But a loss to the leader Virtus Pro kept them from reaching seven points that would have equaled Natus Vincere's run.
The late charge for the mid-table by 4 Anchors meant Alliance crashed to the bottom of the groupstage for the second tournament in a row, after meeting the same fate in DreamLeague Season 2. They were only able to pick up a single win against 4 Anchors, with four shut-out losses meant they only picked up four points from an available fourteen. Power Rangers will probably be content from the tournament after a win against Alliance and draws against Team Tinker and Evil Geniuses will leave them something to build on.
For more information about the tournament and the playoff stages that will begin in December click here.