The review of StarSeries i-League CS:GO Invitational Season 7Lord Matus
The teams, which have disappointed
The European team can’t show good results. After the joining of Dauren 'AdreN' Kystaubayev, the team only prevailed at ELEAGUE CS:GO Invitational 2019, the tournament, in which only four teams participated. They have performed simply well or very bad at the rest of the championships. The championship in the StarSeries series hasn’t become an exception. It has become a failure for the European team. At the group stage, they managed to beat one of the weakest participants of the tournament, paiN Gaming, and Vici gaming. Playing against Renegades and ENCE eSports, FaZe was able to win at least one map in matches and they were not able to show enough resistance in the decisive match against North to prevail at one map. As a result, FaZe was eliminated after the fifth round. The Europeans had a chance to be the top eight and many viewers expected that but NiKo and the company couldn’t realize their desires in the reality and transfers are likely to happen in the team soon.
The Brazilians from MIBR, just like FaZe Clan, have issues with the game and the synergy between the team members leaves much more to be desired. BLAST Pro Series in San Paulo has become the last tournament where MIBR performed before StarSeries. There, Fallen with his team were the favorite but despite this, the team was not able to meet the expectations of fans who visited the event, having performed there with a statistics 0-10. On one hand, it was not worth to expect some kind of a good performance from the Brazilians at the Chinese tournament but this team could not be called an outsider. Considering their current gaming shape, such result by the Brazilians is difficult to be called unexpected but anyway, MIBR have disappointed the majority of viewers with their performance.
The participants, which have performed in accordance with expectations
Panda Gaming is one of the most obvious outsiders of the championship. The team visited the event just to earn experience because the level of the participants was too high to allow Panda to compete with them. Panda has become the first team to be eliminated from the competition, having a statistics 0-3. The Chinese lost the matches to MIBR, TYLOO, and North with a score 0-2. Panda Gaming’s statistics was the worst at the championship and this result should have been expected.
The Brazilians came to the championship together with their former player who left paiN shortly before the start of the tournament. This situation was unlikely to make a positive impact on the team’s morale. Together with a bad gaming shape, this is the reason why paiN Gaming has placed 15th in the standings with a score 0-3. They were not able to show something serious against FaZe Clan and BIG, having lost the match against these teams with a result 0-2. Despite they won one map against Team Spirit, it didn’t help them and the team finished its participation in the championship one of the first. paiN Gaming has already made a replacement on their roster, having taken Arthur ‘f4stzin’ Schmitt in the team instead of departed Maxcel ‘maxcel’ Rocha. Maybe, this will help the team to grow up at the Brazilian CS:GO scene but it’s too early for them to perform at international competitions.
Vici Gaming was eliminated from the tournament in the fourth round, having left viewers with a beautiful show. The main reason is the first match against Natus Vincere. There, zhoking with his teammates managed to beat s1mple and the company with a score 2-1. The tendency to lose the first matches was noticed in Na’Vi a long time ago, however, no one expected such a performance by Vici gaming. In the following matches against FaZe Clan, ENCE eSports, and Ninjas in Pyjamas, the Chinese looked as if they had lost the initial ambition and they were not able to win a map in one of the above-mentioned matches. In such a way, Vici Gaming finished their participation with a score 1-3 but their performance was good. The matches were interesting for the team of such a level and Chinese viewers had their portion of pleasure from watching ViCi.
Just like Vici Gaming, TYLOO had good viewers’ support but despite this, they performed on an unsatisfying level. They held out till the fourth round. The Chinese were defeated with a score 0-2 in the first match against renegades. They managed to win the outsider in the form of Panda Gaming with a score 2-0 and they lost the 3rd and 4th matches with a score 1-2, without being able to beat Team Spirit and BIG. However, the team created a good struggle to the above-mentioned teams and achieved victory on one map. Finally, TYLOO became one of three teams, which were eliminated from the competition in the fourth round together with MIBR and Vici Gaming.
BIG has probably performed even better than they had been expected. They were not able to beat their opponents in the form of Team Vitality and Natus Vincere in the first two matches, having lost with a score 0-2, and they achieved victory with a score 2-0 and 2-1 in the following matches with paiN Gaming and TYLOO. The decisive match in the fifth round was over in the favor of their North American opponents NRG Esports with a score 2-0. The reason for such a bad performance by BIG was a bad team play and communication issues. team’s coach has said that the esportsmen still can’t decide what language the Turkish player XANTARES who has recently joined the team should learn: German or English. A part of the representatives of BIG thinks that he needs to improve his English skills to communicate with the players of BIG well. The other part thinks that the Turk need to learn German to speak with the players of BIG in their mother tongue. We can forget about BIG’s good results at big championships until the team doesn’t resolve this issue, what the representatives of the above-mentioned tag have proved us with their result at StarSeries.
Team Spirit have shown themselves at the championship very well. The team was not able to defeat the Finnish tops from ENCE, having lost the match against them with a score 0-2 but managed to rehabilitate as a result, having won twice in the matches against paiN Gaming and TYLOO. They lost one map to their opponents in both matches but this didn’t stop the CIS team from winning them. In the fourth round, Team Spirit was close to getting to the playoffs but Vitality was stronger than its opponents, so somedieyoung with teammates were beaten with a score 1-2. With regard to the last fifth round, Ninjas in Pyjamas also almost lost the match against the CIS team but, however, the Swedes focused and prevailed in the final match. Team Spirit stayed at the group stage till the very end and was the last one to be eliminated from the competition together with FaZe Clan and BIG, without advancing to the playoffs. It’s worth to notice that the ex-player of Vega Squadron Leonid "chopper" Vishnyakov joined the team right before the tournament and there was a very little time to prepare. But Spirit hasn’t made it to the playoffs and this means that such a result had been predictable enough.
The French team with NBK- have performed at the championship pretty well. The team made it to the final stage with a score 3-1. Team Vitality was not able to defeat only Fnatic in the third round. The French prevailed with a score 2-0, 2-1, and 2-1 in the rest of the matches, which were played against BIG, ENCE eSports, and Team Spirit, respectively. They faced the opponent in the form of NRG Esports. The representatives of North America had prepared for the championship pretty well, due to which defeated Vitality. This victory can’t be called easy, however, due to the efforts made, NRG managed to advance to the semi-final, having left the French on the 5th-8th place in the standings. Vitality has earned a monetary reward in the sum of $15,000 for their efforts. Considering the fact that the general prize pool has amounted $500,000, this prize is not big but it’s better than losing at the group stage and earning from $4,000 to $8,500 for a team.
Ninjas in Pyjamas
Ninjas in Pyjamas have performed at the tournament quite mediocre. They have advanced to the playoffs but considering the level of their opponents, this results can’t be called unexpected. They were beaten in the first and third rounds, playing against Fnatic and Natus Vincere with a score 1-2. In the second, fourth and fifth rounds, facing North, Vici Gaming, and Team Spirit, they won with a score 2-1, 2-0, and 2-1, respectively. It’s worth to notice that they were pretty close to a loss in the fifth round in the match against the Tier-3 CIS team, however, GeT_RiGhT and his teammates managed to make it to the playoff as a result. They played against Renegades in the quarterfinal but they were not ready for the Australian opponents’ gaming shape, due to which were defeated with a score 0-2. This result was pretty predictable and this means that there was no intrigue from NiP’s performance.
ENCE eSports predictably got to the playoffs with an expected result: 3-1. The Finns started at the group stage successfully, having prevailed over Team Spirit with a score 2-0, but as a result, lost the match against Team Vitality in a tough battle with a result 1-2. After that, ENCE eSports managed to rehabilitate and allu with his teammates beat Vici Gaming and FaZe Clan with a score 2-0 and 2-1, respectively. Having reached the final stage, ENCE faced the angry and well-prepared Natus Vincere, which wanted to win a rematch for the lost semi-final of the major tournament. The Finns didn’t give up without a fight and won the first map and created a good struggle for their opponents on the second and third maps but it was not enough to get to the semi-final. Na’Vi were in a too good gaming shape. Finally, ENCE eSports has placed 5th-8th in the standings. At the beginning of the tournament, many viewers expected the Finns to enter the top 4, however, considering the level of their opponents, this result can’t be called disappointing.
Natus Vincere have achieved victory at the championship and this has hardly become a big surprise for someone. Initially, Na’Vi were one of the main favorites of the championship and the odds on their victory were one of the smallest at bookmaker companies. Despite everything was not that smooth for them at the group stage, however, Natus Vincere had gained momentum before getting to the playoffs and beat all their opponents at the final stage. In the very first match of the tournament with Na’Vi, the team lost the match against Vici Gaming a score 1-2 but rehabilitated, having defeated BIG, Ninjas in Pyjamas, and NRG Esports with a score 2-0, 2-1, and 2-0, respectively.
ENCE eSports became the first and the main opponent for Na’Vi at the playoff stage. As it had been said before, the CIS team had enough motivation to beat allu and his teammates because Natus Vincere had previously lost in the semi-final of IEM Katowice Major 2019 in the battle with the Finns. This time, the match between Na’Vi and ENCE eSports was over in the favor of Natus Vincere with a score 2-1. The second match of the playoff stage was also dangerous for Na’Vi because Renegades were in a good gaming shape and had good morale after the victory over Ninjas in Pyjamas. Having lost the second map to their Australian opponents, Na’Vi made quick work on mistakes and managed to finish Renegades, having won the third map with a score 16-4, and advanced to the grand final, waiting for the winner of the match Fnatic vs NRG Esports. As a result, Fnatic was the last obstacle on Na’Vi’s way to the victory, which was overcome without special problems. The format of the match was best-of-5 but three maps were enough for the players from Na’Vi to show who deserved the title of the champion of StarSeries & i-League CS:GO Invitational Season 7. Natus Vincere has become the winners of the seventh season of StarSeries and earned the main money prize in the sum of $250,000. It’s worth to notice that there were no uncomfortable opponents for Na’Vi at the tournament like Astralis and Team Liquid. It would be interesting to see how the CIS team performs at the tournament with the above-mentioned teams. We will find out if the “yellow-black” team reaches a new level or the victory at the tournament was achieved only due to the absence of Astralis and Liquid. The team’s coach Mykhailo ‘kane’ Blagin has stated that the team is in a nice gaming shape the next tournament, in which Na’Vi will participate, will be finished with a victory for Natus Vincere too.
The teams, which have surprised
The representatives of North America might come to the championship with a stand-in because one of the players faced Chinese visa issues. The problem had been finally resolved in one day before the start of the tournament and the esportsman went to the most populated country in the world to divide $500,000 with other participants of the Shanghai tournament. NRG faced problems in the form of Fnatic and Natus Vincere at the group stage. The Americans were not able to resist in the matches with these teams and they lost with a score 0-2. In the matches against North, MIBR, and BIG, daps and his teammates managed to prevail with a result 2-1, 2-0, and 2-0, respectively. In the end, NRG Esports, being in one step from the elimination from the tournament, delayed it for two matches.
Having made it to the playoffs, they had to play with Team Vitality in the match for getting to the semi-final. Making big efforts there, CeRq and the company defeated the French with a score 2-0 and advanced to the semi-final where were waiting for the winner of the match Fnatic vs North. The semi-final of StarSeries Season 7 was the last match for the Americans at this championship. The remarkable fact is that both maps were brought to overtime where the battle was over with a score 19-17 in the favor of Fnatic in both cases. Many viewers had doubts about the success of NRG Esports’ participation. Their performance was not too promising in recent time and there were a lot of strong opponents among the participants of StarSeries #7. Despite this, NRG has reached the 3rd-4th place in the standings and earned a money reward in the sum of $30,000 for their efforts.
The Danish team has performed at the championship well. The team lost two matches against NRG Esports and Ninjas in Pyjamas with a score 1-2 at the group stage but beat the other three opponents in the face of Panda Gaming, MIBR, and FaZe Clan with a score 2-0, as a result. In the quarterfinal, they had to play with the Swedes from Fnatic who had gained a good gaming shape before the tournament. The first two maps were interesting. The first one was over in the favor of North and the second one finished in the favor of Fnatic. The last battle on Inferno was a one-way track because the Swedes achieved victory over Kjaerbye and his teammates with a score 16-1. Due to their efforts, North has earned a money prize in the sum of $15,000. Considering the level of participants, such result from North could surprise and many viewers expected to see another team in the playoffs instead of the Danes, for example, FaZe Clan or MIBR, which North defeated, by the way.
Renegades have shown a great result at the past championship. The team placed second with a score 3-0 and went to the playoffs. At the first stage, the Australians won TYLOO, MIBR, and FaZe Clan with a score 2-0, 2-1, and 2-1, respectively. In the quarterfinal, they faced one of the strongest Swedish teams, Ninjas in Pyjamas. Without a special effort, Renegades beat the last ones with a score 2-0 and made it to the semi-final, waiting for the winner of the match Natus Vincere vs ENCE eSports. Despite Na’Vi defeated the Australians and achieved victory at the tournament, it’s worth to notice that RNG made a good fight and even managed to win the first map. As a result, Renegades have placed 3rd-4th and earned a money prize in the sum of $30,000.
The Swedes from Fnatic have surprised even skeptical viewers who followed JW and the company’s play. The team had been unable to perform on a good level at previous championships, including the Major tournament, and the team was on the bottom of the standings, however, everything has changed at this tournament. At the group stage, Fnatic let everyone know that it’s not worth to mess with them. The team became one of two participants to get to the playoffs with a score 3-1 and their statistics was the best among all sixteen teams. Having faced Ninjas in Pyjamas, NRG Esports, and Team Vitality, the Swedes prevailed over their opponents with a score 2-1, 2-0, and 2-0, respectively.
Having reached the quarterfinal, Fnatic beat North, having destroyed the last ones on the third map and lost only one round to the opponents. The Swedes had to make big efforts in the semi-final because both maps against NRG Esports finished in overtime with a score 19-17. After this, Fnatic went to the final with a motivation to win but it was not enough to beat Natus Vincere. The last ones were in a nice gaming shape and all players were performing on a highly individual level. Despite this, it seems that Fnatic has found the way to stop its bad streak and we can expect such performances from them at other tournaments. The Swedes have earned a money reward in the sum of $80,000 for the second place.