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ELEAGUE: Highlights of the first season

One of the most spectacular events in the history of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has come to an end: the first season of ELEAGUE is officially finished. During a few months we’ve been witnessing a tough battle for a prize pool of $1,400,000 between twenty four teams from all over the world. It’s worth noting that each match was carried out in the offline-mode, so the participating teams had to visit Atlanta for a few times.

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The championship’s organizers did their job on a great level, presenting an entertaining event to the e-sportsmen and the usual fans of CS:GO, which will surely be memorized.  A positive feedback of the players and audience, as well as the high rates of the stream of matches on the local TV – are the sure evidence of the Turner Sports’ and WME|IMG’s success.

There were a lot of interesting occurrences during the first season of ELEAGUE. To start with, SK Gaming (the champions of ESL One Cologne 2016) were disqualified for the rules’ violation, thus being excluded from the Playoffs’ participants. Following the same reason, Team-X (former SK), lost their chance to fight within the frames of Last Chance Qualifier. Besides, the outcome of the matches was quite unexpected, so the name of the team-triumphant wasn’t obvious up to the last day of the tournament. So what is the reason for ELEAGUE S1 to be widely discussed by the worldwide e-sports community for a long time in the future?

Virtus.Pro is back

The roster with the longest history on the CS:GO-stage goes on wearing down their «need to make some replacements», gaining the upper hand on the yet another big tournament. The Polish team has passed a long and thorny way to the desired championship-status, having shown the best game-level by each of the players. The gaming shape of the line-up of Virtus.Pro is almost on its: the triumph at SL i-League CS:GO Invitational, «top-4» ESL One Cologne 2016 and now – the first place at ELEAGUE.

Frankly speaking, hardly anybody had expected such kind of performance from the Poles. Since the beginning of 2016, the squad had been facing huge unsolvable. The tension among the team had been rising, so VP were one pace away from the changes in their roster. However, fortunately for the guys from Virtus.Pro, they’ve eventually dealt with the task, having regained the former glory, and, thanks to the hard trainings, they are fully able to overpower the best CS:GO-squads.

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Virtus.Pro have received the champions' trophy

The Polish five has started their performance from Group F, where they were accompanied by EnVyUs, Gambit Gaming and compLexity. However, Virtus.Pro had failed to secure the ticket to thePlayoffs, losing out to the Frenchmen from EnVyUs in the final clash of the group stage. The Poles were given the second chance in the Last Chance Qualifier, using it completely. VP have coped with the onslaught of Gambit Gaming and Renegades, thus gaining the so-desired slot for the participation in the decisive tournament’s stage.

Thus, the next time we’ve witnessed the high-class game of the Polish squad already in the Quarter-finals of ELEAGUE. There we had an opportunity to witness «El Clasico», as Virtus.Pro had to fight against NiP. Nevertheless, the Swedes have failed to show a decent performance, so VP have eventually overpowered one of the strongest opponents. In the semi-final match, the Poles had to face mousesports and, like in the previous game, they’ve effortlessly secured the victory on the both maps.

And then Virtus.Pro had to deal with the last, and the most serious opponent — fnatic. However, the team of Olof «olofmeister» Kajbjer has failed to stop the Polish squad on their way to a victory and the grand-final «BO3-series» also lasted only for two maps. So what really does the triumph of VP mean? The Polish team gave yet more proof that it’s hardly a high time to not consider them a decent rival. Wiktor «TaZ» Wojtas and his line-up are gradually picking up steam, so we will probably see VP as the champions in 2016 again.

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Will VP keep the same pace?

Such a high-class game of the same one roster, which hasn’t been making any sort of replacements for a few years already, is really inspiring wonder. It’s hard to guess how long the tide of events will be the same. But there is one thing we can be completely sure about— VP are the main contenders to replace the Brazilians from SK on the first place of the ranking of the best CS:GO-teams. fnatic and Na’Vi are not currently able to compete with the champions of the by-past Major, however the Poles can. We hope that Virtus.Pro won’t fall short of our dreams, fixing heir problems in the online-performances, so that we would be able to admire their victories not only at the LAN-tournaments.

Before ELEAGUE S2 kicks off

As the organizers are fully satisfied with the income and rates of the stream of the matches, we are awaited by the second season of the tournament in Atlanta. According to the introductory information, Turner Sports have approved the following facts:

  • the number of the participants of ELEAGUE S2 will be reduced from 24 to 16 teams;
  • the duration of the tournament will be reduced, comparing to the first season;
  • the organizers have refuse to change the other discipline, so we’ll see only matches of CS:GO  at ELEAGUE S2;
  • SK Gaming will be allowed to participate in the second season of the championship.

We’d like to remind you that within ELEAGUE S1 was played the prize pool of $1,400,000. So now, when we’ve learned all the winners’ names, we can see the amount of money, each team has managed to earn in the tournament’s confines:

1st place:  Virtus.Pro — $390,000 2nd place:  fnatic — $140,000 3-4th places:  mousesports and  Natus Vincere — $60,000 5-8th places:  Cloud9,  Astralis,  EnVyUs and  NiP — $50,000 9-10th places:  FaZe Clan and  Renegades — $40,000 11-14th places:  G2,  FlipSid3,  Gambit Gaming and  CLG — $40,000 15-16th places:  OpTic Gaming and  dignitas — $30,000 17-22th places:  Selfless,  Echo Fox,  TSM,  NRG,  compLexity and  Team Liquid — $30,000 23-24th places:  SK and  Team-X — $30,000
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