Esports Tournament Reviews and Previews – Jan. 17, 2019

chongqing major

Last week, we previewed the Bucharest Minor event for Dota 2 teams, with just one place left in the Chongqing Major for the winner. Thus, our review of the week’s biggest esports events will start with the Romania results.

Dota 2 – Bucharest Minor results

With eight teams in the mix, including the winners of The International 2018, OG, the competition was tough for the final qualifying spot at Chongqing. That is exactly how the Bucharest Minor panned out.

Qualifying from Group A, Gambit Esports won their opening two games comfortably to earn the top spot in the group. Then, in the Upper Bracket, they defeated OG by a clinical 2-0 scoreline. However, they were then beaten by the other outstanding team in the event, EHOME, in the Upper Bracket Final.

Gambit then defeated Keen Gaming in the Lower Bracket Final to earn another shot at EHOME (who had won Group B in convincing fashion before eliminating Keen Gaming in the Upper Bracket first round). But in the final, China’s EHOME triumphed once again. They earned a 3-1 victory and the coveted Chongqing spot.

Dota 2 – Chongqing Major Preview

The second StarLadder Major of the 2018-19 season and the first in 2019, will be contested at the BLOOMAGE Cultural and Sports Center in Chongqing, China from Jan. 19-27. Once again, a prize pool of $1,000,000 is up for grabs. Also, a massive 15,000 Dota Pro Circuit Points will be available. The winning team takes home 4,950 DPC points and a cash prize of $350,000.

EHOME join 15 other teams who have been divided into the four groups:

  • Group A – Virtus.pro, TNC Predator, Chaos Esports Club, EHOME
  • Group B – Team Secret, PSG.LGD, Forward Gaming, Thunder Predator
  • Group C – Team Liquid, Vici Gaming, J.Storm, The Pango
  • Group D – Evil Geniuses, Fnatic, Alliance, Team Aster

The two top seeds in each group enter the Upper Bracket. Then, the two lower seeds enter the Lower Bracket. The playoffs then continue as standard until the best-of-five final takes place on Jan. 27.

Current betting this could be one of the most open events in recent times. Team Secret and Virtus.pro are the joint favorites at 4/1. PSG.LGD has a 5/1 chance, and Team Liquid and Vici Gaming are both 6/1 shots. Evil Geniuses and Bucharest Minor qualifiers EHOME are both 10/1 shots. Finally, Fnatic is 12/1.

Current Dota Pro Circuit Rankings

Before the Chongqing action starts Jan. 19, let’s recap the DPC standings.

  1. pro – 4950
  2. Team Secret – 3000
  3. Evil Geniuses – 2100
  4. Ninjas in Pyjamas – 1420
  5. LGD – 900
  6. TNC Predator – 720
  7. Fnatic – 450
  8. Vici Gaming – 450
  9. Alliance – 150
  10. Foreward Gaming – 150
  11. Gambit Esports – 148
  12. EHOME – 120
  13. Storm – 120
  14. Test123 – 120
  15. Tigers – 120
  16. Natus Vincere – 100
  17. Keen Gaming – 90
  18. Chaos Esports Club – 75
  19. Team Aster – 75
  20. Infamous – 44.8

League of Legends – Spring qualifiers get underway

This week sees the start of many League of Legends spring qualifiers. The Chinese LPL qualifier started on Jan. 14 while the LCK in Korea started Jan. 16. The new LEC in Europe starts Jan. 17 while the LCS Spring 2019 qualifier for North America starts a week later, Jan. 26.

The qualifiers will see the winning team qualify for the Mid Season Invitational. The top six teams earn League of Legends World Championship qualification points, which they will then carry forward into the summer qualifiers.

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The teams taking part are as follows:

  • LCS (North America) – 100 Thieves, Cloud9, Clutch Gaming, Counter Logic Gaming, Echo Fox, FlyQuest, Golden Guardians, OpTic Gaming, Team Liquid, Team SoloMid
  • LEC (Europe) – exceL Esports, FC Schalke 04 Esports, Fnatic, G2 Esports, Misfits Gaming, Origen, Rogue, SK Gaming, Splyce, Team Vitality
  • LPL (China) – Bilibili Gaming, EDward Gaming, FunPlus Phoenix, Invictus Gaming, JD Gaming, LGD Gaming, Oh My God, Rogue Warriors, Royal Never Give Up, SinoDragon Club, Snake Esports, Suning, Team WE, Topsports Gaming, Vici Gaming, Victory Five
  • LCK (Korea) – Afreeca Freecs, Gen.G, Griffin, Hanwha Life Esports, Jin Air Green Wings, KING-ZONE DragonX, KT Rolstere, SK Telecom T1, DAMWON Gaming, SANDBOX Gaming

The qualifying tournaments consist of a group stage, followed by a playoff stage and will last for several months from mid-January through various dates in April.

FIFA 2019 – The Virtual Bundesliga begins in Germany

A total of 22 teams from the top two leagues in German football, 13 from the Bundesliga and nine from Bundesliga II, will contest the first Virtual Bundesliga (VBL) Club Championship.

Many German football teams, such as Schalke 04, Red Bull Leipzig, and Werder Bremen, have had their own esports teams for years. Others, such as giants Bayern Munich, have resisted the move into esports, which is why the first league contains nine teams from the lower division in German football to complete the numbers.

The tournament will see two representatives represent each of the 22 teams, one playing on Xbox and one on PS4. Each team will play the other team in the league once with the top six teams qualifying for the end of season playoffs. The best two from the playoffs compete in the VBL Grand Final in March.

The first games got underway on Jan. 16, and the 22 teams competing each has a squad of players to pick from although the two players to represent that team must be named 48 hours prior to the fixture beginning.

The 22 teams are as follows:

  • Bundesliga (13) – FC Augsburg, Hertha Berlin, Werder Bremen, Eintracht Frankfurt, Hannover 96, Red Bull Leipzig, Bayer Leverkusen, FSV Mainz, Borussia Moenchengladbach, Nuremberg, Schalke 04, VfB Stuttgart and VfL Wolfsburg
  • Bundesliga II (9) – Arminia Bielefeld, Vfl Bochum, SV Darmstadt, Greuther Furth, SV Hamburg, Ingolstadt, Holstein Kiel, FC Cologne, Sandhausen

A similar tournament for the Premier League is due to start in early 2019, and there are a number of other domestic based tournaments now starting to take shape for FIFA gamers all around the world, including in Australia, the United States, and Switzerland.

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Chance Solem-Pfeifer is an esports journalist and lead editor at esportsbets.com. From Portland, Oregon.

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