M80 are front runners at Thunderpick World Cup NA Qualifiers

Published: May 19, 2024

M80 are the favorites to secure the single Thunderpick World Cup main event spot up for grabs in the North American Qualifiers. Much like the South American Thunderpick WC qualifiers, 16 teams will battle through a single elimination bracket to determine, who takes home the $25,000 main prize and most importantly a spot at the Thunderpick WC main event group stage in October later this year.

The competition in this tournament is more evenly matched than the South American one. It will be much harder to predict who goes through to the Grand Final from each side of the bracket.

M80 CS2
Image: M80

M80 in the driver’s seat

Even though the field is more competitive, there still is a clear favorite that should make quick work of the opposition and book themselves a ticket to the main tournament, and that team is M80.

The fusion of North American and German talent is working wonders for M80 so far, with the squad continuously improving and beginning to be a realistic threat to European competition, as evidenced by their impressive run at ESL Pro League Season 19.

In NA, M80 is extremely dominant, especially in the last month or so, having not lost a single map in their most recent ESL Challenger League Season 47 North America stretch of games. When Liquid and Complexity are on the other side of the world competing in tier-one events, M80 is the team to beat and that’s the exact situation in this tournament.

Potential Dark Horses

While M80 should have this tournament in the bag, providing they play to their full potential, there are a couple of teams that could surprise and make an underdog run all the way to the Thunderpick World Cup main event – the first one being Legacy.

Despite being a full Brazilian team, Legacy somehow made their way into the North American qualifier and has a realistic chance of going through. They are the only team in this bracket to have qualified for the PGL CS2 Major Copenhagen, and they even beat M80 in the Americas RMR to do so.

However, they’ve gone through multiple roster changes since then and are currently without a permanent fifth. The only way they are the last team standing is if the duo of Eduardo “dumau” Wolkmer and Bruno “latto” Rebelatto po off and carry their teammates to victory.

The second team that could do some damage is NRG, who are currently on a 10-match win streak and are in the best shape since the legendary organization’s return to Counter-Strike. While NRG’s CS2 run has been full of disappointments thus far, qualifying for a big international event might give them the confidence they need to get on the right track and find consistency in their play.

Especially considering they are yet to play a tournament across the pond in 2024, which certainly slowed down their progress and curbed their enthusiasm for the project. An upset run in this qualifier would be the perfect catalyst for the team’s success going forward.

Read next: Thunderpick World Championship 2024 Event Guide
Bruno Sobieraj

Since: September 16, 2023

My name is Bruno and my love for Counter-Strike was sparked when the Polish Virtus.pro was plowing through opponents from 2014 to 2018. Since then, I’ve been dreaming of working in esports and here I am.

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