There are four Minor Championships offering a route into the Offline Qualifier. The first of these, the Asian Minor Championship, was played last weekend in China. Two more are slated for this weekend in the Americas and CIS regions, while a week later the European teams will get their chance.
Asian Minor Championship
The action unfolded at the Dongyi Tianhong Studio Hall in Beijing, and it proved to be a high quality event with two deserving teams earning the qualifying spots.
The group stage saw Flash Gaming and TyLoo top their groups. However, in the semifinals, there were two surprise results as Flash Gaming went down 2-0 to Team Immunity and then TyLoo lost 2-1 to Renegades.
That left both top seeds in the Lower Bracket Final. TyLoo came through 2-0 against Flash Gaming, eliminating them from the event. In the Upper Bracket Final, Renegades won a real battle with Team Immunity 2-1 to claim the Grand Final spot.
That gave Team Immunity a chance to avenge their defeat to TyLoo in the group stages. But in the Consolidation Final, TyLoo once again proved their mettle to claim that second spot in the Grand Final, and more importantly the crucial Krakow 2017 Offline Qualifier berth.
The final was an absolute thriller with TyLoo winning the opening game 16-13 on Mirage, before Renegades bounced back to take Cache 16-11. The teams were very well matched, and that resulted in an enthralling third and deciding match (on Cobblestone) that ebbed and flowed before Renegades claimed a narrow 19-17 win.
The win left Renegades taking the top prize of $30,000 and the other qualifying spot.
Americas and CIS Minor Championships
From June 8-11, the Esports Arena in Santa Ana will play host to the Americas Minor Championship.
Two places in the Krakow 2017 Offline Qualifier are up for grabs, along with a $30,000 top prize for the winner and $15,000 for the runner-up.
The teams have been drawn into two groups:
- Group A – compLexity Gaming, Immortals, Luminosity Gaming, NRG Esports
- Group B – Counter Logic Gaming, Cloud9, Misfits, pain Gaming
The top two seeds in each group will qualify for the semifinals. The semis losers (and the Upper Bracket Final loser) then go through the Lower Bracket for a place in the Grand Final against the team that comes through the Upper Bracket undefeated.
The structure and the prize money, plus two places in the Krakow 2017 Offline Qualifier, are exactly the same for the CIS Qualifier.
The teams in the CIS Qualifier are:
- Group A – Team Spirit Academy, Tengri, Nemiga Gaming, Vega Squadron
- Group B – Team Spirit, Spartak Esports, Quantum Bellator Fire, pro100
It is worth keeping your eyes peeled over the weekend for any esports betting markets available for the Americas and CIS events at Bet365.
Europe Minor Championship
There’s a notable difference with the Europe Minor Championship, which takes place in Bucharest next weekend.
While the format and prize money are the same, due to the high quality of teams in the European qualifier, there are three places in the Krakow 2017 Offline Qualifier up for grabs.
The teams have not yet been drawn into groups, but the eight participating teams are:
- Team EnVyUs
- PENTA Sports
- Team LDLC.com
- Team Dignitas
- Fnatic Academy
- Team Kinguin
Bet365 is currently offering the following odds on each of the eight teams winning the event outright: Team EnVyUs are the 5/2 favourites, ahead of PENTA Esports and BIG at 7/2. Team Dignitas are 6/1 shots, with LDLC and Kinguin both 15/2 chances. The outsiders are iGame.com at 9/1 and Fnatic Academy at 14/1.
Esports Championship Series Season 3 reaches final week of qualifying
Another massive CS:GO event happening this week is the final week of qualifying in the North American and European Esports Championship Series Season 3.
With just one week of fixtures to go in both qualifying events, and places in the ECS Season 3 Finals on offer for the top four teams, it promises to be a hugely important week.
ECS Season 3 European League
At the time of this writing, three teams have already qualified for the European section’s finals. Faze Clan (12-2), Astralis (12-6), and Fnatic (11-7) have secured those spots. The final spot is set to be decided between G2 Esports (9-5) and Ninjas in Pyjamas (8-8).
While both G2 and Ninjas have secured their places in Season 4 of this event, three teams GODSENT (5-11), Virtus.pro (5-11), and Team Dignitas (4-12) are battling to avoid facing a Promotion Playoff to retain their place in this elite league. The bottom two teams in the rankings must face teams from the development league for their spots.
ECS Season 3 North American League
With the time difference, the final games in the North American League are taking place at the time of this writing. Cloud9 (13-5), SK Gaming (13-5), and OpTic Gaming (11-7) have secured spots in the finals. It looks very much like Team Liquid (10-6) will join them if they can win just one of their two remaining matches.
With a 1-15 record, Ghost Gaming were condemned to the Promotion Playoffs some time ago, and they look likely to be joined by Luminosity Gaming (5-11). That would mean Immortals, Counter Logic Gaming, NRG Esports, and Renegades would confirm their place in this competition again next season.
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