Esports can be a tricky arena for bookmakers to make correct predictions. However, fair play to Bet365 Sport, which called the winner of the Kiev Major 2017 absolutely bang on the money last week.
Their 4/1 favorites, OG, battled their way through an incredibly exciting event to take the massive top prize of over $1,000,000 from the $3,000,000 prize pool. Let’s take a closer look at how they achieved this memorable win.
OG’s run to the title
As an invited team, OG were one of the top seeds heading into the event. They opened their campaign with a 2-1 victory over SG e-sports. However, they were stunned by a 2-0 loss in their next game against Invictus Gaming.
OG then battled through a 2-1 win against Team Random to earn a place in the 2-1 Round, and here they claimed the fifth spot in the league table (with a 6-5 games record) with a 2-1 victory over Thunderbirds. That meant in the Round of 16, OG would face Team Random once again.
The best-of-three match saw OG take the lead, winning the first map after an epic 48-minute battle. But Team Random struck back to win the second, only for OG to power home their advantage in the third and deciding leg. That win put OG into the quarterfinals where Team Faceless waited.
Things didn’t look great for OG early on; Team Faceless won the first game in just 27 minutes. But they showed steely resolve to take the second match, and then in an exciting decider clinched the win after 42 minutes of epic battling.
In the semifinal, Evil Geniuses waited, but OG proved too strong, winning the matchup relatively comfortably 2-0. This put them in the final against the second seeded Virtus.pro.
The best-of-five final proved to be worth the prize money. After an intense opening game, OG grabbed the initiative, winning the first map in 49 minutes. However, Virtus.pro showed their metal to win both the second and third maps and claim a 2-1 lead and put themselves on the brink of victory.
However, as they had shown previously in the tournament, OG were not dead and buried just yet. They played superbly in the fourth game to clinch victory and level the scores at 2-2, forcing an epic deciding contest that lasted just short of an hour. OG eventually took the win by a 3-2 scoreline.
OG captain Fly was named the Player of the Tournament, and this victory means OG should be one of the teams to receive a direct invite into the massive International 2017 event, which takes place this August in Seattle.
Gambit Esports Bounce Back To Win DreamHack Austin 2017
After failing to secure the win at the CS Summit event in Los Angeles the previous weekend, Gambit Esports (along with Team Liquid and Cloud9) made the journey south to Austin, Texas, to compete in the DreamHack Austin 2017 event.
Starting the event as a 15/2 chance with Bet365, Gambit Esports showed their class straight away. In an epic battle against Heroic (who would go on to qualify second behind Gambit from the group), Gambit Esports dug in to score an epic 25-23 victory.
That put Gambit a the match against HellRaisers, and they once again showed their quality, coming through 16-7. Heroic then went on to defeat Luminosity Gaming and HellRaisers 2-0 in best-of-three matches to claim the second spot in the group table.
Despite that, the smart money was on the winner coming from Group B with G2 Esports the favorites to win the competition before the action kicked off. There was a shock in their opening game however, as G2 were defeated 16/10 by Cloud 9. Immortals then beat Cloud 9 in the top-seed-deciding match, and G2 Esports managed to get the second spot defeating both Team Liquid and gaining revenge over Cloud9.
That meant that Gambit Esports would take on tournament favorites G2 Esports in the second semifinal, with Immortals facing Heroic in the first. Immortals progressed from this matchup with a 2-1 victory. Gambit Esports once again caused an upset, handing G2 Esports their second defeat of the tournament and sending the favorites out with a superb 2-1 victory.
Of the two finalists, it was Immortals who had enjoyed the better record in the qualifying stages, but Gambit Esports were in fine form. Gambit won the first map (Train) 16-12, and then repeated on the second map (Inferno) to claim the victory and the $50,000 top prize.
The next DreamHack event takes place in Tours at the end of this week. Gambit Esports will be there as one of the invited teams to try and win once again. G2 Esports and Heroic will also be there as an invited team. HellRaisers have earned a place at Tours as the European Qualifier.
These four teams will be joined by Team EnVyUs, mousesports, Natus Vincere, and Misfits as they battle once again for a $50,000 first prize.