ENCE, Astralis, NiP win Rio to Rio – Europe openers

ENCE, Astralis and Ninjas in Pyjamas posted wins Wednesday as the ESL One: Road to Rio – Europe event began.

In Group A action, ENCE posted a 2-0 win over Fnatic. Astralis edged Complexity Gaming 2-1, and NiP came from behind to top Team Vitality 2-1.

ESL One: Rio Major, a $2 million Counter-Strike: Global Offensive event, was originally scheduled to be held May 11-24 in Rio de Janeiro, but it was pushed back to Nov. 9-22 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The regional qualifying events for Europe, North America and South America were all set to start Wednesday. Play in the Commonwealth of Independent States region will begin April 30, with the Asia and Oceania regions kicking off May 6.

The teams are competing for a total of $255,000 in the online tournaments, as well as for Regional Major Ranking points to be applied toward berths at the ESL One: Rio Major.

The European event has 16 teams divided into two groups for round-robin play consisting of best-of-three matches. The top two finishers from each group advance to the upper bracket of a double-elimination playoff, with the third- and fourth-place finishers advancing to the playoff’s lower bracket.

All playoff matches are best-of-three prior to the grand final. The title match will be best-of-five, with the team emerging from the upper bracket starting with a one-map advantage.

The European champion will receive 500 Pro Tour points and 1,600 Regional Major Rankings points, plus an as-yet-unannounced share of the $115,000 prize pool. The runner-up will get 350 Pro Tour points and 1,500 RMR points.

Action began Wednesday with Astralis earning a 16-4 win on Vertigo, but Complexity rebounded to claim Nuke 16-13. Astralis then won the deciding map, Train, 16-11.

ENCE prevailed in two tight maps against Fnatic, 16-14 on Dust II and 16-13 on Mirage.

Vitality opened with a 16-14 triumph on Overpass. NiP rallied to capture Nuke 16-12 and Inferno 16-4.

Two Group A squads were idle Wednesday: Dignitas and Team Heretics. Those two teams square off on Thursday.

Group B play starts Thursday with FaZe Clan opposing North before GODSENT face G2 Esports. Also in Group B are mousesports, c0ntact Gaming, Movistar Riders and Copenhagen Flames.

ESL One: Road to Rio – Europe standings, with win-loss record and map differential
Group A
T1. Astralis, 1-0, +14
T1. Ninjas in Pyjamas, 1-0, +14
T1. ENCE, 1-0, +5
T4. Dignitas, 0-0, even
T4. Team Heretics, 0-0, even
T6. Fnatic, 0-1, -5
T6. Complexity Gaming, 0-1, -14
T6. Team Vitality, 0-1, -14
Group B
T1. mousesports, 0-0, even
T1. G2 Esports, 0-0, even
T1. FaZe Clan, 0-0, even
T1. North, 0-0, even
T1. GODSENT, 0-0, even
T1. c0ntact Gaming, 0-0, even
T1. Movistar Riders, 0-0, even
T1. Copenhagen Flames, 0-0, even

–Field Level Media

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