NiP, Heretics, FaZe stay perfect at Road to Rio – Europe

Ninjas in Pyjamas, Team Heretics and FaZe Clan each survived tough tests on Tuesday to remain perfect through three matches of group play as Week 2 of ESL One: Road to Rio — Europe kicked off.

NiP fought off ENCE for a 2-1 victory in a match that included three overtimes, while Heretics needed a double-overtime victory on the final map to beat winless Complexity Gaming 2-1. FaZe rallied past previously unbeaten Movistar Riders 2-1.

All three teams improved to 3-0, with NiP and Heretics leading Group A, and FaZe atop Group B. Two of those teams get a short break, with NiP next playing Thursday, and FaZe off until Friday.

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 started last Wednesday. Play in the Commonwealth of Independent States region will begin Thursday, 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.

NiP opened with a double-overtime, 22-19 victory over ENCE on Train, then dropped Overpass 19-17 after a single overtime. They recovered for a comfortable finish on the final map, winning Inferno 16-5.

Heretics opened with a 16-7 victory on Nuke but dropped Mirage 16-14, and then fell behind 7-0 on Dust II in the final map. They quickly charged back, however, ultimately surviving two overtimes for a 22-18 map win to claim the match.

Movistar Riders jumped out on FaZe with a 16-9 victory on Overpass, but FaZe stabilized quickly. They dominated the second half of each of the final two maps, taking Mirage 16-9 and Inferno 16-7.

In other Group A action, Dignitas rallied past Fnatic in a wild 2-1 match, dropping Train 19-17 in overtime, winning Overpass 25-22 in triple overtime and holding on to win Dust II 16-14. Astralis easily swept Team Vitality, 16-7 on Dust II and 16-5 on Nuke.

In Group B’s other match, GODSENT rallied past Copenhagen Flames, dropping Inferno 16-13 but taking Dust II 16-8 and Nuke 16-14.

Action continues with three matches in each group on Wednesday:
Group A
Dignitas vs. Team Vitality
ENCE vs. Complexity Gaming
Fnatic vs. Team Heretics
Group B
Copenhagen Flames vs. G2 Esports
North vs. GODSENT
c0ntact Gaming vs. mousesports

ESL One: Road to Rio — Europe standings, with win-loss record and map differential (through Sunday):
Group A
T1. Ninjas in Pyjamas, 3-0, +45
T1. Team Heretics, 3-0, +36
3. Astralis, 2-1, +26
T4. Fnatic, 1-2, even
T4. Team Vitality, 1-2, -16
T4. Dignitas, 1-2, -20
T4. ENCE, 1-2, -28
8. Complexity Gaming, 0-3, -43
Group B
1. FaZe Clan, 3-0, +22
2. Movistar Riders, 2-1, -6
T3. G2 Esports, 1-1, +8
T3. Copenhagen Flames, 1-1, +4
T3. North, 1-1, -1
T3. GODSENT, 1-1, -7
T7. c0ntact Gaming, 0-2, -8
T7. mousesports, 0-2, -12

–Field Level Media

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