Team Secret became the second team to qualify for the playoffs at the ESL One Germany event on Thursday, sweeping Team Liquid to improve to 3-0.
Also on Thursday, Natus Vincere and 5men moved within a win of the playoffs with victories over Winstrike Team and Vikin.gg, respectively.
The $400,000 Dota 2 event began with 16 teams from Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States. It runs through Nov. 1, with the winner earning $150,000.
The teams are competing in a Swiss group stage with five rounds of best-of-three matches. Teams need three victories to secure a spot in the eight-team playoffs, while three losses equal elimination, and teams never play the same opponent twice.
The playoff rounds will be contested in a best-of-three, double-elimination format. The grand final is a best-of-five encounter.
In a meeting of 2-0 teams and with a playoff berth on the line, Secret won in 42 minutes then again in 33 minutes. Finland’s Lasse Aukusti “MATUMBAMAN” Urpalainen led Secret with 25 kills over the two maps and Yazied “YapzOr” Jaradat had 41 combined kills. Michael “m’iCKe” Nguyen of Sweden led Liquid (2-1) with 12 kills over the two maps, while countryman Aydin “iNSaNiA” Sarkohi had 24 total assists in the loss.
Na’Vi had perhaps an easier time with Winstrike, winning in a combined 71 minutes in their sweep. Bogdan “Iceberg” Vasilenko of Ukraine notched 21 kills in the two wins while fellow Ukrainian Andrey “ALWAYSWANNAFLY” Bondarenko had 30 assists. While Na’Vi improved to 2-1, Winstrike fell to 1-2.
The third match — also a meeting of 1-1 teams — was the closest of the day as 5men won the first map in 36 minutes Vikin.gg took the second in 43 minutes and 5men took the decider in 33 minutes.
Sweden’s Rasmus “Chessie” Blomdin led 5men with 28 kills. Miroslav “BOOM” Bican of the Czech Republic had 22 kills to pace Vikin.gg.
Round 4 begins Saturday, with matchups still be set based on standings.
ESL One Germany group-stage standings, with win-loss record:
x-T1. Alliance, 3-0
x-T1. Team Secret, 3-0
T3. 5men, 2-1
T3. OG, 2-1
T3. mudgolems, 2-1
T3. Natus Vincere, 2-1
T3. Team Liquid, 2-1
T3. Yellow Submarine, 2-1
T9. Cyber Legacy, 1-2
T9. HellRaisers, 1-2
T9. Ninjas in Pyjamas, 1-2
T9. Team Nigma, 1-2
T9. Vikin.gg 1-2
T9. Winstrike Team, 1-2
y-T15. Tempo Esports, 0-3
y-T15. EXTREMUM, 0-3
x-clinched playoff spot
–Field Level Media