Sixteen teams, four quotas, the ESL studio in Cologne, the end of July and HellRaisers – the exposition for this weekend.
What you need to know:
- 16 teams have been divided into 2 groups with 8 teams in each
- Only two quotas for ESL One Cologne are at stack in each group
- The matches will run on July 25 and 26. HR will play all matches on July 26
- All games will run in a best-of-one format, or on one map in other words
- All teams will come to the German city Cologne to play on LAN
- The ESL studio will stream this event. The Russian broadcasting will be provided by Storm Studio
HellRaisers have been intensely preparing for a trip to Germany during two weeks. In the Kiev office of the team there were four players, while Mikhail "Dosia" Stolyarov was in his home Ufa, wherefrom he was taking active part in the training process. Every day the team starts practising at 15:00 and ends in the deep of night. Many players would come even earlier and work on themselves. The coach of our team, lmbt, was especially pleased by Emil KucheR Akhundov's carefulness.
Each of the players is eagerly anxious to get through the qualifier stage. Professionalism and responsibility, the boys came to trainings with, gave them an opportunity to get in good shape and go to Germany as favorites. However, the format of all games is bo1, and that's why the element of randomness is through the roof not only at the map picking stage, but in a game, too. We hope that the fortune will smile upon our team and they will get through the qualifiers without any difficulties.
The path to triumph
To get a sacred quota, HellRaisers have to win three bo1 meetings. Their first rival will be the Norwegians from LGB eSports. In case of defeat, the next rival for HR will be the winner of the eBettle and Epiphany Bolt pair. After the victory in this meetings, our boys will have to compete with one of this four Titan, Gamers2, ROCCAT and k1ck. Not only the winner of the top bracket, but the best team of the lower one will get a quota for ESL One Cologne. The second chance will be provided to every team, which lost only once at the winner matches.
The stunningly visualisable bracket is available in our report.
The seven teams will try to dispute the right of HellRaisers to take part in ESL One Cologne. Among them there are both offenders of our boys and the teams, which have recently updated their roster. The history of each of these fives is below.
The Norwegian team LGB eSports has recently (in May of this year) lost their best player, a statistical and moral leader Håvard "rain" Nygaard. He has decided to join the Kinguin team and is taking part in this qualifier, too, but at the parallel group. The young hope of Norwegian CS:GO, Kristoffer "Mystic" Michelsen, was invited to take the leader's place. The team with an updated roster has been training, playing many online and LAN tournaments, but faced one more problems at the last moment. Due to personal reasons Ruben "Rubino" Villarroel has to miss the German qualifier. We will be the one to found out how it will affect their style and quality of the game, since LGB eSports are the first rivals of HellRaisers.
The favorite of the pair, in which the next rival of our boys is to be determined, is the Polish team eBettle. This team was formerly known as INSHOCK; the five is considered to be the third one by the strength in Poland. The future of the country's stage is playing in this team. They managed to approved themselves in a series of online tournaments, but didn't achieve any serious results. Gamers2 and Virtus.pro kept in the background within the inner stage, but we can't write them off anyway. It's known that these teams have been intensively training and has something to show at the qualifiers.
The dark horse of the qualifiers is the Finnish team Epiphany Bolt. We know a little about these boys: they are supported by the British organization, they visited only the LANs in Finland, but managed to beat such teams as LGB eSports, Phenomenon and nEophyte online. The last acquisition of the roster is Slaava "Twista" Räsänen, who has the experience of taking part in big CS 1.6 tournaments. The team has been working as hard as others, and thus may become a serious problem for any team.
At the second part of the brackets there are a couple of favorites and a couple of outsiders. Although all these divisions are conditional, it's necessary to point out that the Gamers2 – Titan pair seemed to be way stronger than the k1ck – ROCCAT one.
Let's talk about everyone in turns. G2 is the discovery of the last few months. These Poles are especially unpleasant for HellRaisers. At the recent LAN Finals of SLTV StarSeries they turned out to be out of the play-off stage together with HR, but the Poles didn't manage to beat our five. The noblemen, who didn't qualified for the home major tournament in Katowice, having lost to the Russians from PiTER and Americans from CLG, have been intensely preparing during these six months and made only one substitution in their roster: MICHU, one of the most promising players not only in Poland, but all around the world, took the place of rallen. If G2 manage to win Titan, they will be on the highway to the winners bracket finals.
It is a big question though if Titan will become a serious obstacle. The French reshuffle, which caught the CS:GO stage up in a week before the tournament, having left Titans without the stable five, tactics and two best players – the sniper of the world level, Kenny 'kennyS' Schrub, and the very qualitative aimer – Dan "apex" Madesclaire. The ex-players of EnVyUs, the champions of DH Winter 2014, Edouard 'SmithZz' Dubourdeaux and Richard "shox" Papillon, have come to take their places. It's almost impossible to build a good team play during such shot period of time, but their individual skill is good enough to get in victory at this qualifiers.
The history of the next couple of quarterfinalists is quite similar. Both teams made it to Cologne through the online qualifiers, both in a week before the tournament became part of new organizations and do want to approve themselves as good as they are able to at the upcoming LAN tournament. The second representative of Finland is the heritor of the CS:GO Finland leader 3DMAX. When Joona "natu" Leppänen and Taneli "disturbed" Veikkola left the team, the ways of the updated roster and the organization broke away. However, in spite of all difficulties, they managed to become a winner of the first online qualifier, and prior to the LAN in Cologne they have found the support from ROCCAT.
It's known a bit about the strongest Hungarian team, which used to be called as Rock, and since recently they have been dignified by the name of k1ck. Flash and Co. unlikely are considered to be a very strong rival, however, they are definitely able to compete with the top teams. Their performance within the LAN Finals of Gaming Paradise may prove these words. At that tough fight they lost to Kinguin (10:16, 14:16) and Gamers2 (16:6, 12:16, 12:16). These boys have been playing together for a long time and are definitely aimed at the successful trip to Cologne.
The first matches of the tournament will run on this Saturday, July 25. HellRaisers will enter the battleground only in the Sunday morning. You will be able to find all information in our report, which will appear on the website's pages during the day. Subscribe for our push notifications lest you should miss the beginning of the matches.
Cheer for HellRaisers!