Team Spirit and Natus Vincere moved forward in the middle bracket of Group D on Friday at the ESL Pro League Season 17 in Saint Julian’s, Malta.
Spirit swept Team Liquid 2-0 and NaVi rallied for a 2-1 victory over Rare Atom. They will battle for third place in the mid-bracket final Saturday.
Liquid and Rare Atom dropped into the lower bracket and will face off in a do-or-die semifinal Saturday.
The $850,000 Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament began on Feb. 22 with 32 teams divided into four groups for the triple-elimination opening round.
The group-stage winners move into the quarterfinals, with the group runners-up heading to the Round of 12 as high seeds. The four third-place teams enter in the Round of 16 as high seeds, and the four fourth-place teams go to the Round of 16 as low seeds.
The tournament champion will receive $200,000 plus berths in the Intel Extreme Masters Cologne this summer and the BLAST Premier World Final in December.
Spirit beat Liquid 16-10 on Nuke and 16-13 on Mirage. Igor “w0nderful” Zhdanov of Ukraine led all players with 46 kills and a plus-22 kills-to-deaths differential for Spirit.
Rare Atom notched a 19-17 overtime win on Inferno before NaVi evened the match with a runaway 16-4 win on Nuke. The final map was Overpass, where NaVi was victorious 16-7. Four players had double-digit K-D differentials for NaVi, with Russia’s Denis “electroNic” Sharipov (67 kills, plus-25) and Ukraine’s Valeriy “b1t” Vakhovskiy (65 kills, plus-28) leading the way.
Group A play finished on Feb. 26 with Cloud9 coming in first, Outsiders in second, G2 Esports in third and Fnatic in fourth. Group B action ended on March 5 with Heroic in first, followed by MOUZ, FURIA Esports and Movistar Riders. In Group C, which concluded Sunday, the top four, in order, were Team Vitality, FaZe Clan, paiN Gaming and 00 Nation.
Group D play continues on Saturday with three matches:
–Team Spirit vs. Natus Vincere (mid-bracket final)
–ATK vs. Astralis (lower-bracket quarterfinal)
–Team Liquid vs. Rare Atom (lower-bracket semifinal)
ESL Pro League Season 17 prize pool and points distribution:
1. $200,000, 3,000 BLAST Premier points, qualification for Intel Extreme Masters Cologne and BLAST Premier World Final
2. $90,000, 2,000 BLAST Premier points
3-4. $50,000, 1,200 BLAST Premier points
5-8. $35,000, 500 BLAST Premier points
17-20. $15,000 — Eternal Fire, BIG, Ninjas in Pyjamas
21-28. $8,000 — MIBR, IHC Esports, SAW, Complexity Gaming, OG, Grayhound Gaming
29-32. $4,000 — Evil Geniuses, Imperial Esports, Rooster
–Field Level Media