Quarter Finals IEM Katowice: ENCE Upset Team Liquid, Astralis defeated NiP.

ENCE Upset Team Liquid, Astralis defeated NiP [IEM Katowice]
Image source: IEM Twitter

The Quarter finals of IEM Katowice Champions Stage are over, and we got names of the Semi-finalists. NaVi overcame FaZe, ENCE shocked Team Liquid, Astralis and MiBR defeated NiP and Renegades. Read the Quarter-finals report.

The dominance of T-side on Inferno, NaVi prevailed

Natus Vincere stepped up first against FaZe’s pick, winning both the pistol and second round on CT side. flamie opened the match with the unbelievable Ace clutch in the pistol round. That’s not something that you can see regularly in pro events. It was a nice and well-prepared B site rush from FaZe Clan. Nevertheless, flamie found his way to overtake B site from NiKo and company achieving first of two pistol aces.

FaZe quickly came back and went on 10-3. Olofmeister’s quad-kill in fifth round helped FaZe gain momentum. NaVi managed to take the last two rounds in the first half and that was a hint of their comeback. In the second pistol round, we saw an identical situation on B bombsite with reversed roles. However, flamie again played the role of Ace pistol performer. But this time, he did it on T-side. From that moment, NaVi started riding on momentum up to the end of the match, conceding only three rounds to FaZe. The final score was 16-13 in NaVi’s favor at IEM Katowice.

NaVi had a much easier job on the map they picked. Although FaZe kicked off on Inferno clinching two opening rounds, the Ukrainians had a 9-6 lead at half-time. NiKo and his squad were victorious in another pistol round, but it turned out to be the last round they won in the match. NaVi won remaining seven rounds in a row. As a result, they secured their spot in Semi-final. They probably started preparing for Team Liquid, but ENCE ruined their plans.

Navi Win ESL IEM Katowice CSGO Event
Image source: twitter.com/IEM
ENCE shocked Team Liquid and the whole CS:GO world

In the second Quarter-final, we saw a multiple triple-kills, and one amazing 1v3 clutch from Twistzz on Inferno. Teams started the match on Mirage. ENCE’s player sergej eliminated three opponents in a first pistol round and had a big impact on ENCE’s first-round win. Then, the Finish team won another round by bomb explosion. ENCE managed to plant a bomb in three out of four following rounds at IEM Katowice.

Nevertheless, Team Liquid defused the bomb each time. Stewie2k demonstrated the power of AUG during A site overtake in the 4th round. He took down four of ENCE’s players. The first half featured multiple rounds winning streaks from both sides. In the end, ENCE had a minimal advantage. The NA team won first two rounds of the second half, but ENCE punched back in the same way. The first map was so intense until the 24th round when ENCE again went on winning streak. They won all remaining rounds to set the final score 16-11.

What a comeback

Afterward, ENCE and Liquid moved to Inferno. ENCE came to an early advantage considering they were leading 5-2 after seven rounds. Team Liquid took momentum away from ENCE and started riding on it all the way to the end of the first half. As mentioned, Twistzz had a huge impact on the result with his 1v3 clutch when he defended the planted bomb on B site. ENCE got closer to Team Liquid after winning opening three rounds of the second half of the IEM Katowice.

Regardless, nitr0 and company then clinched four rounds in a row and reached seven map points. It seemed like the match was going to the final map, but Finns did something incredible. They managed to come back and completely break Liquid’s economy several times. They took the game to Overtime.

After such shock, Team Liquid was mentally down. As a consequence, ENCE was the first team who achieved 19 rounds win. They left everyone in Spodek arena shocked as well as all people who watched the stream. Obviously, they spoiled Pick’em Challenge of most CS:GO fans. So, they booked a meeting with NaVi. The whole situation is even crazier if we mention that ENCE was on the edge of elimination in the Legends Stage. They had a score of 0-2 after first, and had to win three matches in a row. Also, according to words of Aleksib, ENCE’s goal at IEM Katowice is to lift the trophy.

MiBR finally stopped Renegades

The Australian team has been performing pretty well all the way from Qualifier event up to now. They were unbeatable. They met a very strong team in the Quarters. Nevertheless, the reason behind Renegades’ defeat may be a bad map choice. As we could hear lately from MiBR’s members, they wanted to pick Dust 2, but they thought Renegades would have banned it. On the contrary, Dust 2 was Renegades’ first pick. That made the whole thing much easier for MiBR as they basically got one free pick, and they chose Train.

MiBR demonstrated to Renegades that they made a bad choice right at the beginning. After six rounds, Renegades was 5-1 down. Although they won the following three rounds and fixed their economy, it wasn’t sufficient for a competitive result. MiBR was leading 10-5 on the half-time. TACO’s quad-kill in the 10th round player a big part in MiBR’s first-half lead. Popular MiBR’s entry fragger calmly waited on B site with his AUG. Renegades tried to penetrate but TACO stopped them in excellent fashion.

Renegades won the second pistol round, but MiBR quickly took advantage. They didn’t allow Aussies to win any round up to the end. Therefore, the final score was 16-6.

Renegades’ had a chance

Players then moved to Train. Interestingly, Renegades stepped on MiBR’s pick in a good way. In the first 11 rounds, MiBR won just one. Then they clinched three rounds in a row, but Renegades was a team who won the last round before switching sides. It was a big lead for AZR and company on half-time (11-4). Therefore, no one assumed that Renegades will win just another one round up to the end. And that was exactly what occurred at the IEM Katowice.

MiBr Win ESL IEM Katowice CSGO Event
Image source: IEM Twitter

The 18th round was the last one that ended in Renegades’ favor. Then, Brazilians won all 9 remaining rounds to take a place in another Major Semi-final. But, if they want to go further, they have to accomplish one of the toughest tasks. They have to beat Astralis.

15-0 on Mirage

The audience in Spodek Arena obviously wanted to see NiP in the Semis, as they rooted for them pretty loudly. However, NiP needed something more than that, especially on the first map. They picked Mirage but must regret that now. Gla1ve tapped down three NiP’s players in the first pistol round to help Astralis to kick off the match in a good way. Two rounds later, clutch minister Xyp9x performed quad-kill clutch, denying NiP from planting a bomb at all.

Six rounds later, another Atralis’ player had a quad-kill, and a score-number on NiP’s side was the same – 0. They literally couldn’t clinch a single round on T side. It was embarrassing. Although Astralis already dropped big lead in Legends Stage on Mirage once, it would have been real madness if they had dropped 15-0. But they hadn’t. Instead, they “allowed” NiP to win two rounds. So NiP avoided the embarrassment that Cloud9 needed to deal with.

Ninjas in Pyjamas almost came back on Dust 2 at IEM Katowice

Astralis stepped on Dust 2 convincingly. They didn’t allow Ninjas in Pyjamas to fix their economy at any point of the first half. The result at the end of the first half was 11-4. So, it looked like it was going to be an easy job for Danes. But then, NiP started playing more aggressive with no respect for Astralis. At one point, two of Astralis players didn’t even expect that NiP players would come to A site so early. They were caught unready, which is very unusual for the Danish team.

Astralis’ lead was gradually melting, and after 27 rounds, NiP was the team with an advantage. They were leading 14-13. The 28th round was a key round on Dust 2. NiP threw few smokes on A site and wanted to approach a site from Catwalk. But Xyp9x was waiting in front of smokes with his AUG. He took down three of NiP’s players and Spodek Arena went crazy. The result was tied. The atmosphere was incredibly intense as NiP just had to win the following round, and Astalis knew that as well.

Then they showed why they are the best team in the world. They performed at their best under the biggest pressure. They won the 29th round and left NiP’s economy totally ruined. As a result, Ninjas in Pyjamas had to try to get to Overtime only with f0rest’s AWP and four pistols, which is, apparently not enough against Astralis. The Danes just crushed the Swedish team to book another clash with MiBR in Semi-final at IEM Katowice.

Magisk was the MVP of the whole match with 1.41 rating, and 41 kills. Also, he dealt 84.6 damage per round and had 81.2 % KAST. This is going to be the 25th meeting between MiBR and Astralis, including matches between SK Gaming as well. Astralis leads 26-15 in a number of maps won in matches versus Brazilians at the ESL IEM Katowice.

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