| Tags: CS:GO, Gaming
| Author The Old One
ESL Pro League Season 17 Group C Day 1 Recap
One more group, eight more teams, but only four can qualify.
The third group of ESL Pro League Season 17 has begun, and we’ve already borne witness to some excellent action. None of the matches on Day 1 reached a climactic third map, with four teams managing to pull off clean sweeps, but some of the games within those series were unquestionably thrilling with one even going into Overtime. If you were otherwise engaged and couldn’t catch the matches live, here’s a recap for you to catch up easily.
ESL Pro League Season 17 Group C Day 1 Matches
The first day saw the formidable European side FaZe Clan take on Australian minnows Rooster, with Brazilian squad paiN Gaming going up against former Swedish greats Ninjas in Pyjamas simultaneously. Next up, rising power OG faced another Brazilian underdog 00 Nation, while the powerful French group of Team Vitality locked horns with Australia’s best, Grayhound Gaming.
FaZe Clan vs Rooster
After numerous setbacks, FaZe are back again with their third-from-last chance to secure the million-dollar Intel Grand Slam prize. The team has every component it needs to win said prize, but can’t seem to close out the remaining tournament. Rooster on the other hand are far removed from such possibilities — at least for now. They are a small-time Australian team that struggles to beat the best teams of their region. Needless to say, they would most likely not be troubling the likes of FaZe.
Rooster began their pick Nuke pretty well, equalling FaZe’s three defensive rounds with three attacking ones of their own early on. However, their ability to breach the superteam’s defenses seemed to wane after that, and they had to settle for an 11-4 half. After the switch the game was at 15-4 in no time, and although Rooster pulled off two more rounds, they lost 16-6. Russel “Twistzz” Van Dulken and Håvard “rain” Nygaard were both on fire for FaZe.
After moving to FaZe’s map Nuke, the team were probably surprised to see Rooster picking the T-side, but the Aussies put on a good show with four straight rounds at the start before ending the half on the lower side of a respectable 8-7 split. Sadly for the underdogs, FaZe had had enough for the day, and proceeded to bulldoze their defenses to end the game 16-7 without any hitches. Pretty much all of FaZe played well, but Helvijs “broky” Saukants stood out with his AWP.
paiN Gaming vs Ninjas in Pyjamas
One one side, we have a potent, young Brazilian side desperate to prove themselves. On other, a potent, relatively young Swedish team trying to do the same. There’s no doubt that NIP are stronger on paper than paiN, but they have built up a now-long history of unpredictable results, and have lost to teams ranked much lower than themselves in the past. This would be paiN’s first chance to make a statement at this event, even if they go down swinging wildly against FaZe in the following matchup.
The Brazilian side began their T-side half on their pick Nuke well with four quick rounds against NIP’s two, but the Swedes quickly bounced back to win the half with a convincing 9-6 scoreline. They managed to get 3 on the other side before paiN delivered a 7-round streak that had casters wondering if this was going to end in an upset, but the Ninjas fought back at the right time to finish the game 16-13. Aleksi “Aleksib” Virolainen and Fredrik “REZ” Sterner saved the day for a troubled NIP.
Moving on to NIP’s Vertigo, it was an identical 9-6 first half in favor of the Europeans, with the catch being that this time, it was them who were on the T-side. NIP got to game and series point quickly enough, with paiN still stuck on just 9, but the Brazilians put up a good fight near the end to cause the match to end 16-13 once again. This time, it was Ludvig “Brollan” Brolin who starred alongside another good supporting effort by REZ.
OG vs 00 Nation
Under normal circumstances, there would be no doubt that OG would be the favorites going into this. However, they are missing their brilliant leader at this tournament, and have temporarily replaced him with a former teammate who was out of professional action for quite a long time. As a result, 00 Nation had a great chance to create an upset, or at least they would have had they not been playing with a couple of new recruits themselves.
Conceding 3 defuses to start their T-side half on their map Ancient, 00 Nation were unable to string too many rounds together on the attack and had to settle for a lowly 5 thanks to some brilliant defending from OG. The Europeans climbed to 15 easily, but the South Americans managed to put the former’s celebrations on hold with some rock-solid defending that saw them take the game into Overtime. It took two rounds of Overtime to settle the matter, but OG came out on top thanks to Abdulkhalik “degster” Gasanov and Shahar “flameZ” Shushan.
On to OG’s pick Mirage, they chose to go with the T-side first and quickly showed why they had done so. 00 Nation’s defenses were ransacked as their enemies entered, planted, and blew things up again and again, finishing the last three rounds with straight-up eliminations to finish a dominant 13-2 half. Despite a decent attempt on the T-side, 00 Nation were flattened 16-6. This time it was Adam “NEOFRAG” Zouhar who topped the charts for OG, with a nod going to Marcelo “coldzera” David for a great performance in a losing cause.
Team Vitality vs Grayhound Gaming
Another one-sided Australia vs Europe matchup, Vitality may have been playing with a sub, but it would suffice to say that that sub has more top-level experience than most if not all of Grayhound combined. The French side are the defending Pro League champions — having won its 16th edition — and would love to get off to a good start. Grayhound, meanwhile, barely had a prayer, but they wouldn’t want to go down with a whimper.
The underdogs from Down Under picked Inferno, but failed to register a round win until the 12th, when they managed three in a row to go into the break 12-3. It was quickly obvious they didn’t have a chance in hell, and they were demolished 16-4. Mathieu “ZywOo” Herbaut was borderline psychotic with a performance rated 2.35, with stand-in Audric “JACKZ” Jug also putting up some good numbers.
On Vertigo, Vitality dominated on the offense with 11 rounds on the T-side, leaving Grayhound scrambling and rendering them unable to consolidate their economy by winning consecutive rounds. Once the tables were turned, Vitality once again put an end to things with only a single blemish on their run, winning 16-5. This time JACKZ took the lead with 23 kills, while team leader Dan “apEX” Madesclaire had a good game after a while with 18 of his own.
Join us again for the next recap tomorrow, and feel free to check out our other CSGO literature.