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MIBR, Liquid, and Renegades to EPL playoffs; NRG and Ghost eliminated
Half of the playoffs bracket consists of teams playing in North America after the third day of matches.
Written by: Nohte    December 6th 2018 4:18 pm    #ESL #EPLS8 #EPLS8Finals #Odense #Ghost #Renegades #MIBR   

MIBR have earned themselves a spot in the semifinals

The third day of the ESL Pro League Season 8 Finals in Denmark have concluded, seeing Liquid and Renegades through to the quarterfinals while MIBR secured a semifinals berth with a win over mousesports.

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The first game that took place this morning saw Ghost edge out NRG 2-1 (14-16 Inferno, 16-10 Cache, 16-14 Mirage) in the Group B lower bracket semifinal to keep their tournament hopes alive.

NRG managed to post a 6-1 lead to kick off Inferno, but struggled to maintain it as they found just two additional rounds in the half while Ghost caught up to trail by a single round when they swapped sides. Joshua "steel" Nissan's side continued their momentum into the second half as they took seven of the first eight rounds in the second half to put themselves ahead 14-9, but they were unable to close out the match as NRG took seven straight rounds of their own to clinch their map pick 16-14.

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Ghost took firm control on Cache with a 10-5 CT side half helmed by Matthew "WARDELL" Yu, with NRG battling back with the first three rounds of the second half. Ghost weren't going to let their lead slip this time however, and took the series to the deciding map of Mirage with a 16-10 win on Cache.

Ghost won the first pistol round of Mirage to allow themselves a 3-0 lead, but struggled for the remainder of the half as NRG's CT hold proved too strong. Managing just a single additional round on their T side, things were looking grim for Ghost as they swapped sides trailing 4-11 at the half. Seven straight rounds allowed for Ghost to even the score immediately, and two timely resets against the NRG economy allowed for Ghost to rally back and complete the comeback for a 16-14 victory.

ESL Pro League Season 8 Finals
Best of three maps
2 - 1
de_inferno 14 - 16 de_inferno
de_cache 16 - 10 de_cache
de_mirage 16 - 14 de_mirage

Not long after, Renegades claimed a spot in the quarterfinals by picking up a 2-1 victory over G2 in the Group A lower bracket final (10-16 Overpass, 16-13 Train, 16-8 Cache), completing a run through the lower bracket having already taken wins over ViCi and BIG.

Despite edging out an 8-7 lead on G2's pick of Overpass, Renegades were unable to maintain the momentum in the second half and managed only two rounds before the Frenchmen went up 1-0 in the series. 

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It was Justin "jks" Savage who stepped up for the Australian team on Train, resetting G2 after they took the pistol round to work their way up to a 7-2 lead. G2 pushed back with four rounds of their own, but Renegades took a firm 9-6 lead at the half as they swapped over to their CT side.

Four of the first five rounds of the half went to Renegades, putting themselves in touching distance of a win at 13-7, but timely economic resets by G2 prolonged the game as the Frenchmen fought for a 2-0 series win. It was only when G2 reached 13 rounds of their own that Renegades stabilized their economy and took the final two rounds they needed, edging out the map 16-13.

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Once again it was jks that stepped up for Renegades on the deciding map of Cache. Although G2 put up a 4-0 lead to kick off the map, Renegades still managed to edge out an 8-7 lead in the first half by resetting the G2 economy on two occasions. Much like Renegades' no-show in the second half of Overpass, G2 were unable to get anything going on their own CT side as jks tore apart their defenses, allowing the French just a single round in the second half before closing out the map 16-8.

ESL Pro League Season 8 Finals
Best of three maps
2 - 1
de_overpass 10 - 16 de_overpass
de_train 16 - 13 de_train
de_cache 16 - 8 de_cache

Liquid had to go up against their Danish rivals from Astralis in the Group A upper bracket final, with the winner claiming a spot in the semifinals while the loser would advance to the quarterfinals. Again, the best team in the world weren't to be thwarted as they took down the North American team 2-0 (16-12 Inferno, 16-8 Nuke).

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Inferno began with Liquid in control, picking up the first three rounds of the match to take the lead. They were unable to maintain that momentum once Astralis' economy stabilized, and the Danes granted Liquid just three more rounds in the half as they worked their way to a 9-6 lead.

Again, Liquid got off to a solid start in the second half by taking the first round rounds for themselves, and even managed to reset Astralis' economy after the Danes picked up their first round to snatch the lead away 11-10. Astralis weren't ready to go down without a fight however, and countered with five rounds straight to take match point for themselves. Liquid eeked out one final round before Astralis put their hopes to bed, taking the first map 16-12 and moving the series to their territory of Nuke.

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Another solid start saw Liquid begin Nuke with a 4-1 lead on their CT side, but again they were unable to maintain it for long as Astralis fought back to take eight of the remaining ten rounds of the half. Once on their CT side, Astralis were quick to extend their lead to 15-6, leaving Liquid time for just two final rounds before they took the map 16-8, making their record on Nuke 27-0.

ESL Pro League Season 8 Finals
Best of three maps
2 - 0
de_inferno 16 - 12 de_inferno
de_nuke 16 - 8 de_nuke
de_overpass de_overpass

The second upper bracket final took place shortly after, with MIBR picking up a 2-0 win over mousesports (16-14 Train, 16-6 Inferno) to advance to the semifinals.

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Despite the close scoreline, the first map initially seemed anything but close as MIBR opened up their CT side with an 11-4 lead. A pistol round victory in the second half allowed for them to further extend their lead to 13-4, and after mousesports picked up two rounds, edge themselves even closer to match point at 14-6. Multikills by mousesports players and a variety of setups allowed for the European side to even the score at 14-14 by winning eight rounds in a row, but they were unable to prevail in the end as MIBR took the map win 16-14.

Inferno was a European bloodbath as MIBR immediately countered mousesports' pistol round win with a victory of their own in the second round, using the momentum to spur themselves up to a 5-1 lead. Once mousesports finally nabbed a second round, thanks majorly in part to a 1vs3 clutch by Miikka "suNny" Kemppi, MIBR reset them again to widen their lead to 12-2, with mousesports managing to edge out the final round of the half.

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Although the Europeans took the first trio of rounds in the second half for themselves, MIBR promptly brought the series to a close by winning the final four rounds, with Tarik "tarik" Celik picking up a 1vs3 clutch to close out the map in the last round.

ESL Pro League Season 8 Finals
Best of three maps
2 - 0
de_train 16 - 14 de_train
de_inferno 16 - 6 de_inferno
de_mirage de_mirage

The Group B lower bracket final, and last match of the day, saw Ghost up against Na`Vi for a spot in the quarterfinals. Although they managed to take the first map for themselves, steel and co. were unable to edge out the series and Na`Vi took the win 2-1 in the end (11-16 Inferno, 19-16 Train, 16-6 Mirage).

The first pistol round of Inferno went the way of Na`Vi, allowing them a 2-0 lead to start, but Ghost were quick to seize control as they reclaimed the lead before working their way up to a 9-3 scoreline. Na`Vi kept themselves competitive by taking the final three rounds of the half, but Ghost managed to take the map win 16-11 in the second half after their economy stabilized thanks to a combined effort by the team.

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It was Na`Vi who got a solid start to Train, going up 4-0 on their CT side before Ghost replied back with four of their own to even the score. Na`Vi pushed back with two site retakes to regain the lead 6-4, but Ghost still managed to edge out the lead at the end of the half 8-7 as they swapped to their CT side.

Na`Vi won their third pistol round of the series to take control of the economy in the second half, crushing Ghost's money three times to work their way up to match point at 15-11. Ghost managed to rally back and take the map into overtime, but were unable to put a stop to Aleksandr "s1mple" Kostyliev as Na`Vi took the map win 19-16, with s1mple finding 40 frags and ending the 35-round game with 113 ADR.

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Another 4-0 lead on Mirage saw Ghost begin to lead the way on the deciding map, but Ioann "Edward" Sukhariev came to life for his side to help Na`Vi pick up nine of the following ten rounds to take a 9-6 lead at the half. The CIS squad continued their momentum on their T side, locking Ghost out of the series with a 16-6 win to claim a spot in the quarterfinals.

ESL Pro League Season 8 Finals
Best of three maps
Natus Vincere
2 - 1
de_inferno 11 - 16 de_inferno
de_train 19 - 16 de_train
de_mirage 16 - 6 de_mirage

MIBR have earned themselves a semifinals berth, while Liquid and Renegades have advanced to the quarterfinals. The playoffs bracket, with times in EST, is as follows:

Friday, December 7th
10:00 AM au Renegades vs. eu mousesports BO3
1:50 PM nam Liquid vs. ua Natus Vincere BO3
Saturday, December 8th
10:00 AM dk Astralis vs. world Renegades/mousesports winner BO3
1:50 PM br MIBR vs. world Liquid/Na`Vi winner BO3
Sunday, December 9th
10:00 AM EPL Season 8 Grand Final BO5
#1 006_tv
2018-12-06 21:41
So dang close Ghost, ggwp. If S1mple didn't go ham, that was a 2-0.
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