WARDELL and Ghost will have a one map advantage in the Grand Final
Two days of play have concluded in the ESL One Cologne 2019 North America qualifier, seeing five out of eight teams eliminated. Still standing in the upper bracket are Ghost, with FURIA and Lazarus in the lower bracket.
The first round of play proceeded mostly as expected, aside from Lazarus shocking FURIA in a three map thriller, which saw the middle map of Mirage go to overtime, despite the North American side holding a 10-5 lead at the half. It was a rough series for Michael "dapr" Gulino, but fortunately his teammates stepped up, all finishing with ratings over 1.00.
|2 - 1||
|de_overpass||10 - 16||de_overpass|
|de_mirage||19 - 15||de_mirage|
|de_inferno||16 - 9||de_inferno|
Lazarus' winning ways continued against Complexity, in another series that went the distance. Following the same pattern as the series against FURIA, Lazarus dropped the opening map before roaring back to reverse-sweep. Complexity's resident Australian Ricardo "Rickeh" Mulholland, whose visa issues precluded him from attending the first stage of ESL Pro League Season 9, struggled in the series — as did the majority of his teammates.
|1 - 2||
|de_mirage||16 - 11||de_mirage|
|de_train||8 - 16||de_train|
|de_inferno||5 - 16||de_inferno|
On the other side of the bracket, Ghost matter-of-factly defeated an Envy side fielding coach Zachary "Eley" Stauffer in place of Noah "Nifty" Francis, who is currently in Spain as part of the BLAST Pro Series Madrid talent line-up.
This set the stage for a showdown between Ghost and Lazarus in the upper bracket, in a rematch from ESL Pro League Season 9 Group B. Though the final scoreline was the same 2-0 as the previous series, Lazarus looked much more up to the task the second time around, taking Ghost to overtime on Inferno, and then narrowly losing on Nuke.
|2 - 0||
|de_inferno||22 - 18||de_inferno|
|de_nuke||16 - 14||de_nuke|
Down in the lower bracket, ATK managed a dominant upset over an INTZ side still fielding Jaccob "yay" Whiteaker, before themselves falling to Complexity in a 2-1 series where Rickeh and co. looked much improved.
On the other side of the bracket, FURIA took a close series over Bad News Bears and stand-in Austin "crashies" Roberts, followed by a 2-0's over Envy and Complexity.
The final two matches of the qualifier are as follows:
|FURIA||vs.||Lazarus||3 PM EDT|
|Ghost||vs.||TBD||6 PM EDT|
Whichever team is left standing at the end will secure themselves a spot at ESL One Cologne, taking place from July 2nd - 7th. They will join Vitality and MVP PK, who have already qualified.
The final qualification spot will go to either AVANGAR or Heroic. The match between the two teams has been postponed due to Martin "stavn" Lund being hospitalized earlier today.