Dignitas vs CLG
Dignitas and CLG are matched up against each other in the Group stage match of the Cologne Major to be held on the 6th of July 2016 at 11:00 CEST
Dignitas looked really strong yesterday against Astralis. Whether that is an aftereffect of Astralis not playing as well with Glaive or Dignitas just showing up is yet to be seen. Remember Dignitas won rounds in spurts. They initially were down 0-5 before they made a comeback to win some rounds towards the later part of the first half. Subsequently winning the second pistol and a few gun rounds, but that is when they met the Astralis firewall on the CT side. Both teams were showing a bit too much respect to each other IMO. Dignitas banned Dust2 and Train.
CLG on their part removed Cache, Nuke and Train .You have to remember that coming into this match CLG is the higher seed. As such they will get three vetoes as opposed to the two for Dignitas. CLG however have not maintained their form so far into the tournament. After the loss of JDM, we see CLG having troubles in closing out matches. Hazed and Pita have been topping the scoreboard for CLG. WIth a roster comprising the likes of Koosta and Tarik it is quite surprising to see them at the rock bottom of the teams score. With many questionable plays by the NA side, we saw Tarik jump down to CTSpawn in the anti eco round and hand over a gun to Gambit. That round definitely helped tilt the game in favor of Gambit.
I feel Dignitas are the better team here. The maps that CLG might favor include Dust2, Cobblestone, Cache & Mirage. Dust2 is definitely going to be banned by Dignitas while the remaining three maps are actually quite strong maps for Dignitas. CajunB was able to go toe to toe with Karrigan on Overpass and that is definitely an encouraging sign for the Dig faitful
The Prediction : 60%-40% Dignitas
The Bet : Medium on Dignitas.
Astralis vs Gambit
Astralis and Gambit are matched up against each other in the Groups Stage of the Cologne Major to be held on the 6th of July 2016 at 12:15 CEST
Astralis despite their struggles in the mid game against Dignitas should be able to win this match against Gambit. The only exception I really see is on Cobblestone ( which is one of the best maps for Gambit while being the worst map for Astralis). The Danish side has gone back to Karrigan AWPing while Device is sticking to the rifle. This definitely helps the fragging capability of the team as IMO device is much more influential with the rifle. This probably has more to do with Karrigan being not as useful with the rifle as he is with the AWP.
Gambit had a decent match against CLG. They were however facing off against a depleted CLG side with no JDM and an underperforming Koosta + Tarik combo. The fact that they barely managed a 16-13 win over CLG. Astralis level is way above CLG.
This match is simply two opponents who are of different skill groups. Astralis is the superior team by a margin here
The Prediction : 70%-30% Astralis
The Bet : High on Astralis.
Flipside vs Optic
Flipside and Optic are matched up against each other in the Group stage match of the Cologne Major to be held on the 6th of July 2016 at 14:45 CEST
Both the teams had very one sided losses yesterday in the Group stage. Flipside lost 7-16 to NaVi on Train, which is one of the best maps for the Flipside roster. Optic on the other hand had a humiliating 4-16 loss to NIP Gaming on Dust2. Of course these maps are some of the top maps for both NIP and NaVi but the scoreline was a total shock.
Flipside however did show signs of life on the CT side of their match against NaVi. They just had too steep a slope to climb. Coming back from 13-2 is quite difficult and it of course proved too big a task for them to handle. Flipside had some good signs as we saw Markeloff and B1ade really showing up on their own CT side.
Optic on the other hand had Dust2 and they simply did not look good on it. NIP used to be very good on it earlier however their recent Dust2 results have not been convincing. Despite that Optic did not look good and were unable to take off at all.
I think the map would be a big factor in this match and even though Optic are a good team, the two teams share such a similar map pool. Optic and Flipside both are really good on Train and Flipside even have practiced on the map today. Cache and Cobblestone are maps that both the teams like to play on. It just seems that Flipside is playing much better right now. They have never been able to get out of the Groups, however that has never been for lack of trying.
Flipside has the superior aim IMO and since the map pool is so similar for both the teams, the aim should win it.
The Bet : 60%-40% Flipside
The Bet : Low on Flipside. ( It is a risky bet as both were smashed yesterday)
NaVi vs NIP
NaVI and NIP are matched up against each other in the Group stage match of the Cologne Major to be held on the 6th of July 2016 at 13:30 CEST.
NaVi vs NIP is a very important match. Quite contrary to the previous prediction these two teams smashed their opponents yesterday. NaVi saw Guardian being back in form and his presence definitely put NaVi as one of the frontrunners during this Major.
Both these teams are fairly even in terms of aim. The maps would be very important in this match as we go forward.
Now NaVi are the higher seeds and hence they would be the one banning 3 maps. Let me try to guess the vetoes ;
- NaVI ban Cache
- NIP ban Overpass
- NaVi ban Nuke
- NIP ban Mirage
- NaVi ban Cobblestone
That leaves Dust2 & Train. These maps are so good for both the teams. NaVI were fantastic on Train today while NIP were similar on Dust2.
NaVI have however shied away from playing Dust2 in their recent matches. Dust2 is Guardianś map and a map that he is extremely good on. However it would be fair to say that Dust2 is NIPś playground as well. Its their favorite map by far and their dominance on this map today just goes to show the level of comfort that the team has on Dust2.
Train is a good map for both teams. NaVi had a dominant CT side on Train today as they were up 13-2. However their T side was left wanting as they looked weak on the map. FLipside were showing a lot of respect for the CIS side and thats something that helped NaVi play. NIP if they would be playing NaVi on Train, we would see a lot more aggressive and surprise plays.
This match is very close. It is at best 55-45% for either team. If you ask me I would say it slightly favors NIP.
The Prediction : 55%-45% NIP
The Bet : Low on NIP. It is a very risky match as either team can win easily.
VP vs Liquid
VP and Liquid are matched up against each other in the Group stage of the Cologne Major to be held on the 6th of July 2016 at 16:00 CEST.
Virtus Pro managed an awesome comeback yesterday after being down 0-7. The Polish side saw some amazing performances from Snax and even NEO who took it upon themselves to help their team to success.
LIquid on their part were able to win easily against EnVYUs. They had a similar match where they were down 0-5 and eventually won the game 16-7.
Virtus Pro come have come off a huge slump. However after their extended break, they were able to win quite a few matches in the recent weeks. LIquid for their part looked really good yesterday where they did not rely on an amazing performance by Simple to succeed. Their win was a team effort and it was quite satisfying.
Now we come down to the vetoes. Liquid is the higher seed coming off as the semi finalist from the last Major. As such they have three vetoes as opposed to two vetoes of Virtus Pro.
I expect VP to ban Cache and Dust2 again. Dust2 has always been their perma ban, while Cache is a strong map for Liquid.
Liquid might ban Train, Mirage and maybe Overpass?. They have shown a tendency to let Nuke remain in the map pool and as such it would not surprise me if they gamble on it again. Who knows, maybe they have had decent amount of practise on the map, as is evidenced from Simpleś reaction to Nuke being included in the Map Pool
Predicted Veto :
- Liquid ban Train
- VP ban Dust2
- Liquid ban Mirage
- VP ban Cache
- Liquid ban Overpass
Map is randomly selected off Cobblestone and Nuke.
Now if the map is Nuke, I think I will have to give the advantage to Liquid. Liquid , from Simpleś interview on HLTV seem somewhat happy about Nuke and that would only be fro them practising on the map. They also did not veto it yesterday which shows their confidence on the map. Remember they had the extra veto yesterday ( Liquid were the higher seed) and yet chose not to veto Nuke.
If the map is Cobblestone, I would like to say VP is more favored on this map. Now before you start naysaying me keep in mind that VP are actually a very good Cobblestone team. They had a hiatus but after coming back from the hiatus at E League they actually played Cobblestone twice against decently good Cobblestone team. They won 16-11 and 16-6 against Complexity and Gambit respectively. Liquid have their own problems on cobblestone. While their T sides are very strong, their CT sides are equally weak. They have improved by a bit, but they are still very weak on the CT side. This coupled with VP usually being a very strong T side makes this interesting.
Since we are hedging our bets on Liquid on Nuke , which is still an unknown quantity so far, I would say a low bet on VP makes sense. Virtus Pro on Cobblestone should show up on the T side against Liquid.
The Bet : 65%-35% VP
The Bet : Low on VP
EnVyUS vs Mouz
EnVyUs and Mouz are matched up against each other in the Group stage match of the Cologne Major to be held on the 6th of July 2016 at 17:15 CEST
EnVyUs started off really strong yesterday with a 5-0 lead over Liquid. However that soon faded with one single clutch round by a liquid player. This was basically a catastrophe for the French roster as they simply could not recover. Liquid were able to steam-roll them easily and in the subsequent rounds to win at 16-7.
The current mouz roster is the weakest roster for the German side. They have not fielded such a weak lineup in a long time and their results also reflect the same.
Now the EnVyUs Roster looks really really weak. Yes They did win the E League Group F, where their performance against other weaker teams was quite good, however most of their problems seem back yesterday against Liquid. They kept force buying and losing round after round. It seemed to many that EnVyUs of the past 2-3 months was back.
This match is really really risky and anyone could win this match. However a safer bet would be on Mouz here. Their performance despite not being up to par is still consistent. The performance of Mouz at the Major Main qualifiers was flawless including a surprise 16-1 victory over Gamers2. The team showed up when it mattered the most against other teams.
Facing EnVyus, and a probable tilted EnVyUs seeing their match yesterday Mouz might be able to win this match. They are also the underdogs coming into this match and hence a low bet on them is advisable
The Prediction : 50%-50%
The Bet : Low on Mouz based on them being the underdog
SK vs Faze
SK and Faze are matched up against each other in the Group stage of the Cologne Major to be held on the 6th of July 2016 at 18:45 CEST.
Faze had a very good Dust2 match against Fnatic. It was an extremely close match between the two teams, but Faze were able to close it out in the end.
SK showed some class in the way they handled Gamers2. The skill level was quite similar between the two teams, however one could see the effect of Fallenś leadership in some decisions that were taken by SK. There was one round where Fallen was able to call off players off the B site onto the A site anticipating correctly a fake by the French side. Another round saw the SK players baiting the lurker Shox into believing that it was safe for him to backstab the opponents. Coldzera was able to awp him down and then focus solely on the A site and not worry about a backstab.
SK are the world number one team. They have not slacked at all in their results so far. The Brazilian squad has been looking very good. Faze got lucky with a very good map for them. Dust2 is a very aim based map and one cannot deny the fact that Faze has very good aim, more so with Kioshima joining the team.
However SK always look to veto Dust2. Even Cache is a map that they are not as strong on. I totally see these two maps ( which are the better maps for Faze) being taken out of the pool by SK. As such that does put Faze into a big disadvantage in terms of the maps
The Prediction : 70%-30% SK
The Bet : Medium on SK
Fnatic vs Gamers2
Fnatic and Gamers2 are matched up against each other in the Group stage of the Cologne Major to be held on the 6th of July 2016 at 20:00 CEST.
The Group of Death definitely will see the exit of one of the favorites in the Group stage itself. Fnatic and Gamers2 were both contenders for the top slot and now the loser of this match faces elimination. Fnaticś performance lacks information as we have only seen them once with Olofmeister. Despite being very good and almost back to the 2015 performance
Gamers2 had a very impressive match against LG. Keep in mind that SK won both the pistol rounds and that is 6 rounds easily for the Brazilian side. Gamers2 did have very good gun rounds and their performance on these rounds was actually better than that of SK. Gamers2 however were thwarted by a huge margin to Fallenś IGL. They just were not able to win the economy game and the close loss eventually displays that.
I think Fnatic are still a bit overhyped so far. They did play fantastic in the one LAN tournament that they have played, but we have not seen much of them. Gamers2 on the other hand were actually quite good yesterday and give or take a few crucial rounds or a single pistol round the result could have been different
The Prediction: 60%-40% Gamers2
The Bet : Low on Gamers2.