We’re over halfway done with the group stage of the European ESL One Frankfurt Qualifier, with 16 of the 24 group stage matches already played. Everything is still possible in all groups, with first and second placed teams having a chance at the coveted three qualifier spots.
With the first-ranked teams of each group qualifying for the playoffs on the 28th and 29th of April and second place teams having one last chance in a final grid, every team except for Sigma.int still has a chance at qualifying for Frankfurt. Let’s take a closer look at the four groups, the current standings and the matches still waiting to be played.
Group A: Who can stop Team Empire?
This week saw Monomaniacs face off against Team Empire, with no team in the world wanting to be in their shoes after Empire’s stellar run at the Star Series Star Ladder LAN Finals. However, the newly sponsored Monomaniacs had something to prove.
Team Empire asserted their dominance in the first game of the series, although Monomaniacs didn’t got down without a fight. The second game saw Monomaniacs defiantly push back against the Russian/Ukrainian team, thus allowing them to tie up the series. Monomaniacs, who qualified through the open bracket, now has two ties to their name, with their last match against Virtus.pro still to be fought.
Virtus.pro’s forfeiting of their match against Team Empire last night resulted in an automatic 2-0 victory for Team Empire, earning them the top position in the group. Later today they’ll be facing MeetYourMakers, but who will come out on top?
Tonight might be the deciding moment for Team Empire as they face off against MeetYourMakers – winning this game will secure them the first place finish in the group and a shot at qualifying for ESL One Frankfurt.
If they were to tie their game against MeetYourMakers, Monomaniacs would still be able to cause a tiebreaker. MeetYourMakers also has their own shot at the top of the group if they are able to defeat both of their opponents 2-0.
Group B: Relax vs. the world
Most didn’t expect much from second stage invitee and relative unknown Relax (AKA Relax, you’re doing fine), and in a group with RoX.KIS and Team Dog, who could blame them? However, yesterday they proved their doubters wrong.
After spectacularly defeating RoX.KIS in their first match of the qualifier yesterday, the Russian team proved exactly why they were invited to this qualifier, winning the series with a decisive 2-0.
However, the battle wasn’t over yet for Relax, with a match between them and group leader Team Dog deciding who would secure the top position in the group.
The hard-fought series ultimately ended in a tie, and thus also a tie in the group standings. It will be up to mYinsanity to decisively take these teams down, or else we might be looking at tiebreakers for the group.
Anything is still possible in Group B but it’s all in the hands of mYinsanity. They still have two matchups ahead of them against group leaders Team Dog and Relax. A tough road ahead of them, they’ll have to beat both to secure the top spot in the group. The next match of this group will be played on Friday the 25th at 22:00 CEST, when Team Dog will take on mYinstanity.
Group C: A tough road for NEXT.kz
Fnatic might have already played their three games but they’re not in the clear yet, while NEXT.kz still has two matches to play against Duza Gaming and Power Rangers. Winning both would put them in a tied position at the top of the group with Fnatic. Tune in on Friday the 25th at 22:00 CEST, when NEXT .kz takes on Duza Gaming.
Group D: It’s all up to Cloud 9
With the removal of Sigma.int from the qualifier, group D has became a bit easier for them, but they still have to perform well in both matches to secure the top spot. Cloud 9 will be facing off against GOOMBA Gaming later tonight at 20:00 CEST in order to decide who takes the top spot in the group.
The tournament continues today with a match from both Group A and Group D. Today’s schedule is as follows:
- 18:00 CEST – Empire vs. MeetYourMakers
- 20:00 CEST – Cloud 9 vs. Goomba
Tune in to the action live on the joinDOTA Twitch channel.
Additionally, if you missed any of the previous matches, be sure to check out joinDOTA’s YouTube channel for all the VODs.
For more information about ESL One Frankfurt, head over to the official website for all the details!