Credit: V4 Future Sports Festival
In the upper bracket of Group A, Team Vitality and Movistar Riders were facing each other for the second time in this year's tournament. At the Play-in event, Movistar Riders surprised everyone by winning 2-0 to continue their fantastic form.
On Mirage Movistar Riders repeated their 16-4 slaughter from the two teams' first rendezvous in the Play-in tournament, where the Spaniards also won Vitality’s map pick with the same exact score. Alejandro 'mopoz' Fernández-Quejo Cano made life difficult for apEX and his men with an impressive 21-8 K-D score on the map.
But unlike last time, Vitality answered back. On Vertigo the French/Danish roster completely ran over Movistar Riders with ZywOo and dupreeh and the driver's seat. A 16-3 win for Vitality triggered Nuke as the last and final map to find the winner.
On the nuclear ground, we finally got to see a more even affair between the two teams. But in the end, Movistar Riders found a gap in the defense of Vitality on the lower bombsite, which caught their much more seasoned opponents by surprise. A stellar ending to the match secured Movistar a spot in the playoffs with a superb 16-12 win. A historical moment for the Spaniards, who have never reached the playoff stage at one of the big events on the tournament calendar. They will play for a direct spot in the Semi-Finals on Sunday against NAVI, while Vitality drops down in the lower bracket, where they will now have to win two times to secure a spot at Lanxess Arena on Thursday.
Movistar Riders – Team Vitality 2-1 | IEM Cologne