A do-or-die series at IEM Cologne saw Vitality qualify for the main stage while Sprout were sent packing. 'raalz' and co. did not go silently though.
The brawl began on Sprout's Vertigo, and the first 15 rounds of the map were split in five streaks of three to the favor of Vitality who led 9-6 at halftime, after great performances from 'misutaaa' and 'Magisk'.
'Staehr' started heating up on the CT side and managed to pull his team back into contention, and even carried them to a double-overtime victory on a map where he was the only Sprout player with a positive rating.
After the devastating OT loss on Vertigo, Vitality now absolutely had to win on their pick of Dust2. The French/Danish mix seemed aware of the situation as they delivered an awesome 10-5 T side, putting them in a cozy situation as they switched to the defensive side.
After winning the first five rounds of the second half and equalizing the score, Sprout started losing control as 'dupreeh' and 'Magisk' repelled everything that was sent against them on the defense. The Danes duo made sure that Vitality safely took Dust2 at 16-11.
After a very promising 6-1 offensive start on the deciding map of Overpass, Sprout, unfortunately, started to let their lead slip. 'dupreeh' and 'apEX' led the Vitality lineup to a 7-1 run that saw them take a one-round lead at the break.
After taking the pistol round and the following conversion, it seemed like Sprout's power had run out. The 'apEX'-led squad pretty safely closed out the map and the series with an 8-1 streak, and thereby eliminated Sprout from the competition.
Highlight of the Bo3-series:
Sprout - Vitality 1-2 | IEM Cologne Play-in
22-20 (Vertigo) | Staehr - 1.55 Rating / 41-25 K-D / 104.2 ADR
11-16 (Dust2) | dupreeh - 1.39 Rating / 22-14 K-D / 92.6 ADR
10-16 (Overpass) | Magisk - 1.41 Rating / 21-15 K-D / 99.0 ADR
MVP: Victor 'Staehr' Staehr - 1.33 Rating / 79-59 K-D / 93.3 ADR