Natus Vincere have secured a spot in the IEM Katowice playoffs after beating FURIA 2-0 to send the Brazilian side to Group B’s lower bracket, while G2 survived a tough series against Evil Geniuses to eliminate the North American side from the tournament in joint-ninth place.
Natus Vincere opened their series with a hard-earned victory on Mirage, where several key plays from Aleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev made all the difference. The superstar’s three multi-kills gave his team an early advantage after a forcebuy back-and-forth that lasted for five rounds, which led to a 9-6 CT half.
NAVI extended their lead after sides switched with a pistol round win but struggled in the opening gunrounds, with FURIA equalizing the score at 12-12, before s1mple stepped up again with two triples to get NAVI out of the rut and close the map 16-13.
Nuke was a much simpler affair for Natus Vincere once they got ahead after another early blow-for-blow exchange in forcebuy rounds. With Deagles in hand in the tenth round, the Russian side managed to tilt the economy in their favor and stabilize, winning a few close scenarios to pick up another 9-6 half. FURIA secured the second pistol, but another forcebuy upset gave NAVI all the tools to close the series with ease at 16-8, 2-0.
Over in Group A’s lower bracket, G2 secured Train and Dust2 in narrow fashion against Evil Geniuses despite Vincent “Brehze” Cayonte‘s best efforts, as the American went 33-16 and 29-20 only to see his team lose both maps by the smallest of margins, 14-16 and 14-16.