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Counter Strike: Global Offensive

Virtus.pro see off Vitality, FURIA eliminate FaZe in IEM Katowice

Virtus.pro and FURIA are through to Group B’s lower bracket final in IEM Katowice following victories over Vitality and FaZe, respectively. The CIS team put in a solid performance to move past the current world No.3, who looked a bit off-colour and spent most of the series on the back foot, although credit still must be given to them as they came back from 15-8 down on Inferno before losing the game in overtime.

After previously moving past NIP, Virtus.pro will now look to complete their lower bracket run against the scary FURIA, who were firing on all cylinders in the two map victories over FaZe, showing no signs of discomfort with their newest addition as they outplayed and outclassed their opponents.

Vitality came out the stronger side on Inferno and gained a foothold in the game early on after keeping Virtus.pro from stringing rounds together. But after that slow start, the CIS team took control of proceedings and had Vitality against the ropes for the remainder of the half, which ended with five rounds separating the two sides.

Virtus.pro took down Vitality in a match between two top-five sides

More misery was to come for the French team, who won the pistol round but failed to convert the second round, with the scoreline blooming to a 14-6 lead. The CIS side hit map point shortly afterwards but could not close out the map as Vitality took control of the game and forced overtime. The momentum was now very much with the French side, but Virtus.pro kept their composure and wrapped up the game after winning two rounds in each half, with Timur “⁠buster⁠” Tulepov delivering the finishing blow with a 1v2 clutch inside B.

Dzhami “⁠Jame⁠” Ali was the main instigator as Virtus.pro shut out the Vitality offence for large portions of the first half on Overpass, although they had just a narrow 8-7 lead heading into the break after the Frenchmen came alive towards the end of their T side. Mareks “⁠YEKINDAR⁠” Gaļinskis kicked Virtus.pro further into the lead with three quick frags in the following pistol round, with the team using that momentum to carve out a 13-7 lead. With no room for error, Vitality tightened up and brought the deficit to a solitary round, but VP were unwilling to let a comeback happen and put the match to rest.

FaZe established an early lead on Mirage, but they lost their grip on the game after FURIA brought out a double AWP setup, Paytyn “⁠junior⁠” Johnson and Andrei “⁠arT⁠” Piovezan combining for 31 frags in the half as the Brazilian team raced to a 10-5 lead. The international team hit back in the following pistol round, but then they were caught off-guard as Kaike “⁠KSCERATO⁠” Cerato picked up a spectacular trio of frags to turn the tide back in favour of FURIA, who ran away with the game.

FaZe bounced back from that disappointment with a strong defensive showing on Overpass, picking up 10 rounds in a one-sided half that witnessed a vintage performance by Håvard “⁠rain⁠” Nygaard (2.07 rating, 134 ADR). FURIA rallied back from a 12-5 deficit and enjoyed a spell of dominance, but FaZe picked themselves up in the closing stages and secured the victory to level the series. The final map, Train, was a complete blowout as FURIA ran rampant from the offset, dominating the European team thanks to stellar performances from Yuri “⁠yuurih⁠” Santos and KSCERATO, who combined for 46 frags to knock FaZe out of the tournament.

CIS

France

Europe

Brazil

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Counter Strike: Global Offensive

NIP, OG eliminated from IEM Katowice as Virtus.pro, FaZe prevail

Virtus.pro and FaZe are through to the Group B lower-bracket semi-finals in IEM Katowice following victories over NIP and OG, respectively. The CIS team now await the loser of the match between Vitality and Liquid, while karrigan‘s troops will face either Natus Vincere or FURIA.

Virtus.pro won the three first rounds on Inferno, but NIP took the lead as soon as they could afford rifles. The Ninjas were displaying a solid defensive setup until Mareks “⁠YEKINDAR⁠” Gaļinskis managed to grab three kills on A in an eco-round and Timur “⁠buster⁠” Tulepov won an 1v2 clutch in the after-plant. The CIS team won three more rounds after that and switched to the CT side with a narrow 8-7 lead. Virtus.pro set the tone of the second half as they won four in a row, leaving the Ninjas in a tough spot. NIP broke the streak, but they could not take a stranglehold in the half as Dzhami “⁠Jame⁠” Ali‘s troops quickly wrapped up the map.

Jame was the top-fragger on Overpass

NIP came out strongly on Overpass and picked up a 5-0 lead on their T side, but then Virtus.pro tightened up to win the half by the slightest of margins. The CIS team improved after the side switch as they had correct reads all the time and won eight in a row to eliminate the Swedes from the tournament.

FaZe enjoyed a 6-1 lead on their CT side on Mirage until OG won four in a row off the back of a successful force-buy. FaZe managed to add three more to their tally before the end of the half, with Russel “⁠Twistzz⁠” Van Dulken leading the charge with 21 frags. karrigan‘s side dismantled OG‘s defence in the second half, in which Helvijs “⁠broky⁠” Saukants posted a 2.85 rating (15-1 K-D, 152.5 ADR).

FaZe put on a dominant CT side on Dust2 as they strolled to a 7-0 lead. OG still managed to salvage their T side, bringing the deficit to three rounds before the break, but FaZe ran away with the game in the second half after preventing their opponents from stringing rounds together.

Sweden

CIS

Europe

Europe

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Counter Strike: Global Offensive

olofmeister confirms FaZe departure | HLTV.org

Olof “⁠olofmeister⁠” Kajbjer has confirmed that BLAST Premier Spring Groups was his last tournament with FaZe and that he will now be taking a step back as he evaluates his options for the future.

On Friday, the 29-year-old revealed in a post-match interview that he hadn’t made his mind up yet in regards to retirement, pushing back on statements made by Marcelo “⁠coldzera⁠” David in previous interviews that indicated the Swedish veteran would retire following his departure from FaZe.

olofmeister has been a part of FaZe since August 2017, helping the team to a runner-up finish to Cloud9 at the ELEAGUE Boston Major. The team also secured three title victories in 2017 at ESL One New York, ELEAGUE Premier, and ECS Season 4 Finals, won EPICENTER the subsequent year over Natus Vincere, and picked up a handful of tournament wins at various BLAST Pro Series events in 2019.

The two-time Major champion and best player of 2015 had a fitting end to his tenure on FaZe as he was the team’s second-highest rated player in the BLAST Premier Spring Group, averaging a 1.10 rating as the team qualified for the Spring Finals following two wins over Liquid.

FaZe, who will return to action on Thursday in the main stage of IEM Katowice, have been credited with an interest in Finn “⁠karrigan⁠” Andersen, who led the international team between October 2016 and December 2018. The Danish tactician was recently removed from mousesports’ lineup, with the organization acquiring Christopher “⁠dexter⁠” Nong from Renegades.

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Counter Strike: Global Offensive

FaZe take down Liquid to qualify for BLAST Premier Spring Final

FaZe have done the double over Liquid in Group C of the BLAST tournament to book their spot in the BLAST Premier Spring Final with a 2-0 victory in Group C’s consolidation final. The matchup featured the same maps as their opening round encounter, but this time in a different order. Nuke was up first, where Olof “⁠olofmeister⁠” Kajbjer rolled back the years with a quality display to be the difference-maker in a double overtime contest before a solid all-round team performance on Inferno closed the series out.

The European squad will face off with Natus Vincere in the group’s grand final at 20:30