Wow – what a tournament this has been so far. We definitely didn’t predict EnVyUs to flop as badly as they did and our outright tip falls at the first hurdle. Did they realize this was a $250,000 event? At no stage did they look like themselves as they got stomped by NiP, then outplayed by Luminosity.
So, the stage is now set for the Semi-Finals.
Fnatic (3/10 bet365) v Virtus Pro (11/4 SkyBet)
Fnatic with their new addition, dennis, have so far successfully dispatched Luminosity and NiP with ease. They’ve played two maps and only conceded four rounds – against two teams who both beat pre-tournament favourite EnVyUs. This is their acid test and it comes in the form of CEVO champions Virtus Pro. VP beat Team Liquid 16-0 then came up against a resilient TSM team who battled their way to a 16-13 victory over the Poles. A Virtus Pro vs Liquid rematch decided who progressed out of the group and Virtus Pro brushed Liquid aside once again to find themselves in the Semi-Finals.
Will the stable Polish roster, with the return of Snax after missing IEM San Jose, get one over Fnatic on home soil? We think not, but Fnatic are painfully short at a best priced 3/10 (1.30). We’re going to go with the safe option of Virtus Pro getting a 1.5 map head start on the handicap. So they essentially start 1-0 up in maps. Should they win a single map, the bet wins. You can get 5/6 (1.83) with Skybet about them doing this. If you fancy being adventurous you could back Fnatic to win 2-1 at 11/5 with the same bookmaker. We prefer the handicap as it wins should Virtus Pro win the match also, which we wouldn’t like to rule out.
Virtus Pro +1.5 maps with Skybet at 5/6 (1.83)
Luminosity (12/5 32Red) v TSM (3/10 bet365)
After several high profile flops by we could never contemplate backing TSM to win this game at skinny prices. They’re prone to absolutely crumbling when under pressure. This is frustrating because they have the talent to be world champions, but they aren’t able to adapt when everything around them is caving in. They are painfully slow in using vitally important tactical timeouts, sometimes not even bothering at all as games quickly go from bad to worse.
On the other hand, Luminosity have finally shown themselves to be a capable best of three team. They got hammered by Fnatic and the general consensus was this wasn’t much of a shock, considering that brought in a new player just two days prior to the event.
They then went up against EnVyUs and beat them 2-1 in a Bo3. Let that sink in. Admittedly, EnVyUs didn’t show up, but losing to Luminosity 2-1? Really? Many people thought that it must be a fluke. But then they beat NiP in front of a noisy Swedish crowd 2-1. It should have really been 2-0 but they let a lead slip and lost in double overtime on their own map choice. NiP were trying, too, and they cared. This appears to be the swansong for NiP and they were visibly upset to lose the game.
We’re going to jump on the Luminosity bandwagon. They’re quickly becoming a fan favourite and whilst there won’t be crazy prices about like yesterday, they still appeared overpriced to beat TSM. You can get 12/5 with 32Red on Luminosity to win. You can also get 5/6 with Skybet on them to start with a 1-0 lead in maps. We think both of these are great value bets.