It’s time for Group B to kick off, and we bring you an ELEAGUE betting preview of the first day’s matches. As the first round of matches only determine seeding, there’s less incentive to pull out all the stops, but both NiP and G2 would prefer to go into the knockout in good form and hopefully face Selfless rather than OpTic.
The latter named side kick off proceedings against NiP and it’s a match which is priced up quite accurately. Odds of 2/5 (1.40) aren’t particularly tempting on NiP to win both maps, and the -5.5 round handicap, priced at 1.79 on both maps, isn’t quite juicy enough to tempt us in given the motivation factor. As such, this is a game we’ll leave alone.
G2 (1/7 Pinnacle) vs Selfless (68/1 Pinnacle), Draw (9/2)
On recent form, there’s a strong case to be made for G2 being the second best team in the world. It makes little sense to compare the pre and post-Ex6TenZ G2 rosters, given the huge difference in Kevin “Ex6TenZ” Droolans execute heavy leadership style to that of Richard “shox” Papillon. His loose game has seen the Frenchmen marry their second placed finish at ESL Pro League Season 3 Finals with some excellent online form. Since their impressive display in London they have beaten NiP, Fnatic, Team Dignitas and Virtus.pro without dropping a map. There’s nothing to suggest this will change against Selfless, who by our reckoning are the longest priced team to win a series in the history of CS:GO.
Selfless are the whipping boys of the group. Their offline form is poor, with mediocre showings at the MLG America Minor and Dreamhack Austin. At CEVO Gfinity, they couldn’t take more than 6 rounds from either Dignitas or SK Gaming. If it weren’t for the Chinese side, TyLoo, suffering visa issues, they wouldn’t be taking part in ELEAGUE. After this match, they’ll wish they weren’t. The addition of Connor “Connor” Glover might help in the long run, but they won’t be drilled with him in the lineup for this event. Given that G2 will be able to remove their two least favoured maps, you’d fancy the French side to win by a scoreline of at most 16-8 on both maps. We’re getting a fair price for them to do so with Betway.
G2 (5/2 Ladbrokes) vs NiP (11/5 Pinnacle), Draw (10/11)
G2’s opposition in their second map is of a different calibre, but again we fancy them to do the business. They’ll be looking to repeat their online success which saw them defeat the ninjas 16-13 on Dust2 and 16-14 on Train a week ago. Shox and Adil “ScreaM” Benrlitom are the most exciting duo in CounterStrike, whilst Cedric “RpK” Guipouy is showing glimpses of his CS:Source prowess and has developed into one of the most consistent role players around.
That’s not to take anything away from NiP. They’ve proven themselves to be one of the best teams in the world, and prior to G2’s upturn in form would be favoured. After recent defeats to Fnatic and FaZe they don’t seem at the very top of their game and they will need to be. On the chance that they are not, the odds against available about G2 on the handicap (to win 16-13 or better on both maps) is too big to pass up. Key to G2s success will be the form of Edouard “SmithZz” Dubourdeaux with the AWP. If he can contribute more than in their recent online fixture, G2 should come good.