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Counter-StrikeCSRussia

Epicenter Finals Day — A return to winning ways

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Yesterday, Saturday October 28, saw the Semi-finals of Epicenter 2017: Saint Petersburg take place, with SK Gaming vs Astralis and G2 vs Virtus.pro. Today, we have the excitement of the Grand Finals and Third Place Playoff.
On paper the semi-finals could have been seen as a straight forward affair, with SK Gaming playing with 'stand-in' Ricardo "boltz" Prass, and Virtus.pro having not been in the best of form prior to the event.

However, as the group stages had shown us, here at Epicenter previous form does not appear to matter. In a game that was billed to go to three maps, the Brazilians were able to take the Danes' map pick of Train in regulation time, however they did require overtime in order to take their own map of Mirage. This meant the decider of Overpass was not needed.
Train (16 - 11) Mirage (19 - 17)


Next up we saw the team who are number 5 in the world, taking on the team in 13th, who had suffered a fall from grace before this event. In this second semi-final the adopted home town favorites of Virtus.pro were able to take their opponents map choice, Cache. But were unable to capitalize on this advantage as the French team won Nuke, the Polish sides' chosen map. The third map, Inferno would be needed to separate the two teams, and it was the bears of VP who overcame the French Samurai to book their place in the grand final!
Cache (9 - 16) Nuke (16 - 14) Inferno (10 - 16)


The two teams who were left disappointed in not being able to make the Final are not done yet, however, as there is a Third place playoff to contest, with the victorious side walking away with double the amount of prize money.

Third Place Decider

Nuke (16 - 14) Mirage (14 - 16) Inferno (11 - 16)


The game to bring this 'epic' event to a close, will of course be the Grand Final, in which the winners will be walking away with a quarter of a million dollars! What better way to decide who the best team at the event has been than a Best of 5.

Will we see a resurgent VP plowing themselves back to their old winning ways? Or will SK find the bolt they need to kickstart their quest to be the best?

Grand Final

Mirage (10 - 16) Inferno (16 - 6) Train (19 - 16) Cache (12 - 16) Cobblestone (22 - 18)

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William "draken" Sundin and Fredrik "REZ" Sterner spoke to us after their Semi-Final victory at IEM Oakland 2017; including what it's like to play with the legendary Ninjas!
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Counter-StrikeCSVideoInterview

HS: "We're gonna change the roles"

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Kevin "HS" Tarn tells us about OpTic's journey at IEM Oakland 2017, their coach, Chet "ImAPet" Singh, and how will OpTic change their players' roles.
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Edouard "SmithZz" Dubourdeaux and Richard "shox" Papillon took some time off their signing session to talk over the round-robin system, how teams approach the map pool, the current status of Counter-Strike competition, and who they pick as the IEM Oakland 2017 Champion!
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Moving into the second Semi-Final everyone was eager to find out who would be joining the Ninjas in Pyjamas in the Grand Final at IEM Oakland 2017.
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The first semi-final at IEM Oakland 2017, being held in the Oracle Arena sees a replay of the Grand Final of last year's IEM Oakland, in which the Swedish Ninjas in Pyjamas overcame the Brazilians of SK Gaming.
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Counter-StrikeCSVideoInterview

Twistzz: "Our mental coach made us think"

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Russel "Twistzz" Van Dulken told us about the groupstage of IEM Oakland 2017, Liquid's new mental coach, steel, and the future of Liquid's CS:GO roster.
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The Optic Gaming Coach Chet "ImAPet" Singh took to Twitter to announce that the Spanish player will return to AWPing full time.
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The Danish team decided to head home, as two of their group are experiencing health issues at the event in Oakland, California.
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It was announced on social media that the team who had just won their first international title were placing two members on the transfer list, one from their starting lineup.
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After a strong showing in their first tournament together, the team made up of two Danes, two Lithuanians and a Serbian, have decided to stick together.
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Now the Quarter-finals are over and done with IEM Oakland has a days break, and the event will return on Saturday in a new location. This time playing in front of the public at the Oracle Arena.
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With one Quarter-Final already taken care of for the day, it was time to decide the last Semi-Finalist.
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Season 26 of the ESEA Mountain Dew League is over, and the playoffs to decide who will get a chance in the ESL Pro League Relegation matches have been played.
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The currently teamless player will not feature at the WESG EU & CIS Regional Finals.
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The first Quarter-Final of the Intel Extreme Masters Oakland has a winner. There is only one more match needed to decide who will join the group winners in the Semi-Finals.
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The Counter-Strike veteran will be playing in the WESG Regional event held in Barcelona, Spain taking place from November 23-26.
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Counter-StrikeCSVideoHighlights

apEX ace with Five-SeveN vs. Faze on Cache

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The French G2-player Dan "apEX" Madesclaire takes down the entire of Faze to win the round in the ECS Season 4 Europe-match.
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After 2 days of intense action in the group stages at IEM Oakland we now know which teams will face each other in the playoffs.
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The second mammoth day of group stage play took place over the last eight or so hours, and we now have our finalised group standings.
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The North American organisation have announced they are releasing the 24-year old, who had been apart of the lineup since August.
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