Astralis top Group D over Liquid
Astralis are through to the playoffs from first place in Group D after beating Liquid 2-1 (Mirage 14-16, Overpass 16-3, Cache 16-3).
The last series of the day began on Mirage, with Astralis picking up a 3-0 lead on the back of Lukas "gla1ve" Rossander's 1v1 clutch in the pistol round. Liquid quickly gained control of the economy, fending off a few slow-paced attacks from the Danes to grab five rounds in a row.
Switching up the speed, Astralis strung together two rounds, but great aggression and rotations from Liquid and a triple from Russel "Twistzz" Van Dulken, who had saved a gun in the previous round, in an eco saw the North American side gain three more rounds before the half ended to go 8-7.
Nicolai "device" Reedtz's triple in the second pistol put the Danish team in the lead, but the gunrounds were once again firmly in the hands of Liquid, who only lost an anti-eco on the way to map point, with Keith "NAF" Markovic and Twistzz clutching two rounds along the way. Astralis came alive with their backs against the wall and clawed back to 14-15, but the last round saw them lose a 5v2 advantage to Jonathan "EliGE" Jablonowski and NAF to go 0-1 in the series.
On Astralis' pick, Overpass, gla1ve once again kicked off the map with a crucial play in the pistol round, a triple-kill on the B bombsite, as well as a double entry in the first gunround. The map started getting out of hand for Liquid, as the Danes kept forcing Liquid to save their weapons, cruising to an 11-1 lead.
Although Nick "nitr0" Cannella & co. clinched two of the last three rounds of the half, losing the second pistol round meant they would have to forcebuy throughout the rest of the match, which proved unsuccessful, as Astralis powered to a 16-3 victory.
The deciding map was Cache, where Astralis added their fifth pistol round win of the series on the back of three kills from Emil "Magisk" Reif. After a couple of ecos, Liquid grabbed their first round, courtesy of NAF's 1v1 clutch, but their economy got reset immediately.
It soon started looking like another blowout was on the cards, as another reset came in once Liquid won their second round at 7-2, and Astralis ran away with the half 13-2. With a sixth pistol round on the board, they quickly clinched match point and shortly after the match itself at 16-3, when device triumphed in a 1v4 situation.
K - D
Jonathan 'EliGE' JablonowskiEliGE
47 - 53
Keith 'NAF' MarkovicNAF
46 - 46
Russel 'Twistzz' Van DulkenTwistzz
34 - 51
Epitacio 'TACO' de MeloTACO
37 - 57
Nick 'nitr0' Cannellanitr0
27 - 50