IEM Rio: Day one as it happened
Tune in to our live updates from the happenings at the first tier-one tournament following the Major qualifiers, IEM Rio.
— Imperial are the first team to be eliminated
— fnatic, Vitality a loss away from elimination early
— NAVI got the first playoffs spot over Ninjas in Pyjamas
— BIG took down MOUZ and Heroic to make it to playoffs
— 9INE eliminated MOUZ in the lower bracket
04:05 - Nohte
MOUZ reduced the gap between them and 9INE with a few clean round victories, but the deficit was too much to overcome: the Poles came out victorious, 16-10, to send MOUZ packing from Rio in what is an immensely disappointing result for a team that beat FaZe and Virtus.pro just one week ago.
9INE have two more best-of-three games separating them from making the playoffs, and their path has only gotten more difficult now that BIG have knocked Heroic down to the lower bracket as well. Ninjas in Pyjamas are first in line to take on 9INE, however, with the next elimination battle going down at 23:00 on Tuesday.
No Paris, no problem
03:53 - Striker
BIG failed to qualify for the Paris Major just a few days ago, but now have taken down MOUZ and Heroic in rather convincing fashion to guarantee themselves a playoffs appearance at IEM Rio. They will face off against NAVI on Wednesday for a direct berth to the semi-finals.
"It feels amazing, finally we beat them," Nils "k1to" Gruhne said after beating Heroic for the first time with this core of players. "I checked the stats yesterday and we lost every single time against them, I think the last time we won was like two years ago. We're really happy now that we made playoffs."
BIG three rounds away from victory
03:44 - Striker
BIG kept punishing Heroic's CT-side aggression and got up to 11 rounds on the offense, before a pistol round win pushed them to 13. A halfbuy win on A has given the Danes a sliver of a chance, but it would take something special to come back from a 5-13 deficit on one of the most CT-sided maps of the pool.
Mickey MOUZ can't stop Goofy
03:42 - Nohte
MOUZ made an effort to thwart 9INE in the first half, but couldn't withstand numerous multi-kill rounds from Krzysztof "Goofy" Górski and Olek "hades" Miskiewicz. The European combine got their second round on the board thanks to a triple kill from David "frozen" Čerňanský and later added three in a row to their tally, but struggled to evade hades' AWP in the final rounds of the half as the Poles came out ahead, 10-5.
Heroic are trying to salvage a bad start on Overpass
03:22 - Striker
BIG have gotten off to a blistering start on the Terrorist side. From the first six rounds the closest Heroic got to winning one was a Casper "cadiaN" Møller attempt at an ace and 1v2 clutch that was halted in the final duel by Karim "Krimbo" Moussa. The Danes eventually broke the run thanks to a René "TeSeS" Madsen triple, but it's now getting away from them again.
Take a timeout, MOUZ
03:13 - Nohte
Things have been spiraling out of control for MOUZ ever since their pistol win on Nuke. An immediate answer back from 9INE allowed the Poles to seize control, and since then they've cruised to a 5-1 lead on the defense. MOUZ just took a timeout, so maybe some words from Dennis "sycrone" Nielsen can get them back in the game.
MOUZ swing a third map
02:52 - Nohte
Dorian "xertioN" Berman let up a bit in the second half, but the rest of MOUZ did not — Ádám "torzsi" Torzsás and frozen in particular went big for their side in a dominant CT side half, capitalizing on mistakes from 9INE to convert the map into a 16-9 victory. 9INE will walk away disappointed after conceding a 5vs3 situation on the B bombsite just when it looked like they could get the wind in their sails, from which point they won just one more round.
Nuke will decide which team will join Imperial on the trek home.
BIG close it with an eco win
02:43 - Striker
BIG hit map point early after the great first half, but closing out the match was turning out difficult with Heroic's defense looking near-impenetrable. Somehow, after dropping six out of seven rounds on the trot without much of a chance, they break through with just one saved gun and pistols around it.
We're heading to Overpass.
xertioN helps MOUZ plow through 9INE on T side of Ancient
02:28 - Nohte
MOUZ are up 10-5 on halftime on Ancient as xertioN helped to dismantle 9INE's defensive setups again and again. The Israeli rifler scored two pivotal multi-kill rounds to keep his team in the lead, and helped them score double digits in round 15 with a triple kill and 1vs2 clutch to close out the half.
BIG secure 10 on the CT side
02:16 - Striker
The first gunrounds went Heroic's way as the ever-explosive Danes consistently overpowered bombsites. Saving guns time and time again eventually paid its dividends for BIG, who shut down a few A bombsite hits with ease — one thanks to this beautiful transfer from k1to.
BIG win forcebuy wars to get early control of Nuke
01:57 - Striker
9INE extend Vertigo winstreak to ten
01:46 - Nohte
hades and company ran away with the second half of Vertigo, barely giving MOUZ a window back into the map. The Poles won seven rounds in a row with a stalwart defense to attain match point, and then put a halt to a brief comeback effort from MOUZ by winning a round with pistols to close out the game.
Can the Poles close things out on Ancient? That's a bit of a hard ask as they are currently on a seven-map losing streak on that battleground and it is MOUZ's go-to pick, but they'll have to do so if they want to avoid a Nuke decider.
Heroic break BIG's back with Tec-9s to win the first map
01:36 - Striker
Oh, that is a tough way to lose. BIG had the game in their hands, winning a key round to send Heroic on a low buy, but the Danes responded with just Tec-9s in hand and overpowered the A bombsite to give the Germans a taste of their own medicine. They won the firstmap off the back-breaking round after BIG had to fall back on shoddy buys.
BIG stop Heroic's streak to go 13-13
01:27 - Striker
3vs5s prove no problem as 9INE pull ahead by one at the half
01:21 - Nohte
9INE recovered from a 1-4 deficit and took control on the T side of their Vertigo pick, flipping two different 3vs5 situations into their favor to come out on top at the break, 8-7.
Did gob forget Rio is not a Major this time?
00:58 - Striker
It's the Majors where coaches aren't allowed to cheer their teams on, Fatih "gob b" Dayik. Anyway, a great recovery from BIG in the half. It was looking dire for them ever since they lost to a second-round forcebuy from Heroic, but a couple of well-timed A attacks got them back into the game and they're now trailing by just one round at halftime.
9INE and MOUZ meet for first time, elimination on the line
00:55 - Nohte
9INE impressed at the BLAST.tv Paris Major EU RMR and qualified for the Legends Stage with a 3-0 record, but suffered a setback upon landing in Rio after falling to Heroic, 12-16. MOUZ fared even worse as they were on the receiving end of a 6-16 battering by BIG, with the two teams now playing their first recorded official in a fight for their tournament lives.
Heroic vs. BIG next for a playoffs spot
00:30 - Striker
BIG seek their first-ever victory against this Heroic team. From six matches between them dating back a year, the Germans only won two in 12 maps. Last time around it was about as close as it could get at ESL Pro League Season 17, though, and the veto is similar this time — Vertigo first, Nuke next, and Overpass to decide.
Imperial are eliminated
00:28 - Sumljiv
They needed all 30 rounds, but they did it. TheMongolz have eliminated Imperial from IEM Rio and live to fight another day. They were 12-6 up at one point before Vinicius "VINI" Figueiredo's 1vs2 clutch gave a second wind to the Brazilians, but they ended up just short after Chinguun "hasteka" Bayarmaa stuck a ten-second defuse in the final round.
|Imperial||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|58 - 40||+18||74.6||1.28|
|54 - 43||+11||82.2||1.23|
|55 - 39||+16||74.6||1.22|
|48 - 45||+3||66.4||1.06|
|47 - 53||-6||75.3||1.06|
|TheMongolz||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|51 - 57||-6||83.0||1.12|
|47 - 46||+1||60.2||0.96|
|45 - 54||-9||72.2||0.86|
|46 - 58||-12||64.1||0.81|
|29 - 50||-21||46.2||0.67|
NAVI advance to IEM Rio playoffs
00:12 - Nohte
Natus Vincere are through to the playoffs of IEM Rio after beating Ninjas in Pyjamas 2-0, securing Mirage 16-10 before recovering from a deficit on Ancient and taking the map 16-13. A 1vs2 from Andrii "npl" Kukharskyi and triple kill spraydown from Valeriy "b1t" Vakhovskiy helped NAVI close things out on Ancient, with Denis "electroNic" Sharipov and Oleksandr "s1mple" Kostyliev stepping up throughout the series to keep their team ahead.
The Ukrainian side will play the winner of Heroic vs. BIG in the upper bracket final of Group A to determine whether they will start their bracket run from the opening round of playoffs or from the semi-finals, while Ninjas in Pyjamas have dropped to the lower bracket and need to win two best-of-threes if they hope to advance.
TheMongolz four rounds away from victory
00:00 - Sumljiv
TheMongolz's 9-6 half and following pistol victory to start off their defense means they are now just four rounds away from eliminating the Brazilian sweethearts of Imperial. The Brazilians now need to hope their experience will get them over the line.
electronic's superb performance continues as NAVI fight back
23:55 - Nohte
Ninjas in Pyjamas have had a hard time of things in the second half of Ancient as electroNic has continued to shine bright for NAVI: The 24-year-old captain has repeatedly found multi-kills to recover rounds for his side, and they are now nearing victory at 13-11.
TheMongolz take early lead
23:42 - Sumljiv
TheMongolz started Mirage on the offense, which proved to be their favored side in this series so far. They won the pistol and kept the lead throughout, with the scoreline currently standing at 7-4.
The game continues to be a brawl, with both teams winning unfavored rounds such as this 2vs2, where Garidmagnai "bLitz" Byambasuren planted in the final second of the round to give TheMongolz a two-round lead.
9-6 lead for NIP on Ancient
23:36 - Nohte
A back-and-forth battle for control at the end of the half saw neither team able to string together multiple round wins. NAVI almost managed to bring themselves within one round of their European opponents, but got caught out on timing in round 15 in round that fell apart and went the way of NIP for a 9-6 lead.
NIP lead on Ancient, but NAVI are finding their footing
23:23 - Nohte
Ninjas in Pyjamas got off to a spectacular start on Ancient, initially winning five rounds in a row on their CT side before Ludvig "Brollan" Brolin helped his side get a sixth on the board in answer to Natus Vincere's first gun round win. However, that lead is slipping away thanks to quad and triple kill rounds from electroNic, with NIP looking to defend their lead (7-4).
We go to Mirage
23:07 - Sumljiv
TheMongolz did just enough to close out Inferno 16-12 against Imperial. It wasn't a pretty half, but new addition hasteka found two crucial multi-kills to get his team on to map point. Once on 15, they lost a 1vs3 clutch against Jhonatan "JOTA" Willian but converted at the next opportunity, shutting down a B attack to tie up the series.
NAVI close out Mirage off the back of b1t's multi-kills
22:50 - Nohte
It looked hairy for a second as Ninjas in Pyjamas began to find their footing on the defense, making up for losing the second pistol round of Mirage by piecing together strong defenses to deny NAVI entry in bombsites round after round. s1mple ended up just short of a 1vs4 clutch as NIP closed in on double digits, but b1t stepped up massively with a triple kill and 1vs2 clutch to convert a halfbuy and put NAVI back in control.
From there, the Ukrainian team didn't let up, conceding just one more round en route to a 16-10 finish to move the series on to their own pick of Ancient.
TheMongolz lead at the half
22:33 - Sumljiv
They were able to exploit the B site round after round, with a final rush of the site netting them a seven-round lead as they move on to the defense. It remains to be seen if they have a game plan on how to stop the Imperial T side, though.
electronic stars as NAVI lead 10-5 at halftime
22:24 - Nohte
electroNic's good form continued for the rest of the half as he secured a key triple kill with a salvaged AK-47 to help his side steal away a pistol round, and later added on to his tally with an anti-eco ace. He sits upon a 18-9 K-D and mustered 112.3 ADR as NAVI lead by five rounds heading into their T side.
TheMongolz 7-1 Imperial
22:19 - Sumljiv
In a complete switch up from Overpass, TheMongolz are looking absolutely dominant on Inferno. They are currently 7-1 up on the offense led by chess-master bLitz and are looking to force the series onto Mirage.
NAVI maintain lead despite Aleksib's heroics
22:07 - Nohte
A phenomenal start from electroNic has kept Natus Vincere in the lead, despite Ninjas in Pyjamas stringing together three rounds off the back of an eco round victory helped by a quad kill from Aleksi "Aleksib" Virolainen.
Imperial dominate Overpass, NAVI-NIP underway
21:52 - Sumljiv
Imperial in control of Overpass
21:35 - Sumljiv
Imperial secured the first half of their map pick without trouble, only losing three rounds against the Mongolian side.
Ricardo "boltz" Prass has been crucial in the success by posting 21 kills and 129 ADR, continuing his great form from the Americas RMR, where he averaged a 1.39 rating across five maps of play.
FURIA have done it
21:29 - Sumljiv
After the teams couldn't be separated during regulation, FURIA were flawless in overtime and closed out the game 19-15. Andrei "arT" Piovezan was crucial in the victory, winning seven opening duels with his trademark aggressive style that paid off in this instance.
FURIA's scrappy victory marks the first home-team success at IEM Rio, and the Brazilians now move on to the upper bracket semi against FaZe. Conversely, fnatic drop down to face 9z in an elimination game.
|FURIA||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|28 - 21||+7||87.8||1.34|
|24 - 19||+5||64.0||1.11|
|21 - 20||+1||67.9||1.08|
|24 - 26||-2||85.6||1.05|
|20 - 23||-3||75.7||0.93|
|fnatic||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|26 - 25||+1||85.4||1.18|
|23 - 20||+3||80.1||1.18|
|24 - 23||+1||73.2||0.98|
|19 - 23||-4||62.9||0.86|
|16 - 26||-10||55.3||0.76|
We are going to overtime
21:17 - Sumljiv
First elimination series starts between Imperial and TheMongolz
21:07 - Striker
Group A heads to the first elimination matches, played in best-of-three series. Hometown heroes and last-minute addition Imperial fight for survival against TheMongolz after losing their opening matches of the group earlier today. Overpass first (Imperial's pick), Inferno next, and Mirage to decide, if needed.
Scores tied at 10-10
20:57 - Sumljiv
In the midst of the action, Chad "SPUNJ" Burchill found some time to try out for his impressive Zeus impression. Check it out below, you won't regret it.
broky +2 rating as FaZe plow past 9z
20:36 - LucasAM
FaZe did not fret for a second to claim their spot in the Group B upper bracket semi-finals, thrashing 9z 16-3 on Overpass. They are now waiting for the victor FURIA vs. fnatic, whom they will play to secure a spot at IEM Rio playoffs.
The Argentine squad on the other hand are now 0-1, in the lower bracket, and will face the loser of the aforementioned match to keep their hope of playing in front of the Brazilian crowd alive.
|FaZe||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|24 - 7||+17||123.9||2.02|
|18 - 9||+9||103.7||1.62|
|21 - 8||+13||106.2||1.59|
|13 - 10||+3||78.4||1.23|
|10 - 10||0||54.4||0.97|
|9z||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|12 - 17||-5||76.4||0.83|
|11 - 17||-6||72.8||0.82|
|10 - 18||-8||58.3||0.72|
|5 - 18||-13||42.6||0.47|
|6 - 16||-10||30.8||0.41|
fnatic and FURIA neck and neck
20:35 - Sumljiv
After a strong start by the Brazilians, facilitated by an eco victory in the fourth round, fnatic started reducing the deficit. The score now stands at 5-6, as the European combine put together a three-round streak.
FaZe far ahead at the half
20:25 - LucasAM
FaZe lost their first defense in the eighth round, after which they quickly recovered and continued to pound their opposition. Helvijs "broky" Saukants had another big round after his opening pistol quad-kill, downing four more in the 13th round before 9z closed the half with a final tally, making it 12-3 in FaZe's favor.
Will FURIA secure Brazil's first win?
20:12 - Sumljiv
The two teams met less than a month ago at ESL Pro League S17, where the Brazilians ended up 2-0 winners. They played Ancient and Anubis then, with the former also the chosen map for this match.
FaZe dominate 9z in the early rounds
20:09 - LucasAM
FaZe came into the series against 9z with the tag of heavy favorites and Finn "karrigan" Andersen’s men are not fretting for a second. broky’s four kills in the pistol round with Dual Berettas opened the floodgate for a dominant defense of Overpass.
9z called a timeout when down 0-6 and found themselves in a 3vs3 situation the following round, but to no avail as a Russel "Twistzz" Van Dulken triple ended their dreams of getting on the board in a pistol buy.
FaZe take on 9z next
19:55 - Striker
OG condemn Vitality to lower bracket
19:53 - Nohte
Two rounds at the start of overtime proved not to be enough for Vitality to close out the map as OG showed renewed form, shutting down their European counterparts for the next three rounds. It seemed as if Vitality could force a second set of extra rounds, but Shahar "flameZ" Shushan capitalized on an overpeek from Dan "apEX" Madesclaire to clutch a 1vs2 and close things out for his side, 19-17.
nafany: "We don't have a lot of time for rest"
19:40 - Striker
Cloud9's in-game leader briefly reflected in an interview on the broadcast on the team's failure to qualify for the Major and what it has been like to fly over to Rio almost immediately following the RMR disappointment.
"Of course it's kinda hard, we don't have a lot of time for rest, because we had a flight on the next day," Vladislav "nafany" Gorshkov told James "BanKs" Banks. "But we have what we have and we must work to do better."
Vitality squander their lead, but force overtime
19:38 - Nohte
A pivotal half-buy round from OG cracked open the Vitality defenses and proved to be the catalyst in getting Abdul "degster" Gasanov and company back into the match — they won five rounds in a row from that point to claim match point, but aggression at playground and a strong hold of the B bombsite allowed Vitality to force overtime.
Cloud9 move on in the upper bracket
19:33 - Striker
Cloud9, Vitality close in on victories
19:22 - Nohte
Vitality's good form carried into the second half with a pistol win and subsequent conversion before OG answered back with three of their own. The deficit didn't close by too much, however, as a cheeky re-boost from Lotan "Spinx" Giladi put his team back in control.
HEN1 heroics not enough to keep Cloud9 away
19:09 - Striker
Cloud9 end the first half of Ancient up 9-6, putting together a solid offense after losing the opening three rounds. Some Henrique "HEN1" Teles heroics have kept MIBR in the fight, but 10 rounds on the T side now look like a bit too tall of a task for the underdogs.
ZywOo, apEX power Vitality to 9-6 half
19:03 - Nohte
Vitality have claimed a three-round lead at the end of their T side effort on Overpass, led by 16-8 and 15-10 K-Ds from Mathieu "ZywOo" Herbaut and apEX. Maciej "F1KU" Miklas leads on the other side for OG (15-11), but it was degster who repeatedly found opening kills in the first half to keep his team in the running.
OG close the gap, but Vitality remain ahead
18:51 - Nohte
Four rounds on the trot from OG, including a strong opening round in connector, has kept the scoreline close. degster and company managed to tie things up at 4-4, but have yet to take the lead as Vitality found two rounds of their own to stay ahead.
kakafu standing behind OG
18:39 - Nohte
Tournament moves on to Group B
18:35 - Striker
Group A openers are done and dusted and the tournament continues with the best-of-one phase of Group B. Up first are two teams who made it to the Paris Major last week, Vitality vs. OG, and two teams who did not, Cloud9 vs. MIBR.
|IEM Rio 2023|
Heroic secure opening victory
18:26 - Sumljiv
In the post-match interview, Rasmus "sjuush" Beck talked about the Danes playing their worst map. "It wasn't a surprise. Because they lost five in a row on Ancient, we felt really comfortable with the map pick."
|IEM Rio 2023|
BIG knock MOUZ down to lower bracket
16:19 - LucasAM
BIG secured an important first match victory over MOUZ. The German squad, who just recently missed out on a spot at the upcoming Major, mentioned that an event like IEM Rio is now more important for them before the match kicked off. BIG on Christopher "dexter" Nong and company on Overpass, a map Johannes "tabseN" Wodarz wasn’t expecting to be left open in the veto, and made the best of it, winning 16-6.
"We felt very confident on Overpass before, we played this map well before” tabseN said about the veto, “we knew their Overpass wasn’t the best so I was surprised they let it go through."
|BIG||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|20 - 15||+5||114.4||1.62|
|20 - 10||+10||83.7||1.39|
|15 - 12||+3||68.1||1.34|
|19 - 14||+5||82.2||1.32|
|11 - 9||+2||47.9||1.00|
|MOUZ||K - D||+/-||ADR||Rating 2.0|
|15 - 14||+1||82.9||1.07|
|16 - 17||-1||77.8||0.95|
|11 - 18||-7||68.7||0.70|
|10 - 17||-7||50.1||0.57|
|7 - 19||-12||42.1||0.40|
BIG barely deny MOUZ forcebuy, go up 13-6
18:04 - LucasAM
BIG continue to charge ahead and are three rounds away from putting MOUZ away after winning a very close 3vs4 retake against a forcebuy. The round ended with frozen killing both the last defender and the defuser, but just a fraction of a second too late as the bomb was dismantled by the time his spray put down the final counter terrorist player.
faveN quad-kill puts BIG on double digits with CT pistol win
17:55 - LucasAM
BIG increased their three round half-time lead, 9-6, by winning the first pistol round after the switch in a massive round for Josef "faveN" Baumann. The German player downed four enemies with his P2000 to start the defense on the right foot as he and his team hit double digits.
Heroic run away with CT half
17:50 - Sumljiv
The scores remained close until 4-4, but Heroic then took the game by the scruff of the neck and ran away with the half. It certainly wasn't smooth sailing for the Danes, however, as they won three rounds in a row with just one member surviving, meaning their economy was always at breaking point.
Heroic weathered the storm and are 11-4 up at the half, so it looks like the Ancient gamble is paying off for them.
BIG secure the half-time lead on T side
17:45 - LucasAM
Heroic and 9INE trade rounds
17:32 - Sumljiv
IEM Rio more important for BIG since missing out on Major
17:20 - LucasAM
|IEM Rio 2023|
Krimbo stepped behind the mic to talk about the importance of a tournament like IEM Rio after failing to make the Major.
"If you don’t make the Major, these events are more important now so we give our best. You win two matches and you’re in the playoffs directly… We have a tough bracket with MOUZ and the winner of Heroic vs. 9INE."
Heroic vs. 9INE begins
17:18 - Sumljiv
Ancient is the battleground, a map where neither team looks very comfortable. The Danes have a 25% win rate, while the Poles are only slightly better at 31%.
Look at the power stance from npl
17:03 - Striker
Young npl exudes a lot more confidence than before after his impressive performance at the BLAST.tv Paris Major RMRs, where he topped the charts in NAVI's qualification campaign.
In an interview with BanKs on the ESL broadcast, the 17-year-old briefly spoke about the game, saying it might have come a bit too early. "They [TheMongolz] managed to kill us in very strange moments from smokes. We were also playing a bit bad because it's an early game, 11 AM, so maybe that's it."
"Not bad. We won, by the way."
NIP complete convincing victory, NAVI dominate TheMongolz on T side
16:54 - King Dempz
Straightforward for Ninjas in Pyjamas, they take their T pistol and run away with the match. They simply had too much firepower for Imperial, and the Brazilians’ dated style of play didn’t help matters. 16-5 the score finished.
TheMongolz stay within touching distance with a halfbuy win
16:45 - Striker
Natus Vincere were starting to pull away after a pistol round win on the T side before a halfbuy win and Deagle shots from Tuvshintugs "Annihilation" Nyamdorj gave TheMongolz a breather. Still, the favorites are in control, now pressuring the Mongolians' economy after answering back immediately.
NIP pull away at back end of second half
16:36 - King Dempz
Almost as soon as we post an update saying it’s evenly matched, Ninjas in Pyjamas start to pull away on Mirage.
TheMongolz head into second half ahead 8-7
16:30 - Striker
bLitz and company won seven out of the last nine rounds of the half to take the lead on Mirage Terrorist side. Explosive plays towards A surprised NAVI at the end as the pressure begins to mount on them heading into the second half.
Just like that, it's even between NAVI and TheMongolz
16:25 - Striker
NAVI have been a bit sloppy and let a couple of advantageous rounds slip. bLitz has produced some key picks and closers for the Mongolians to turn it around from 1-6 to 6-6 — the in-game leader sits at 17 kills in 12 rounds.
NIP and Imperial neck and neck early doors
16:22 - King Dempz
Ninjas in Pyjamas appeared to get off to a comfy start, winning their first couple CT rounds with ease, but two straightforward walks out onto A grabbed Imperial two in response and broke the CT economy.
Everything to play for here, both teams seem evenly matched thus far.
NAVI in control early
16:14 - Striker
Natus Vincere are cruising through Mirage so far. The only round they lost was to a shoddy buy from the Mongolian squad and some well-placed shots from Baatarkhuu "Bart4k" Batbold. A few other close rounds went the favorites' way though and it's slowly getting out of hand for TheMongolz.
TheMongolz vs. NAVI, Imperial vs. NIP live
16:03 - Striker
The first two matches are live and both are on Mirage.
On one side, TheMongolz look to see if their new lineup with hasteka is still capable of challenging tier-one teams as they face off against Natus Vincere. On the other, Imperial go up against Ninjas in Pyjamas after coming in as a last-minute replacement for Virtus.pro.
15:50 - Striker
We're in for a round of best-of-ones to start
15:45 - Striker
It hasn't even been 48 hours since the BLAST.tv Paris Major RMRs came to a conclusion with the European last-chance qualifier, but the tier-one circus is already on the move again and starting all over at IEM Rio.
The Brazilian tournament takes place over the following week and will see many of the teams who succeeded at the RMRs return with hopes to get a good result on the board before the Paris Major itself comes.
For others who did not make it to the premier competition, such as the ill-fated Cloud9, the $250,000 tournament offers a chance at respite and one to prove they still belong to the top echelons of Counter-Strike despite the immense disappointment.
The event kicks off with a round of best-of-ones in the opening phase of the group stage before we get to elimination and advancement series to end the long first day of play. Here's a schedule of day one of IEM Rio:
|IEM Rio 2023|