The second Intel Extreme Masters event this year is kicking off tomorrow in Sydney. It will gather teams like FaZe Clan, Team Liquid, Fnatic, and so on, together at one place. In this article, you can learn all you need to know about IEM XIV Sydney.
Format and rules
IEM XIV Sydney will have 16 teams who are going to compete against each other in two double-elimination groups. Each group will have eight teams seeded according to ESL CS:GO rankings. Unlike in Single-elimination Round Robin groups, GSL groups have two separated brackets – Upper and Lower Bracket.
When a team loses a match in the Upper bracket, the team goes down to the Lower Bracket where they have another chance to advance further. Two loses basically means that the team is out of the event. Initial matches are played only on one map, and all other matches are Best of 3 excluding Grand Final which is Best of 5. Teams who win groups are going directly to Semi-final, and the second and third teams have to play Quarter-finals.
We can say that IEM XIV Sydney is a half-invitational event as organizers invited eight teams. Other eight teams came to the biggest city of Australia through different Qualifiers. Also, Team Heroic secured their spot at the main event after they won GG.Bet Sydney Invitational, and Chiefs Esports Club won IEM Sydney Derby to compete as a domestic team.
Prize pool and stream coverage
Considering that this event is part of Intel Extreme Masters series, CS:GO community considers it to be a very important and valuable event although it lacks two best teams in the world, Astralis and Natus Vincere. Astralis skipped so many events recently and IEM XIV Sydney is one of them. The reason behind their schedule is dev1ce’s health issues as well as some other things.
The prize pool of this tournament will be $250,000. The team who lift a trophy in Australia will get $100,000, and runner-up will secure $42,000.
Alongside competitive matches, there is going to a showmatch played by former players and commentators from England and Australia. These two teams are going to face each other on the last day of the tournament, May 5th, right before Grand Final. The captain of Team Australia will be SPUNJ and HenryG is going to lead Team England. Other team members are going to be determined.
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When it comes to stream coverage, there are going to be two Twitch streams in English. You can watch these streams on ESL CS:GO Twitch channel. Broadcast talent will feature some familiar faces like SPUNJ, Frankie, HenryG, moses, and so on.
The time zone in Sydney is AEST, so make sure that you calculated time difference precisely. If you are going to watch IEM XIV Sydney from Europe, you’ll have to wake up early in order to catch these games, but if you are from America, you need to stay late at night.
If you wonder why there is no Swole Patrol at IEM XIV Sydney, you should know that ESL decided to give NA Qualifier slot to eUnited as they signed the majority of Swole’s squad, although those guys won NA Qualifier under Swole’s logo. This is generally a big problem in CS:GO, and Cloud9 will lose their spot at next Major because of the same reason.
It is questionable if that’s the right thing to do. Nevertheless, that will stay a problem as transfers are not really regulated by any organization in CS:GO.
Two FaZe Clan members have visa issues as well. NiKo and AdreN will miss the first day, and they will be replaced by FaZe’s coach, YNk and local player USTILO.
The most interesting match in the first round will probably be a duel between mousesports and BIG. On paper, these two teams are closest to each other among all other first round pairs. It is going to be a very interesting match, and it’s actually too bad that one of these two teams has to drop to Lower Bracket so early.
— Intel®ExtremeMasters (@IEM) April 29, 2019
Team Liquid will probably have an easy job against BOOT.ds in the first round, and domestic team, Renegades should overcome MVP PK. A duel between NiP and eUnited will be tricky as NiP failed badly at the last event. Nonetheless, they are favorites to win that match.
In Group B, FaZe is not going to have an easy ride in the first round taking all into account. First of all, they will miss two players and will face a domestic team. Plus, the first match is Best of 1, which makes upset more possible. Anyway, they should best Chiefs given that they are a much stronger team.
NRG will have to confront ViCi Gaming who knows how to upset big names. If NRG wants to win that game, they need to be on 100%. In the remaining two matches, Fnatic and MiBR are front runners versus Heroic and Grayhound.