Cloud9 and Ninjas in Pyjamas were the two teams to have proceeded through to the semi-finals of EPL S4 over their respective opponents in the round of six.
After the conclusion of the group stage of ESL Pro League Season 4, four teams were left to play out decider matches that would determine the two teams that would be joining existing semi-finalists Mousesports and SK Gaming in the semi-finals of the tournament. Said teams were Ninjas in Pyjamas, Team EnVyUs, OpTic Gaming and Cloud9. Both best-of-three series have been settled in a total of four maps, with the Swedish Ninjas in Pyjamas and North America’s finest Cloud9 emerging as the two contenders for a spot in the Grand Final of EPL S4.
Below we present you a synopsis of the matches that took place:
ESL Pro League Season 4 – Round of six
The first match of the day between the Swedish and French powerhouses. The Ninjas in Pyjamas took us back to the year 2014, a time when the team was known as the best on de_Nuke. It seems the Swedes are trying to reinstate this title as they pick the rarely seen map and run away with it. The Swedes initialise on the CT side of Nuke, where the team is able to absolutely demolish their French opponents. Seldom were EnVyUs able to retaliate, granting the defending side an extensive 13:2 lead prior to the second half of the map. The Frenchmen hop over to the defending side, where the team is able to fend off the Swedes on many occasions; however it was abundantly clear that there was no chance of comeback as the Swedes needed but three rounds to run away with the map. So they did, landing the Ninjas a 16:9 victory on their once favourite map.
Next was the only map that saw an overtime in the deciding matches – de_Dust2. Both teams were aware of the stakes on the table, creating an ever increasing pressure. The initial half saw the Ninjas on the aggression, where the team successfully demonstrated a strong T side. Rounds were stacking up against the Frenchmen, further the intrigue. The half was cut at 11:4 in favour of the Swedes, leaving the French rather envious. To the Swedes dismay EnVyUs woke up and started showing results. They were consistently landing rounds and securing bomb plants, all the way to a 15:15 stalemate. In the concluding overtime, of which we only saw one, the Swedes managed to hit the French hard with a 4:2 score on the board. The Ninjas in Pyjamas secure their position as a semi-finalist after taking away de_Dust2 with a 19:17 score.
The last series of the day saw a particularly impressive performance from Cloud9. It all kicked off on the CT side of de_Dust2 for Cloud9, where the team seemed very focused and composed. Rounds consistently went in favour of Cloud9, allowing for a strong half time finish of 10:5. OpTic Gaming were not happy with the performance which undeniably showed in the second half, where the team attempted to mount a comeback of sorts; however it seemed to be the case that the guys from Cloud9 were prepared for all sorts of advances from the Ts, closing out the first map on a fairly close 16:12.
Closing out the series was a phenomenal de_Cobblestone performance from Cloud9 and on the contrary a complete disaster for OpTic Gaming. Cloud9 set out on the CT side of the map, forming an impenetrable barrier to entry for their opponent. OpTic could not come up with the right strategy or reads on their opponent, severely crippling their chances at securing a victory on the map. Progressively the situation got worse for the North American mix as the score spiralled out of control in favour of Cloud9. OpTiC are utterly despondent facing a 2:13 deficit. Cloud9 decide not to prolong the suffering of their fellow North Americans and dealt a coup de grâce, securing the pistol round, as well as the two following rounds, resulting in a spectacular 16:2 finish for the team.
This evening you may witness the semi-finals and Grand Final of ESL Pro League Season 4. Below you will find the full schedule for the remaining three best-of-three series of the tournament:
Images courtesy of ESL
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