NRG defeated Astralis 2-1 today in Group A of the ESL Pro League season nine finals.
This result allows NRG to advance directly into the tournament’s semifinals, while Astralis will have to play tomorrow in the quarterfinals.
The series started on Train, NRG’s map pick. The North Americans recovered from a bad T-side where they only won five rounds. Cvetelin “CeRq” Dimitrov was NRG’s main force. The AWPer absolutely carried his teammates with 31 kills and NRG won seven rounds in a row to clinch the 16-13 victory.
The match proceeded to Nuke, one of the Danes’ best maps. Astralis showed that they’re still strong on it—NRG only won five rounds on their CT-side. Nicolai “device” Reedtz dropped 30 frags, leading Astralis to an easy 16-8 win.
But NRG recovered with a great performance on Dust II, scoring eight rounds and only losing one at the beginning of their CT-side. Astralis almost pulled off the comeback in the second half as the game was 12-11 in NRG’s favor. But the North Americans held strong and won their final T-side rounds. Vincent “Brehze” Cayonte showed up with 25 kills and NRG won 16-12.
This is definitely an upset because NRG are playing their last event with in-game leader Damian “daps” Steele. He was cut from the team on June 11 and NRG signed Peter “stanislaw” Jarguz for future tournaments. They aren’t even practicing with daps anymore since the squad prefers to train with stanislaw already.
Astralis arrived at the ESL Pro League season nine finals after a disappointing performance at the ECS season seven finals, where they were surprisingly knocked out by FURIA.
Astralis won’t have much time to rest since they play tomorrow at 11:50am CT against Team Liquid or MIBR. NRG’s next match will be in the semifinals on Saturday, June 22 at 8am CT.