Intel® Extreme Masters (IEM) Rio 2023 has come to a thrilling end, with Team Vitality emerging victorious after an intense competition between 16 of the best Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) teams from around the world. The competition was held from April 17-23, and the final three days took place in front of a passionate crowd at the iconic Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
The Group Stage began on April 17, with the participating teams competing in two groups of eight. The six best teams – BIG, Cloud9, FURIA, Heroic, Natus Vincere, and Team Vitality – then proceeded to the live Playoffs on April 21-23, where they faced off against each other in front of an energetic crowd. In the first Semi Final, Team Vitality completed the reverse sweep over Cloud9 to advance to the Grand Final on April 23. During the other Semi Final, Heroic managed to close out the match with back-to-back rounds, 16-9, meaning they secured their spot as Finalists of an IEM competition in the Brazilian coastal city for the second time.
Team Vitality kicked off the Grand Final strong by winning the first seven rounds back-to-back, and managed to fend off a powerful Heroic comeback to clinch the first game on Vertigo. In the second round, things were looking good for Team Vitality, but Heroic came back strong to tie the match after 11 rounds. However, this wasn’t enough to stop the French organization from claiming their deserved place as the Intel® Extreme Masters Rio 2023 champions, and denying Heroic their first IEM title.
After a hard-fought and exciting match, Team Vitality beat Heroic, with a score of 2-0 winning the coveted trophy and taking home the lion’s share of the $250,000 prize pool and a win in the race to the Intel® Grand Slam V and its $1,000,000 cash prize. As the winners of IEM Rio 2023, they join G2 Esports and FaZe Clan as the third team to qualify for a spot in the Group Stage of IEM Cologne 2023. Team Vitality player, Mathieu “ZywOo” Herbaut, also secured the DHL MVP award which is judged on a combination of player performance, fan voting, and broadcast talent voting.
Starting the Group Stage from the lower bracket, Team Vitality defeated MIBR, FaZe Clan, and OG, 2-0, 2-0, 2-1, respectively to qualify for the Playoffs which saw the international squad only lose one game throughout the final phase of the tournament.
Team Vitality’s Dan “apEX” Madesclaire commented: “I’m proud of the boys but what we need to remember is that last time, we won the last tournament before the Major and we messed up. So, now we know what [we] have to do. It’s a game of confidence for sure and I think we were the better team today.
I think the biggest improvement we had was our map pool, right now it is getting really good. We worked a lot on our weakest map; this shows it. That’s one tournament win in 2023 and I hope for some more.”
Fans from Brazil and beyond had the opportunity to experience the excitement of the competition live during the Playoff Stage and witness the top teams in action. IEM Rio 2023 saw a peak viewership of more than 562,000* and attracted more than 15,000 fans over the final three days.
Local favorites FURIA, MIBR, and Imperial Sportsbet thrilled the home crowds, showing their skills and determination against top-tier teams from around the world. FURIA managed to get all the way through to the quarterfinals where they were eventually defeated by Heroic, while both MIBR and Imperial Sportsbet got eliminated after losing their first two matches.
While at IEM Rio, fans around the world got to see some of their favourite players compete in a one-off show match on Counter Strike 2 with Team Brasil, featuring Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo, Epitácio “TACO” de Melo, and Kaike “KSCERATO” Cerato, going against Team World, including Christopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund and Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyljev. In the end, Team World bagged the win with a result of 16-8.
Next up in the ESL Pro Tour for CS:GO are the currently ongoing ESL Challenger League Season 45 concluding on May 28, ESL Challenger Melbourne in Melbourne, Australia, on April 28 – 30, and IEM Dallas 2023 in Dallas, Texas, USA, on May 29 – June 4. For more information the latest updates about ESL’s CS:GO esports ecosystem, head to the official ESL Pro Tour website, and follow ESL CS on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
*According to Escharts
PUBG MOBILE Global Championship Grand Finals Day 2: Alpha 7 Take The Lead, D’Xavier In Close Second
Today saw the second day of the 2023 PUBG MOBILE Global Championship Grand Finals, live from Istanbul, Türkiye, which featured more exciting action as Alpha7 took the competition lead early and stayed on top. They are now closely followed by D’Xavier, who had a day to remember as they stormed through the six matches with two victories and four top-three placements. Day two also saw IHC ESPORTS climb from sixth place to third as they racked up eliminations. Finally, local team S2G had a day to forget, as a series of early knockouts moved them down from third to eighth position.
The winner of the first PMGC 2023 match, Alpha7, entered day two with the same level of ferocity, taking first place again in the day’s opening match. This time however they were able to keep their momentum at an even higher level, following up with a second and third-place finish later in the day. After twelve matches, the team stands at 114 points, a clear 13 points from second place.
It was not just first place that saw a team change. D’Xavier was on fire throughout day two, as they moved up from eighth place to second by taking two winner winner chicken dinners, two more top three placements, and only one finish outside of the top five. The team from PMSL SEA used these six matches to make a statement. Tomorrow they are coming to win it all!
D’Xavier were not the only team to make huge surges up the leaderboard, as IHC ESPORTS ended day two in third place, after a sixth-place finish in day one. While they did not secure a victory, an aggressive strategy that saw them take 14 eliminations in the final match allowed them to make their way into the top three.
Stalwart Esports, while unable to match the strong showing of Alpha7, still put on a good display with another consistent run of finishes all within the top ten. A lack of a victory set them back to forth place, however only 8 points now separates them from second place, and with six matches to go they are still within striking distance of the PMGC crown.
Even with the support of the crowd local team S2G were unable to replicate their day one performance. Only able to get in the top ten during one of the six matches, they fell from third place down to eighth. While they still have one final day of competition, their hopes of replicating last year’s success may no longer be possible with a current total of 61 points.
4Merical Vibes, Team Weibo and FaZe Clan rounded out the top eight, taking fifth, sixth and seventh place with 90 points, 89 points and 68 points respectively.
We now approach the final day of the 2023 PUBG MOBILE Global Championship Grand Finals, with only six matches separating these teams from marking their name in the history books. Players from across the globe, representing countries thousands of miles apart, will all compete for the chance to be named PUBG MOBILE World Champion.
UNITED KINGDOM TO HOST 2024 PUBG MOBILE GLOBAL CHAMPIONSHIP
PUBG MOBILE Esports is thrilled to announce that the 2024 PUBG MOBILE Global Championship (PMGC) will be held in the UK, taking place live next December with a $3 million prize pool. The first time a major PUBG MOBILE event has been hosted in the UK, this tournament will bring local fans a unique opportunity to see the very best skill that the world has to offer. This news comes ahead of this year’s 2023 PUBG MOBILE Grand Finals in Istanbul.
James Yang, Senior Director of PUBG MOBILE Global Esports, announced the news during the opening ceremony of the 2023 PMGC Grand Finals, with the exact UK location to be revealed at a later date. This is the first time a major PUBG MOBILE event has been held in the country and the first in Western Europe since 2018.
The highlight of the PUBG MOBILE Esports calendar, the PMGC brings together dozens of teams from around the world to compete in the ultimate showcase of talent. This year’s Grand Finals are taking place this weekend in Istanbul, Türkiye, where the final sixteen teams remaining in the competition will battle it out to become PUBG MOBILE World Champion.
Joining next year’s PMGC in the top tier of PUBG MOBILE Esports events, as well as next year’s midseason tournament in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, is the PUBG MOBILE Global Open (PMGO), which will take place in Brazil throughout March and April 2024 and feature a $500,000 prize pool.
Global Esports Federation joins UNESCO Chair on Governance & Social Responsibility
The Global Esports Federation is honored by the appointment of Thanos Karagrounas, GEF’s Executive Director, Strategy & Impact, as a member of the Advisory Committee of the UNESCO Chair on Governance and Social Responsibility in Sport.
The UNESCO Chair was established in June 2023 with the long-term aim of fostering an integrated system of research, education, and training to enhance the quality of governance practices within the sport industry and advocate socially responsible program designs that prioritize sport as a core component.
As a global leader in the realm of sustainable development and social impact, Thanos Karagrounas has been appointed to play a pivotal role in the Advisory Committee, co-coordinating one of the six strategic pillars on esports.
“It is a distinct honor to be a member of this esteemed group of internationally renowned experts. The opportunity to combine our diverse experiences and perspectives will contribute to the Chair’s objectives. The inclusion of esports as one of the UNESCO Chair’s six strategic pillars, underscores the important role GEF is playing in the governance and social responsibility realm and our commitment towards making an impact on a global scale.” ~ Thanos Karagrounas, GEF Executive Director, Strategy & Impact
The GEF convenes its #worldconnected esports community, harnessing the energy to drive meaningful progress. As a member of the Advisory Committee, the GEF looks forward to contributing its expertise to accelerate its overall contribution to the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
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