Team Vitality stands alone atop the Group A standings at 3-0 after Friday’s action at ESL Pro League Season 16 in Malta.
Vitality defeated Fnatic 2-1 to become the last remaining unbeaten. Endpoint swept Natus Vincere 2-0 and Team Spirit topped Ninjas in Pyjamas by the same score.
The $835,000 Counter-Strike: Global Offensive event features 24 teams vying for a $175,000 first prize and a berth in the BLAST Premier World Final. Only the Season 16 champion will clinch a spot in the $1 million Final set for Dec. 14-18 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
The Pro League teams are divided into four groups for the initial round-robin phase. The four group champions will advance to the playoff quarterfinals, while the teams that come in second and third in each group will move on to the playoffs’ Round of 12.
All matches in the group stage and the playoffs are best-of-three until the best-of-five final on Oct. 2.
Vitality’s fell behind early when Fnatic opened the match with a 16-6 victory on Nuke. Vitality rallied, tying the match with a 16-12 win on Inferno and completing the comeback with a 16-11 victory on Mirage. Lotan “Spinx” Giladi of Israel led the way with 66 kills and a plus-20 kills-to-deaths differential for Vitality.
Previously winless Endpoint handed NaVi their first loss by prevailing 16-7 on Ancient and 16-10 on Dust II. Guy “Nertz” Iluz of Israel guided Endpoint with 46 kills and a plus-17 K-D.
Team Spirit bested Ninjas 16-9 on Mirage and 16-7 on Nuke. Russian Boris “magixx” Vorobiev had 46 kills on a massive plus-31 differential for Spirit.
Group A action continues Saturday with three matches:
–Ninjas in Pyjamas vs. Endpoint
–Fnatic vs. Team Spirit
–Natus Vincere vs. Team Vitality
Group A concludes on Sunday with Groups B, C, and D to follow in subsequent weeks.
ESL Pro League Season 16 group standings, with win-loss record, score differential and points:
1. Team Vitality, 3-0, +24, 9 points
2. Natus Vincere, 2-1, +12, 6 points
3. Team Spirit, 2-1, +19, 6 points
4. Fnatic, 1-2, +10, 3 points
5. Endpoint, 1-2, -15, 3 points
6. Ninjas in Pyjamas, 0-3, -50, 0 points
Group B (Sept. 7-11)
Group C (Sept. 14-18 )
Group D (Sept. 21-25)
–Field Level Media