Road to ESL One Cologne
ENCE have qualified for their first major tournament as they will head off to Cologne, Germany to compete in the ESL One event with some of the top teams in the industry. Having secured their spot through the GGBet Majestic event which took place in Moscow, Russia we take a look at their road from qualifiers to where they head next at the main event.
As one of the invited teams to the GGBet Majestic Qualifier ENCE would have to battle their way through a 4 team group stage with only 1 spot available to the playoffs. This however would not stop the team as they managed to take down LDLC, Kinguin and Tempo Storm to secure the first place spot in the group 3-0. The next stage would involve a single-elimination bracket against the invited high seeds of the qualifier and ENCE would face off against Team EnVyUs. The series would be a hard fought battle but eventually would see the Finnish team lose the series 1-2 and finish in 3rd/4th of the qualifier.
A fortunate invite
With only four teams competing in the GGBet Majestic main event ENCE found themselves a golden ticket as an invited team to the event. With Gambit and North (the previous invited teams) winning their spot to ESL One Cologne via other means it meant that there were two spots available for invite again. Due to other teams unable to make it ENCE would receive an invite and another chance at making it to Germany.
Joining the team in the four team playoffs would be ALTERNATE aTTaX, Team Spirit and qualifier favourites AVANGAR. The tournament would be a opening BO1 series with ENCE taking on CIS qualifier Team Spirit. Things didn’t quite go the way for ENCE and they would drop to the lower bracket after losing 11-16 on Cache and would now mean a long fight back.
First opponent for ENCE in the lower bracket would be a surprise opponent in the favourites AVANGAR who had recently competed in the Starladder series finals. However, this would not put the pressure on the Finnish team as the map pool would favour them and they would make relatively easy work of the series. Taking Dust2 16-5 to secure the lead they would have a closer battle on Mirage as they would lose 16-14 for the series to be tied up. However in convincing fashion once again they would finish off AVANGAR with a 16-6 victory on Inferno and advance on to the lower bracket decider where they would face ALTERNATE aTTaX.
This series would prove to be a little more of a heart racer for ENCE as the first map would be Nuke and saw them go down 4-11 on the first half playing. However, they would take a dominant half of their own as they would win 12-3 and secure the first map 16-14 and take the series lead. Dust 2 would be the map to settle it as ENCE took a 16-9 after securing a solid T side and then shutting down aTTax on the CT side for the final rounds needed.
ENCE would be out for revenge as they would face Team Spirit, the opponent that sent them to the lower bracket and things would look good with the map pick. Mirage would be the first map, somewhere the team have had plenty of comfortable successes on and this time it would be no different as they would take a devastating victory 16-3 over Spirit. Although the damage had been started the second map was going to be Cache, the same map Spirit won over the Finns earlier in the tournament.
It looked like it was going to do the same way as Spirit took the first half lead 11-4 and although ENCE amounted a comeback they stumbled. With the game tying up 12-12 and ENCE looking to be completely in the drivers seat Spirit would come up with some important rounds to go 15-12. It would take composure, patience and some crazy clutch plays for the Finns to bring it back to 15-15.
With Overtime confirmed it would be a back and forth fight between the two teams eventually leading to Double Overtime. This however was were ENCE took control and the victory over Spirit with a 22-18 victory and securing themselves a spot at the ESL One Cologne event. We are super excited to see the team performing in Germany and we hope that you will support them as they attempt to leave their mark on the global scene this July.