ESL will wrap up their Counter Strike: Global Offensive Pro league in less than two months, with the season three grand finals to be held at London’s O2 arena.
ESL Pro Gaming Vice President, Ulrich Schulze had declared that 2016 was “by far the most prestigious year of ESL Pro League to date,” and that the company was “taking it to the next level” with this year’s live finals.
There will be group stages for the tournament, which will take place at the ESL studios in Leicester, England, on May 11 to 12. The grand finals from May 14 to 15 will see a victor take out the trophy and $200,000 of the $750,000 price pool up for grabs in front of a live audience.
The participating teams were, in a sense the usual suspects. Of all of them, it was Fnatic, the team that took both Pro League season trophies so far, looks as dominating ever.
The Swedish team defeated surprise finalists Cloud9 in Cologne in July, 2015. They would go on to defeat Natus Vincere in the season two finals in Burbank, California just four months ago.
However, on pole position of the league standings it was fellow Swedes Ninjas in Pyjamas that currently holds the top spot. Both Fnatic and Astralis sit three points (one win) behind, while the fourth and final spot from Europe is currently held by G2 Esports.
Virtus.Pro, supposedly one of the best teams in the world, are shockingly in last place, and need to focus on escaping relegation before considering a playoff spot.
In the Americas, Brazil-based Luminosity Gaming, the crowd favourites sit atop of their regional standings untroubled. Cloud9 is placed second, being level on points with Selfless who had managed to surprise everyone with their performance this season so far.
Meanwhile, Australian team Renegades sits at fourth, but with about a month left of competition those standings are certainly not locked in. Regional powerhouses Counter Logic Gaming and Team Liquid are yet to find form in the league and sit outside the playoff spots.