IEM Katowice: Last Years Finalists Eliminated, No. 3 SK and No. 11 fnatic Out

by Steven Cropley

The finalists from last year's Intel Extreme Masters Katowice event have been eliminated. No. 3 in the WWG CSGO Team Rankings, SK Gaming has joined No. 11 Fnatic in its elimination from the event.

(Photo: fnatic)

Fnatic took its exit with a 2-3 record in Group A while the Brazilians still have a game to go but currently sit at 1-3 with no hope of moving forward.

Fnatic's new lineup only managed wins over the other two teams in its group that were also sent home early, defeating No. 6 and 7 OpTic Gaming and Ninjas in Pyjamas. On the plus side, Fnatic lost to No. 1 Astralis in a 19-17 overtime and played No. 13 to a narrow 14-16 loss alongside a 16-11 defeat at the hands of No. 8 FaZe Clan. Never being easily taken down, Fnatic still went 2-3 and fail to make the playoffs.

In the unarguably much harder group, Group B saw SK Gaming get upset by No. 9 Cloud9 16-9 on Nuke to open up its tournament. As with Inferno, many teams are still learning Nuke and upsets are much more likely on Nuke and Inferno than other maps in the pool. The Brazilian side would match up against No. 4 Natus Vincere in its next match, this time falling 16-12 on Overpass. SK would manage to handle No. 21 Heroic with ease, taking Mirage 16-5. This would pair them against No. 2 which also had a rough start, allowing to teams to meet with 1-2 records. In the end, the Polish side would take Inferno 16-14 and put SK in a position that would lead to it failing to reach the playoffs, dependent on No. 5 North losing to Cloud9, which would not happen.

IEM Katowice will be guaranteed two new finalists in 2017 but who?