Trio of teams improve to 2-0 at Road to Rio - Europe

A trio of teams improved to 2-0 while a fourth avoided falling to 0-2 as group play continued ESL One: Road to Rio -- Europe on Sunday.

Team Heretics had very little trouble in sweeping ENCE in the only Group A match of the day, while FaZe Clan and Movistar Riders had to put in a little more work to get their second victories and move into a tie atop the Group B standings.

ESL One: Rio Major, a $2 million Counter-Strike: Global Offensive event, was originally scheduled to be held May 11-24 in Rio de Janeiro, but it was pushed back to Nov. 9-22 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The regional qualifying events for Europe, North America and South America started Wednesday. Play in the Commonwealth of Independent States region will begin this coming Thursday, with the Asia and Oceania regions kicking off May 6.

The teams are competing for a total of $255,000 in the online tournaments, as well as for Regional Major Ranking points to be applied toward berths at the ESL One: Rio Major.

The European event has 16 teams divided into two groups for round-robin play consisting of best-of-three matches. The top two finishers from each group advance to the upper bracket of a double-elimination playoff, with the third- and fourth-place finishers advancing to the playoff's lower bracket.

All playoff matches are best-of-three prior to the grand final. The title match will be best-of-five, with the team emerging from the upper bracket starting with a one-map advantage.

The European champion will receive 500 Pro Tour points and 1,600 Regional Major Rankings points, plus an as-yet-unannounced share of the $115,000 prize pool. The runner-up will get 350 Pro Tour points and 1,500 RMR points.

On Sunday, Heretics topped ENCE 16-5 on Nuke and 16-6 on Inferno, shutting ENCE out in the second half on both maps. The win moved Heretics into a tie for first in Group A with Ninjas in Pyjamas. Heretics and NiP aren't scheduled to play one another until May 5.

In Group B, North opened play with the easiest win of the group, topping mousesports 16-14 on Vertigo and 16-12 on Mirage in a matchup of teams that entered the day tied at 0-1. FaZe and G2 Esports then played the map of the day, with FaZe taking Mirage in OT, winning 22-20. The second map was another close affair but FaZe came out on top again, winning 19-15 on Dust 2.

Riders ended the day with a 2-1 win over c0ntact Gaming. After winning on Nuke 16-13 to open the match, Riders lost 16-5 on Mirage. But Riders won the deciding map, taking Train 16-11.

After an off day Monday, both groups return to action with a busy Tuesday that will see six matches played, including Riders vs. FaZe Clan.

Tuesday schedule

Group A

Ninjas in Pyjamas vs. ENCE

Dignitas vs. Fnatic

Team Heretics vs. Complexity Gaming

Astralis vs. Team Vitality

Group B

Copenhagen Flames vs. GODSENT

Movistar Riders vs. FaZe Clan

ESL One: Road to Rio -- Europe standings, with win-loss record and map differential (through Sunday):

Group A

T1. Ninjas in Pyjamas, 2-0, +33

T1. Team Heretics, 2-0, +25

T3. Astralis, 1-1, +6

T3. Team Vitality, 1-1, +4

T3. Fnatic, 1-1, +3

T3. ENCE, 1-1, -16

T7. Dignitas, 0-2, -23

T7. Complexity Gaming, 0-2, -32

Group B

T1. FaZe Clan, 2-0, +13

T1. Movistar Riders, 2-0, +3

3. Copenhagen Flames, 1-0, +11

T4. G2 Esports, 1-1, +8

T4. North, 1-1, -1

6. GODSENT, 0-1, -14

T7. c0ntact Gaming, 0-2, -8

T7. mousesports, 0-2, -12

--Field Level Media