MyBookie.ag brings you best bets for two Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Intel Extreme Masters Season XV – World Championship quarter-finals bouts featuring Natus Vincere, Gambit Esports, Astralis and Virtus.pro. The games are scheduled for Friday, February 26 at 15:00 and 18:30 CET and can be viewed on Twitch or YouTube. Let’s take a closer look at both matches so you can bet against their Counter Strike odds.
CSGO IEM Katowice Quarter Finals Betting Predictions
Gambit Esports Vs Natus Vincere – Friday, February 26 – 15:00 CET
Gambit Esports enter this match on a three-game winning streak, which saw them defeat some of the strongest European CS:GO teams, including mousesports, Heroic and G2 Esports. That is quite a remarkable feat for a team that has spent most of the 2020 season competing in lower-tier tournaments.
Gambit’s success across the last month makes it seem like they’re on a good path to be recognized as one of the best teams in their region, but I would be hard-pressed to say they’re nearly as good as their regional rivals Team Spirit, Virtus.pro and especially their next opponents Natus Vincere.
NaVi enter the IEM Katowice quarter-finals as the reigning champions and the current world no.2 team. Even though they’re one of the main favourites to go all the way and become the first CS:GO team to win the tournament back-to-back, I have to express my concern about their performance against Team Liquid (1-2) on Sunday.
Regardless of that loss, NaVi have before bested the likes of G2, Vitality, Astralis, Complexity, FaZe, FURIA, who are essentially some of the best teams in the world right now.
These teams last met way back in October 2021 during the IEM New York 2020 CIS, where NaVi secured a comfortable 2-0 sweep with 16-11 on Overpass and 16-12 on Train. Denis “electronic” Sharipov was the best player that day with 53 frags and 1.29 HLTV rating, while the team’s star player Aleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev managed only 34 frags and 0.98 HLTV rating, which suggests NaVi can overcome Gambit even if their main carry doesn’t perform.
Even though it’s hard to undervalue Gambit’s recent success, there is no denying NaVi are just a far superior team. Anything less than a 2-0 sweep will be a disappointment for the reigning IEM Katowice champions and I don’t expect anything less from them on Friday.
Prediction: Natus Vincere -1.5 Maps
Virtus.pro Vs Astralis – Friday, February 26 – 18:30 CET
After losing their opening match of the tournament against Natus Vincere (0-2), Virtus.pro bounced back and produced a perfect run through the Group B lower bracket where they beat Ninjas in Pyjamas, FURIA and even the reigning BLAST Premier: Fall 2020 champions and current no.3 squad in the world Team Vitality.
Virtus.pro boast a strong 80% win rate across the last three months, which is quite remarkable. It’s worth noting that Virtus.pro don’t play a very attractive version of CS – something akin to the old Flipsid3 Tactics – but they get the job done, which matters the most.
Astralis enter this match off a shock 0-2 loss against another CIS roster Team Spirit, which raises some red flags, however, we can’t ignore how solid the Danes have been playing before that. In the earlier stages of the tournament, Astralis bested the likes of mousesports and Evil Genuises without any real difficulties (dropping 36 rounds across four maps) which is nothing to sneeze at.
Since their loss to Natus Vincere in the BLAST Premier Global Final 2020 grand finals, Astralis have played only six matches and won only three, which makes me believe they’re not in their best form. That, however, does not take away from the individual quality this team fields.
These two teams last met in 2019, in the grand finals of StarLadder Berlin Major 2019, when the current Virtus.pro roster was still playing under AVANGAR. The match ended with a convincing 2-0 sweep for Astralis, which was hardly a surprise considering Astralis were then considered the best team in the history of competitive CS:GO.
Astralis are no longer the same powerhouse they were in 2018-2019, and have had a few moments where they have looked very weak, so it’s reasonable to expect a close affair. That said, I still have to side with Astralis’s experience, which should tip this match in their favour. A 2-1 victory for the Danes seems like something that can happen.
Prediction: Astralis to win
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