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2017 PGL Krakow Major Preview – The Challengers

By Chris Mitchell in Sports
| July 13, 2017 12:00 am PDT
major-2017-krakow-pgl|cloud nine|cloud nine logo|gamers 2|immortals|mousesports|

The PGL Krakow Major is scheduled to start on July 16th. Sixteen teams will compete for the prestige and money that comes with winning a Major. In this two-part series we will focus on the prominent teams participating in the Major. The first part of the series will focus on a few Challenger teams.


cloud nine

The North American team were finalists at the recently concluded ESL One Cologne 2017. They were able to secure wins over teams such as NIP, NaVI, etc. Cloud9 has had very good mental resilience in order to come back from a deficit in almost all their recent matches to reach the semifinals at Cologne. Stewie2k and Autimatic are undoubtedly two of the best players in North America right now.

Stewie2k and Autimatic however, cannot always pull up a sinking ship. They are extremely talented, but that is offset by mediocre plays by the others. Cloud9 is a mixture of all of these players and that is what they have to work with.

cloud nine logo

The team is led by Stewie2k and it’s on a two-legged chair. It’s on the edge of being balanced, but equally runs the risk of collapsing. The two legs are Stewie2k and Valens (the coach). Valens has proved to be a blessing for the team. They lack the depth required to strategize against their opponents. This is where Valens has proved to be extremely useful as he studies, strategizes and understands each opponent. This, combined with the raw skill level of the players helps Cloud9 to have a much better result.

The joker in the pack is Shroud. Shroud is very talented, yet an inconsistent player. Unlike Stewie2k and Autimatic who perform consistently at a high level, Shroud’s good performances are directly reflected in the team’s results. ESL One Cologne was an event where Shroud has been very good. However, it is anyone’s guess if he can repeat the performance at the Major.

Cloud9 has the potential to reach the playoffs, but it is a very big IF. They will reach the playoffs if the team performs well together and if Shroud plays well.

HLTV rank: 5th

Cloud9 Roster:

  • Skadoodle
  • Autimatic
  • N0thing
  • Stewie2k
  • Shroud


gamers 2

Gamers2 are the strongest team among the Challengers. The team was put together and touted as the French Super team; however, they have been disappointing all along. Surprisingly, it’s not that the players have lost their touch, the team simply doesn’t believe in itself. Confidence and mental strength play a big part at the top level. Any professional CS GO player will tell you that confidence in oneself is the biggest difference between the World No. 1 and the next rank.

Boasting of players such as KennyS, Shox, NBK and the coaching of Smithhz, this team has all the talent required to reach the Top four at the Major. In a recent interview, Shox admitted that the problem with the team was their lack of mental strength. Self-doubt and the fear of losing again destroy confidence in a player. KennyS is a player who relies heavily on aggressive peeks and star plays.

Despite such gloom, the team should be easily able to crawl out of the groups. They are the best Challenger team at the Major. They can perform well against most of the top teams.. Indeed they boast a 5-1 record against SK Gaming, currently viewed as one of the top teams in the world.

G2 always veto Mirage, they simply do not play it. They are extremely strong on Nuke and Cobblestone. They have had amazing wins against the best in the world on these maps. The veto for Gamers2 will be predictable and other teams can use it to their advantage, as can Gamers2. They need to be able to get a map favorable to them in the group stage. Despite this, they should easily be able to make it to the playoffs. They are extremely skilled and even in the worst match-ups they should make it to the playoffs.

HLTV rank: 4th

Gamers2 Roster:

  • Shox
  • Boddy
  • NBK
  • KennyS
  • Apex



Immortals have been facing a lot of problems in the last few months. The team has been known to be extremely passionate about the game. Recently a match involving Immortals had to be paused because the players were yelling too loudly within their booths.

This emotionally charged team has highs and lows. The biggest concern for any fan should be that their lows could potentially break the team. At the same time, however, their skill ceiling is high.

Immortals have a permanent ban in Nuke. The multiple AWPers on the team mean they prefer long sight lines such as those on Overpass. Hen1 is one of the best AWP players in North America.

This team should not make it to the finals; however, they can reach the playoffs and definitely upset a team or two. The team’s results heavily depend on the chemistry within the team, which frankly has been a little off.

HLTV rank: 10th

Immortals Roster:

  • Boltz
  • Hen1
  • Lucas1
  • Steel
  • KNg



Mousesports have had several disappointments in their results over the past few months. After the departure of Niko the team was left with a void that was simply very difficult to fill. Niko has been a prodigy, however, his relationship within the team was disconnected. He was kept on the roster but not allowed to play in an official match. His talents, which we all agree are top of the class, were being wasted in Mousesports. Ropz has been a revelation for Mousesports. The 17 year old, one of the stars at FPL, has been one of the upcoming prodigies in the CS GO world. He is extremely talented and has repeatedly showcased his skills in several of their matches.

The biggest problem for Mouz is the lack of a good map pool for them. They have been playing almost all the maps over the past few months. That being said, they have no tendency to play on a minimal number of maps. Over the past few weeks, we have seen them trying to ban Nuke repeatedly as they have not played nuke over a long period of time.

Mousesports should be able to make it to the playoffs despite their shortcomings. We do hope to see them in the playoffs where they have a decent chance to make a few upsets depending on the draw in the quarterfinals.

HLTV rank: 12th

Mousesports Roster :

  • ChrisJ
  • Denis
  • Lowel
  • Oskar
  • Ropz

These are the four challenger teams who have the most chance of making it to the playoffs. We do expect Gamers2 and Cloud9 to make the playoffs. The other teams depend heavily on their opponents and their performance.

The PGL Krakow Major Preview – The Legends will be released tomorrow on this website. PGL Krakow begins July 16th at the Tauron Arena.



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