Intel® Extreme Masters Sydney will take place from the 30th of April to the 5th of May in the Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney, Australia. With $100,000 for first place and as an eligible event for the Intel Grand Slam Season 2, the competition will be fierce to see who can hoist the trophy and add to their prize winnings.
Duncan “Thorin” Shields breaks down what we can expect from each of the teams at IEM Sydney:
Where home nation heroes Renegades have always been a popular team in years past, they were typically only good for some upset potential and a rare chance at a deep run. For 2019's event, Renegades have evolved into a team legitimately capable of finishing the event with the trophy lifted above their heads.
The field is no joke, as a number of top teams will be in attendance. FaZe have won two smaller events this year and enter in renewed form. Team Liquid boast perhaps the most skilled line-up in CS:GO. FNATIC have renewed their form, as a recent big finals appearance showed. MiBR are still struggling but continue to battle to become a top side again.
karrigan's new mouz line-up will play out their first full offline event in the hopes of immediately striking gold. NiP are always a fun watch, with their tendency to win and lose on seemingly every map in the pool. NRG round out the invites and have shown both a strong individual level and a wide map pool of their own, willing to play everything in their recent outings.
Through the qualifiers come European underdogs like Heroic and BIG; joined by NA hopefuls eUnited. Vici, arguably China's best team right now, are hoping to again shock the world with upsets. MVP PK have transitioned their line-up but are eager to remain relevant in the region. B.O.O.T-dream[S]scape are still hunting for offline results to match their qualifier runs. Finally, representing the home region, Grayhound seek to make new waves with their new core and Chiefs still boast some veteran names.