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Published: March 24, 2023

Written by: Stefan Velikov


  • Astralis had a relatively easy time in the open qualifier
  • Meanwhile, sYnck had a much tougher time, largely due to the team’s relative inexperience
  • The last two teams for the IEM Dallas closed qualifier will be decided next week

Following a successful run at the open qualifiers, Astralis and sYnck join the likes of Fnatic and Cloud9 in the next stage of the IEM Dallas European tour.

The Two Squads Continue Forward 

Astralis and sYnck are one of the few lucky teams which will be able to participate in the IEM Dallas closed stage after emerging victorious from the open qualifiers. The two teams will now have the opportunity to win berths for the main IEM event.

Both squads now join Fnatic, Cloud9, OG, and Spirit, who have already been invited to the closed qualifier, which will run from March 31 to April 4. The final two teams for the IEM Dallas closed event will be decided on March 27-28 at the second open qualifier. 

For Astralis, this is extra good news as the team has not been performing all too well the past few weeks. The Danish team had a disappointing exit 17-20th place at ESL Pro League Season 17 after NaVi sent them to the last-chance bracket at the event, where Team Liquid finished them off and eliminated them from the tournament. However, Astralis performed much better at the Dallas open qualifier, breezing through it by winning 1WIN and HEET in comfortable affairs on the way.

Meanwhile, Estonian team sYnck had a much bumpier road at the tournament, having to fight t tooth and nail from beginning to end. Four out of their five matches stretched for more than 29 rounds as they passed teams like Websterz and Copenhagen Flames before they beat 9 Pandas to the closed qualifier spot.

These difficulties could perhaps be attributed to the relative lack of experience the team has, as sYnck re-entered competitive CS:GO just a few months ago in January of this year. Because of not having much time to adjust to playing together, Kristjan “?fejtZ?” Allsaar’s men entered the closed stage as massive underdogs. They then had to fight among five teams who currently reside in the top 15.

The IEM Dallas open qualifiers were also the stage of some other unexpected performances, like that of 9 Pandas, who defeated the much more popular team Ninjas in Pyjamas. BIG also have to try again next week after losing a 30-round match to HEET. Sprout, who previously failed to qualify for IEM Melbourne and the BLAST Premier Spring Showdown, are also yet unsuccessful despite having a new in-game leader in the face of Aaron “?AZR?” Ward.

Next week will see which two teams will join the other six that have already earned a spot for the IEM Dallas European closed qualifier.

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