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Published: February 12, 2024

Written by: Stefan Velikov

  • The Russian squad also entered the Intel Grand Slam Season 5 race with their victory
  • Danil “donk” Kryshkovets was named MVP of the event
  • He also scored the highest rating in IEM Katowice’s history

Spirit dominated FaZe with a 3-0 match to win the IEM Katowice and also enter the race for the $1 million Intel Grand Slam prize.

Spirit Won IEM Katowice

IEM Katowice 2024 ended yesterday evening with Team Spirit emerging victorious. The Russian organization enters the race for the Intel Grand Slam Season 5 prize, etching its name alongside the five other teams that have been nominated since the season began at IEM Rio 2023 in April.

Created in 2017 to celebrate the best performers in the Counter-Strike scene, the Intel Grand Slam rewards teams that win four tournaments inside a window of ten eligible events. IEM Katowice was only the second tournament of the current Grand Slam season to be played in CS2 after IEM Sydney, which FaZe won back in October of 2023, also entering the competition.

Speaking of FaZe, they were the final opponent that Spirit had to face to win the event. Considering the reputation and previous victories of the Finn “⁠karrigan⁠” Andersen-led squad, Team Spirit’s young core was up for a big challenge. Despite that, they surprised everyone by not only holding their own but also obliterating FaZe in a 3-0 match.

A huge reason for Spirit’s victory is the performance of Danil “donk” Kryshkovets. The 17-year-old prodigy was aptly named MVP of the tournament as he scored a more than impressive 1.70 rating, placing him as the highest-rated player in Katowice’s history.

Here’s How the Match Went

Despite FaZe eventually losing the game, they started decently well. They chose Nuke as the first map, which saw Robin “ropz” Kool make a crucial clutch, promising a close game between the two teams., However, donk was on the other side and he eventually dictated the pace of the game, scoring a rating of 2.06 with a 31/14 KD. This allowed Spirit to take the map with a comfortable 13-9 lead.

It was now their time to choose a map and they picked Mirage, which was marked by a closer performance by the two teams. By the end of it, both teams were neck in neck and it looked like things might go to overtime. However, at a crucial moment and with a clear advantage in weaponry and grenades, FaZe Clan dropped their guard and let Spirit close the map at 13-11.

It seems this had drained all of FaZe’s energy as the squad was unable to offer any resistance on the third and final map of Overpass. Spirit quickly took control of it and ran away with the lead, practically playing by themselves as the Russian squad ended the fort half with an 11-1 score. FaZe showed signs of life in the pistol round once the sides switched, but this was too little too late to do anything about their opponents’ massive lead. It was not long before Spirit closed out the map 13-3, winning the match with a dominant 3-0.

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