Astralis won one match and lost another on Monday as the BLAST Premier Spring Showdown European event got underway.
Ninjas in Pyjamas, MAD Lions and mousesports also earned victories, and ENCE and Team Vitality played to a draw.
The BLAST Premier Spring Showdown, a 10-team $325,000 Counter-Strike: Global Offensive event, originally was scheduled for June 2-7 at a site to be announced, but plans were altered due to the coronavirus pandemic. The tournament was split into two online competitions: a 10-team, $182,500 European division and an eight-team, $142,500 Americas division.
The Spring Showdown European event is divided into two five-team groups for round-robin play through Thursday. Each group game will consist of a single map, with three points awarded for a win and one for a tie.
The winner of each group will get a double bye directly to one of the two playoff finals on Sunday, while the second-place teams will head to one of the two semifinals on Saturday. The third- and fourth-place teams will compete in the playoff quarterfinals on Friday, and the fifth-place teams will be eliminated.
The winners of the two playoff finals will each earn $37,500 and a berth in the eight-team BLAST Premier Spring European finals. The two Sunday losers will meet June 15, with the winner also earning a spot in the eight-team, $500,000 online BLAST Premier Spring European Finals, scheduled for June 15-21.
Five teams already earned spots in the Spring European Finals based on their results in the Jan. 31-Feb. 16 regular season: FaZe Clan, Natus Vincere, G2 Esports, Complexity Gaming and OG.
The top two teams at the Spring European Finals will earn berths in the eight-team, $1.5 million BLAST Premier Global Final, set for Jan. 18-24, 2021, at a site to be determined. The Global Final will also include the winners of the American Spring Finals, the Fall Finals and the ESL One Rio Major as well as the top three teams from the BLAST Premier Circuit.
Action began Monday in Group A with a 15-15 tie between Vitality and ENCE on Dust II. The star of the match was Vitality's Kevin "misutaaa" Rabiera, a 17-year-old from France who had 30 kills and a plus-13 kill-death differential. Finland's Miikka "sunny" Kemppi led ENCE with 24 kills and a plus-3 kill-death differential.
Ninjas in Pyjamas handled Astralis 16-7 on Train, with the winners getting 19 kills apiece from three members of their all-Swedish team: Fredrik "REZ" Sterner, Simon "twist" Eliasson and Hampus "hampus" Poser. Astralis' Peter "dupreeh" Rasmussen of Denmark logged 19 kills.
Astralis bounced back to defeat sAw 16-4 on Train as dupreeh had 25 kills and a plus-13 kill-death differential. Portugal's Tiago "JUST" Moura notched 14 kills for sAw.
In Group B, mousesports defeated Dignitas 16-10 on Train behind 25 kills and a plus-11 kill-death differential from Estonia's Robin "ropz" Kool. Sweden's Patrik 'f0rest' Lindberg led Dignitas with 24 kills.
MAD Lions toppled Fnatic 16-10 on Mirage, with Denmark's Lucas "Bubzkji" Andersen posting the day's best kill total (34) and kill-death differential (plus-21). Sweden's Maikil "Golden" Selim had a team-high 17 kills for Fnatic.
The only team that was idle Monday was Virtus.pro, who will play twice Tuesday.
Five matches are scheduled for Tuesday:
--Ninjas in Pyjamas vs. sAw
--Team Vitality vs. Ninjas in Pyjamas
--Fnatic vs. Virtus.pro
--MAD Lions vs. Virtus.pro
--MAD Lions vs. Dignitas
BLAST Premier Spring Showdown -- Europe standings with win-loss-tie record and point differential
1. Ninjas in Pyjamas, 1-0-0, plus-9
2. Astralis, 1-1-0, plus-3
T3. ENCE, 0-0-1, even
T3. Team Vitality, 0-0-1, even
5. sAw, 0-1-0, minus-12
T1. MAD Lions, 1-0-0, plus-6
T1. mousesports, 1-0-0, plus-6
3. Virtus.pro, 0-0-0, even
T4. Dignitas, 0-1-0, minus-6
T4. Fnatic, 0-1-0, minus-6
--Field Level Media