Outsiders have survived a scare in the opening round of PGL Antwerp Major’s Challengers Stage. The CIS side beat MIBR 16-14 on Dust II to move up to the 1-0 pool of the Swiss system. Brazil has two teams playing in this stage, Imperial and MIBR, and the two debuted with a loss—similar to what happened to North America.
MIBR started the best-of-one on Dust II well and, for a moment, Brazilian fans thought the game would be easy. MIBR were seen yelling multiple times at the start of the match, especially after Dzhami “Jame” Ali messed up and did not plant the bomb on time.
Outsiders, however, showed up after being 5-1 down on their T side and slowly took control of the match. It seemed that it was going to be an easy victory, but MIBR came back in the end, only to lose in the 30th round. Aleksei “Qikert” Golubev was the best player of the series, having finished with 26 kills and only 16 deaths.
The CIS powerhouse have not been playing well since the Russian invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24. They are having to attend tournaments with the neutral name Outsiders instead of Virtus Pro due to the organization’s apparent ties with the Russian government. On top of that, the team could lose star rifler Mareks “YEKINDAR” Gaļinskis after the Major is done since he is considering his options.
This hard-fought victory in the opening round, though, could propel Outsiders forward during the PGL Antwerp Major. The second round of the Challengers Stage will be played today and all matches will still be best-of-ones since there are no elimination or advancement matches to be played.