The Playoffs are just around the corner, as ESL Pro League Season 17 races through the Group Stage with the Group D matches - with the Mid Bracket Semifinals due to kick off later today.
ESL Pro League Season 17: Mid Bracket Semifinal CS:GO schedule and betting odds
Group D, the final teams to take the spotlight in the ESL Pro League Season 17 Group Stage, will be duking it out until March 19. That means we're just days away from the Playoffs, which will begin with the Round of 16 on March 21. Once in the Playoffs, the surviving teams will be competing for their share of the $850,000 prize pool.
But just four teams from Group D will be able to make it to the Playoffs, with the other four facing elimination in the final days of the Group Stage.
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And the Mid Bracket Semifinal action will begin at 15:00 GMT today (March 17) when we'll see Team Spirit going up against Team Liquid.
Team Spirit (1.95) vs Team Liquid (1.75)
Team Spirit found themselves falling to the Mid Bracket following their upset 2-1 loss to forZe in the Upper Bracket Semifinals yesterday. It was something of a mixed showing for Spirit, with forZe getting an early upper hand with a 16-8 win on Mirage. While Spirit were able to fight back with a score of 16-7 on Anubis, they were ultimately unable to hold back forZe's Cinderella run, who closed out the series with a 16-4 win on Ancient. It was certainly a setback for Spirit, coming just after their promising 2-0 victory over Astralis in the Upper Bracket Semifinals, but time will tell if they can recover in time to defeat Team Liquid later today.
Team Liquid, meanwhile, are fresh from their 2-0 victory over ATK in their Mid Bracket Round 1 match yesterday. Despite ATK putting up a solid effort in the first map, which finished with a score of 16-12 on Mirage, Liquid were nonetheless able to send them down to the Lower Bracket Quarterfinals with a score of 16-7 on Overpass. It was an expected, though badly-needed win for Liquid, who also suffered an upset loss in the Upper Bracket Quarterfinals at the hands of Rare Atom - another match they had been strongly expected to win. Their win over ATK should provide a much-needed morale boost, but will it be enough to face off against Team Spirit?
This is shaping up to be a close match, with the odds slightly favouring Team Liquid - at 1.75 vs Team Spirit's 1.95.
The second Mid Bracket Semifinal match will kick off at 18:30 GMT when we'll see Rare Atom going head-to-head with Natus Vincere (NAVI).
Rare Atom (6.30) vs Natus Vincere (1.08)
Rare Atom had an incredible start to the tournament in the Upper Bracket Quarterfinals, where they claimed a stunning upset 2-0 win over Team Liquid, despite low expectations for the team heading into the series. It was an incredible result, matching forZe's surprisingly strong performance elsewhere in Group D. Unfortunately for Atom, however, it could well have been short-lived, as the team went on to suffer a 2-0 loss to ENCE in the Upper Bracket Semifinals. It was a fairly one-sided affair too, with scores of 16-3 on Overpass and 16-12 on Nuke. They'll have another opportunity today to prove their victory over Team Liquid wasn't a fluke - but early signs aren't looking promising.
NAVI, meanwhile, had a much less impressive start to ESL Pro League Season 17. Despite high expectations for their performance, NAVI suffered a 2-1 loss to forZe in the Upper Bracket Quarterfinals, marking them as the first victim of forZe's stunning Cinderella story. Fortunately, the Ukrainian team were able to make up for that loss in their Mid Bracket Round 1 match, where they emerged victorious over Astralis with a score of 2-1. Still, it's hardly the performance many fans were hoping to see from NAVI at this month's tournament, and they'll be surely feeling the pressure to ensure they don't suffer a second upset loss so early in their Group Stage run.
The odds heavily favour NAVI here, at 1.08 vs Rare Atom's 6.30.
Which teams will you be supporting? Whatever Group D contenders you choose to back, make sure that you watch CS:GO live from the comfort of your own home via our handy upcoming match schedule. And while you're at it, remember to sign up to claim your free 100% bonus to make the most of your CS:GO esports betting.