Team Nigma and VP.Prodigy each won again on Thursday to move to 4-0 in the ESL One Birmingham Online's Europe and Commonwealth of Independent States division.
Nigma swept Team Unique (1-3) in Group A action, and VP.Prodigy outlasted FlyToMoon (2-2) by a 2-1 margin in Group B. They were left as the only unbeaten teams after Vikin.gg (3-1) were swept by Team Secret (3-1) in a battle of Group A contenders.
In other action Thursday, Natus Vincere (2-2) battled past Family Team (1-3) in Group A, HellRaisers (2-2) rallied past OG (1-2), and Cyber Legacy (3-2) survived Ninjas in Pyjamas (2-2) in Group B, with all three matches decided by a 2-1 margin. Family Team is a newly renamed squad formerly known as Aggressive Mode.
ESL One Birmingham, a $300,000 Dota 2 major, had been scheduled for this week in Birmingham, England, before plans were changed due to the coronavirus pandemic. The tournament was separated into four online regional competitions: Europe/Commonwealth of Independent States, North America/South America, China and Southeast Asia.
The $40,000, six-team Southeast Asia event began last week and runs through Sunday. The other three divisions -- Europe/CIS (16 teams, $200,000), the Americas (six teams, $40,000) and China (eight teams, $55,000) -- will conclude June 7.
The Europe/CIS event features two eight-team groups for round-robin play in best-of-three matches. The top two teams in each group advance to the upper bracket of the double-elimination playoffs, and the third- and fourth-place teams earn spots in the lower bracket. The bottom four teams in each group are eliminated.
The playoffs are set to start Tuesday. All playoff matches will be best-of-three until the best-of-five final.
Nigma dispatched Unique in a total of 65 minutes, comfortably the quickest match of the day.
VP.Prodigy required more work. After they took the first game in 41 minutes, FlyToMoon responded with a 53-minute victory. VP.Prodigy recovered to win the final game in 30 minutes and clinch the match.
Secret took down Viking in a total of 78 minutes, while Na'Vi sandwiched wins of 26 and 40 minutes around a 36-minute loss to Family.
OG and HellRaisers split a pair of 34-minute games -- the first going to OG -- before HellRaisers captured a back-and-forth, 49-minute game in the decider.
Cyber Legacy took the first game from NiP in 42 minutes, dropped a 36-minute game and then won a 35-minute game to close out the victory.
All 16 teams will be in action Friday, with eight matches:
--Natus Vincere vs. Gambit Esports
--Team Liquid vs. Team Unique
--Team Nigma vs. Vikin.gg
--Team Secret vs. Family Team
--Ninjas in Pyjamas vs. HellRaisers
--OG vs. Cyber Legacy
--VP.Prodigy vs. Winstrike
--Alliance vs. FlyToMoon
ESL One Birmingham 2020 - Online: Europe and CIS standings (map W-L in parentheses)
1. Team Nigma, 4-0 (8-2)
T2. Team Secret, 3-1 (6-2)
T2. Vikin.gg, 3-1 (6-2)
T4. Team Liquid, 2-2 (4-4)
T4. Natus Vincere, 2-2 (4-5)
T6. Family Team (formerly Aggressive Mode), 1-3 (4-6)
T6. Team Unique, 1-3 (2-6)
8. Gambit Esports, 0-4 (1-8)
1. VP.Prodigy, 4-0 (8-2)
T2. Cyber Legacy, 3-2 (8-7)
T2. HellRaisers, 3-2 (6-6)
T4. Alliance, 2-2 (6-4)
T4. Ninjas in Pyjamas, 2-2 (6-5)
T4. FlyToMoon, 2-2 (5-6)
7. OG, 1-3 (4-7)
8. Winstrike Team, 0-4 (2-8)
--Field Level Media