BLAST Premier: Fall Groups 2023 continues with the final Round 1 match of the Play-In stage between G2 Esports and Evil Geniuses and the first fixture of the second round between Astralis and Team Liquid.
As seven teams remain in the race for three tickets leading to BLAST Premier: Fall FInals 2023, things are heating up, and with teams still shaking off the rust they accumulated over the summer break, a few more upsets are likely on the cards.
G2 Esports vs Evil Geniuses Betting Preview
When: Saturday, July 22, 15:00 CEST
G2 Esports and Evil Geniuses will clash in the first round of BLAST Premier: Fall Groups 2023 Play-In stage, which according to the latest esports betting odds, should be a very straightforward game for G2 Esports. Priced as 1.04 favourites, G2 Esports are expected to crush EG and take one step closer to claiming the BLAST Premier: Fall Finals 2023 ticket and barring any surprises, this is exactly what should happen.
G2 Esports had a slow start to the BLAST Premier: Fall Groups 2023, losing to Team Liquid (1-2) in the opening game of Group C. G2 had their chances to walk away victorious, but the team was clearly out of sync, which was expected following the long summer break.
Despite the crushing loss, G2 Esports bounced back with a 2-0 sweep of the new-look OG, but again proven too weak to dance with the top dogs, and got blasted by FaZe Clan in Group C lower bracket finals with 7-16 on Nuke and 11-16 on Mirage.
G2 Esports had its ups and downs – losing against stronger opponents but taking care of business against weaker teams. And to succeed on Saturday, they just have to do the latter again.
Evil Geniuses were a laughing stock before the summer break, and even with the recent roster changes – which were essentially EG promoting its academy roster – things have not changed. EG are a very weak team and arguably the weakest team remaining in the BLAST Premier: Fall Groups 2023.
In the group stage, they’ve not won a single game, although they did come close to winning one map against Ninjas in Pyjamas (20-22 on Inferno). I wouldn’t overreact to that map, as it doesn’t prove that EG are good, but it does show what we already know – the first tournaments after the summer break are notoriously unpredictable; most teams make roster changes, and the majority take a whole month off and enter the tournament rusty.
G2 Esports are objectively much better than Evil Geniuses, but at the offered esports betting odds, there is no point in betting on the favourites. In fact, the odds are so one-sided that there is some value in backing Evil Geniuses to win a map.
It’s not something we can expect Evil Geniuses to accomplish constantly, but given how shaky G2 Esports have looked in the BLAST Premier: Fall Groups 2023 group stage, seeing them drop one wouldn’t be the craziest thing to have happened.
- Prediction: Evil Geniuses +1.5 maps – 3.25 at bet365
Astralis vs Team Liquid Betting Preview
When: Saturday, July 22, 18:30 CEST
Astralis couldn’t find any traction in Group B, where they first lost against the new-look Natus Vincere (1-2) and then got knocked out of the group by BIG (1-2). In both games, Astralis got reverse-swept.
Astralis haven’t shown much, but they had their moments throughout BLAST Premier: Fall Groups 2023, so it’s not like they’re on the same level as Complexity or Evil Geniuses, which are a lost cause. Astralis, while they still have a lot of work to do, can be competitive on a good day, and as soon as they figure out how to play with a new in-game leader, they should do just fine.
This team would be very good if the whole roster stepped up. As of now, the new IGL, Benjamin “blameF” Bremer, is the best-performing player on the team and the second-highest rated player of the tournament (1.37), ahead of Nicolai “dev1ce” Reedtz, who ranks sixth with a 1.19 performance rating.
The only thing Astralis need is for the newest signing, Victor “Staehr” Staehr, to start carrying his weight, and once that happens, Astralis should be competitive.
Team Liquid enjoyed a good start to BLAST Premier: Fall Groups 2023. They defeated G2 Esports (2-1) in the opening round of Group C, then upset FaZe Clan (2-1), but lost the finals, where FaZe got their revenge with a dominant 16-11, 16-7 victory.
As noted before, most of the team’s results in this tournament should be taken with a grain of salt, as the majority of teams are rusty. But credit is where credit is due – Team Liquid didn’t look too bad.
Team Liquid enter this match as favourites, which makes considering they won against G2 and FaZe, while Astralis haven’t won a game yet. But there really isn’t much to set them apart.
Astralis have a lot more things to iron out, but if Staehr can at least post a positive rating on Saturday, Astralis should have a solid 50% chance of winning. So at 2.37, the choice is clear.
- Prediction: Astralis to win – 2.37 at bet365