The Underdog Project: Chiefs @ IEM Sydney 2017

Liam 'malta' Schembri and other Teammates at IEM in Sydney 2017
eSports 05/15/2017

When you’re the proclaimed underdog of a competition like the Intel Extreme Masters, there’s much to proof. Australian-based and paysafecard-sponsored team Chiefs eSports Club made it to the big stage of the first IEM of the new season in Sydney – and surprised watchers by scoring a win over “North”. Now Chiefs CS:GO Team Manager Stephanie Leung shares their experience:

“Playing at IEM Sydney was an incredible experience for our team, getting to play against the best teams in the world really opened our eyes on what we can be doing better and hopefully we get transfer those things into our own game.” - Tyler ‘tucks’ Reilly (Captain and In-Game Leader)

For many IEM Sydney attendees, the event started on Saturday, May 6, 2017, at Qudos Bank Arena, however the journey for the Counterstrike: Global Offensive team of Chiefs Esports Club started at the ESL Studios on the 3rd of May, in a partitioned block between SK Gaming and ViCi Gaming, ready to take on the world number one - Astralis. Unfortunately, the boys fell 5-16 on Inferno against the incredibly coordinated Danish team, and were set to face their Australian brethren, Renegades in the next round of the Swiss Format. Train was off to a great start for the Chiefs as we stood 15-0 at the first half, ending the map 16-5 after losing pistol round. With OpTic losing and winning their matches to North and Vici Gaming respectively, they were our next opponents on Train, however the boys could not pull off the same performance against Renegades and fell 4-16, which meant our next match was possibly our last, and we were major underdogs drawing North, ranked 6th in the world.

Record crowds in eSports for Australia

Both teams sat with 1-2 in the standings and tensions were high, as neither wanted to be the second team eliminated from the playoffs on Saturday and Sunday, which would see a record crowd for eSports in Australia. Both Australian analysts on the desk didn’t think the home team stood a chance against the Danes, but the boys pulled a 16-13 comeback from a 5-10 round on Nuke for one of the biggest upsets that (almost) no one would have ever predicted. This provided a lifeline for the team as we were also one game away from making playoffs at Qudos Bank Arena. A repeat match-up on Train against OpTic was do or die, however the boys fell 6 rounds short of a win (10-16), which saw OpTic through and unfortunately our IEM Sydney dreams ended there.

“The event itself was amazing to be a part of and how professional everything was run. All the games ran smoothly and on time with no delays. Can’t wait to go back”, said Tyler.

Only a few weeks ago, paysafecard announced further sponsorships in the field of eSports like ESL, Chiefs Esports Club or G2 Esports. As for now, paysafecard congratulates Chiefs Esports Club for their performance at IEM and wishes best of luck for future competitions!