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January 9th, 2020

x-kom AGO, MAD Lions to participate in IEM Katowice 2020 qualifier

x-kom AGO and MAD Lions have rounded off the team list for the closed EU qualifier for IEM Katowice 2020. They came out on top in the second portion of open qualification, which ran on January 7-8.

In the match for a spot, AGO took down the Russian squad of Hard Legion, finishing the game 2-0 in their favour: 16-5 Inferno, 16-10 Dust2. MAD Lions, on the other hand, won over their compatriots from North. The lineup led by Nicolai "HUNDEN" Petersen lost to them only 12 rounds in total: 16-8 Overpass, 16-4 Mirage.

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Matches of the decisive phase of the European qualifier are scheduled for January 9-10. Beside AGO and MAD Lions, it will feature six more teams, with three of them being direct invitees: FaZe Clan, G2 Esports, and ENCE Esports. Other three spots were handed out in the first open qualifier and a local Polish league, organized by ESL. They were claimed by Heroic, ARCY, and Illuminar Gaming.

The teams that are named above are set to fight for three slots at IEM Katowice 2020. They will compete in the bracket of Double Elimination, where every match will be held in the Best of 3 format. First two tickets to the Polish championship will be given to the upper-bracket winners, and the last one will be sent to the strongest participant of the lower bracket.

Aside from Europe, ESL is hosting qualifiers in three different regions: North America, Asia, and Oceania. For each division, one spot to the main event was allocated. All qualifier cycle will be finished on January 16.

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IEM Katowice 2020 will be running from February 25 to March 1. It will see 16 teams facing off against each other for a prize fund of $500,000; 10 of them received direct invites. Three lineups — FNATIC, Astralis, mousesports — earned their invitations due to winning separate events of the ESL Pro Tour circuit. The rest of the participants were invited directly: among them are NAVI and Virtus.pro.