Vitality vs. Sprout - Who Will Pass to the Group Stage?
Can Sprout beat Vitality?
IEM Cologne Play-In's second day will start today. Four more teams will advance to the tournament group stage and complete the list of participants in this stage. In one of those matches, Vitality will face Sprout. Who will go further?
Map veto in this match is disadvantageous for Sprout. The most likely outcome will be Vertigo-Dust2-Inferno. The order may change depending on the order of the peaks. Of course, Sprout can ban Mirage instead of Nuke, but the team will likely lose Vitality's pick. The main problem with the Sprout map pool is two permabans, which make the final stage of the map veto permanently disadvantageous for the team. In the case of the most likely veto option, Sprout will have a chance to win on Vertigo, but the other two Vitality cards will be taken for themselves. The second map veto option is Nuke-Vertigo-Dust2.
If the veto map shows the real advantage of Vitality, then with the game form, everything is the opposite. Vitality again shows a volatile game. Even ZywOo, who consistently demonstrated a high level of play, fell out in the match against Movistar Riders. Even against TYLOO, the team almost made a comeback in the second half of the map. Something strange is happening with Vitality, and Sprout can take advantage of it.
At the same time, Sprout is playing consistently, and their form does not change. They remain a tier-2 solid team. Sprout loses games with tier-1 teams and shows good results against tier-2 teams. Consistency can help the matchup against Vitality, who, judging by the game, are still looking for their style.
A map veto advantage may not save Vitality from form problems. Sprout looks better in this match, but we know how Vitality gets out of difficult situations, so it's hard to believe that the French-Danish team will not make it to the IEM Cologne group stage. You can view the pre-match statistics in detail here.