South African CS:GO is reaching a crucial tipping point

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Up until Sunday, when Energy finally defeated Bravado Gaming at ESWC, every single news report could have been copied and pasted from the last. Bravado and Energy met in almost every single recent grand final, but not much was said about the teams who were in the real battle right below them. While Energy and Bravado are, for now, the top teams in the country, other teams are starting to rise up and give them a run for their money each tournament. The perpetual shuffle every few months has started to slim down, and South African CS:GO is approaching a new age of competition which will soon see a real battle for the top spot.

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Bravado Gaming at this weekend’s ESWC Qualifier

This past weekend teams such as Ventus Gaming, Veneration Esports, Goliath Gaming, and Damage Control proved that they’re not too far behind. Veneration Esports managed to take Energy Esports to 30 rounds, narrowly losing the map 16-14. Goliath Gaming also brought it to Bravado in their semi-final with a close call at times versus the then favourites to win. With Energy defeating them, with a plagued Sonic, other teams who often go forgotten deserve mention as the competition in South Africa is growing.

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Goliath Gaming, who had a featured article in Fast Company South Africa

The now postponed second qualifier for ESWC, which was meant to take place this weekend, was going to be the best CS:GO South Africa had to offer as teams who did not feature at the Johannesburg leg would meet this weekend. These teams included White Rabbit Gaming, Aperture Gaming, Flipsid3 Tactics and Big 5. Naturally, both Goliath Gaming and Bravado Gaming would make the trip for a second shot joined by Ventus Gaming and Veneration Esports. Both White Rabbit Gaming and Aperture proved their worth at the recent VS Gaming Masters offering up some extremely tight matches. This led me to believe that South African CS:GO is reaching a stage where competition is going to become extremely tight.

Big 5 has in it some of South Africa’s top CS:GO players, and they’ve yet to have a proper LAN appearance as a team. The same would apply for the new Flipsid3 Tactics team who suffered after the most recent roster changes which gave us a few members of Goliath Gaming. The biggest issue with CS:GO in South Africa is the constant shuffles which happen every few months, but noting recent performances, it looks like the battle below Energy and Bravado is growing extremely close. It’s worth noting that some of these teams have shown extreme progress against both the top two teams, and if we retain these rosters we could be looking at an extremely close competition for the remainder of 2017 and the start to 2018.

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I cannot wait for the day where I report on an entire competition of tight matches instead of a final between the same two teams every single tournament. ESWC did offer up some tight matches, but the future that stands before us is a bright one for South African CS:GO.

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Last Updated: July 26, 2017

Kyle Wolmarans

Critical Hit’s esports guy. I talk about esports and drink whiskey. I also write and cast for elsewhere – but my work here is independent of that.

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