From 9 to 12 of June CS:GO pro scene at ESL One Cologne 2016 qualifier first experienced "Swiss-system". As the group stage of the next Major tournament will be held exactly in such a format, let's recall the first successful experience of our team performing under such a system.
Before the qualifier started most of analysts didn't expect Gambit to advance to Major once more. Adding Ivan "spaze" Obrezhan to the team and failures in online qualifiers led to our team not being treated as the candidate for advancing to the next stage. Dmitry "hooch" Bogdanov has mentioned later, "after struggling so hard and people saying that we aren't as good after wayLander departed, we struggled hard online and nobody believed in us, people were talking a lot of shit to us". Despite this, Gambit CS:GO proved that we always have to believe in ourselves.
Mikhail "Dosia" Stolyarov:
"We gathered for boot camp seven days before the tournament and decided to change our play style, to play more freely while not forgetting about rounds. We also concentrated on improving our aim, as it was difficult to do so with our high ping that we have at home".
The match against OpTic Gaming opened the first tour. The beginning wasn't successful for our team, defense on Cobblestone was lost with the score 4:11. However, confident performance on T side let us snatch the first victory (16:14), and the new player spaze turned out to be the best player of the match.
Ivan "spaze" Obrezhan:
"As for me, it's a good system, you have 3 chances to get to the Major. However, it didn't really influence our preparations, as we just wanted to show our best".
Then we met with old fellows – EnVyUs. It was Cobblestone again, this time both defense and offense were strong and the victory with the score 16:10 was ours. And especially Rustem "mou" Telepov showed himself, making the biggest number of frags per the second round (32 kills).
Having won two matches, our team got three attempts left to advance to Major. That's why a misfire in the next game against FaZe Clan wasn't deadly.
Dmitry "hooch" Bogdanov:
"We played really good as T, and as CT we started well, but we lost two rounds versus fox where he made a 1v3 and a 2v5 where he got an ace, so he played that match really well, but we made huge mistakes in these rounds. When you lose these rounds like that, your morale goes down and the other team gets super-hyped. After we lost I said to my team that we just need to let it go, because shit happens. It's really important to adapt to things like that. So I said we should just forget about that game and don't make the same mistakes we made before, and we didn't make them today".
Although the new opponent G2 made us nervous. The French back then occupied the fifth place in the world ranking and of course they expected to provide themselves with the place in the main CS:GO tournament yet fighting with us. However, the match on Train put everything in its place. Confident victory with the score 16:10 and we again come to Major. The other remarkable thing was that on the basis of qualifiers all the Gambit's opponents advanced to ESL One Cologne as well, and it means that we got our place fighting with the strongest teams.
Ivan "spaze" Obrezhan:
"Nobody believed in us that we will qualify, because we lost to almost everyone online. But we proved them that we can show some real CS. I felt great after the last game, I mean, we won a spot at the biggest tournament, everyone was very happy about it".