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WCS Montreal StarCraft II Preview

5 September 2017 13:57

WCS Montreal is the fourth and last event of the 2017 WCS Circuit, taking place at DreamHack 2017 from Friday 8th to Sunday 10th September. There will be major CS:GO and Hearthstone events in Canada, as well as a huge StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void tournament involving up to 80 competitors. With a $100,000 prize pool and 11,000 WCS Circuit Points shared amongst StarCraft II participants, the winner will also be seeded into the WCS Global Finals – a huge incentive for all involved.

WCS Montreal StarCraft II Format

StarCraft II proceedings begin with three single-elimination, best-of-three group stages, and the first stage sees 64 players from an open sign-up process split into 16 groups of four. The top two players will advance from each group.

In the second stage, the 32 players to make it through the first group will be split into eight groups of four where, once more, the top two players from each group will progress to the third and final group stage.

The 16 gamers to progress from the opening two stages will then be joined by 16 players from the 2017 WCS Montreal qualifiers for the third and final stage, all of whom have earned direct qualification through the WCS Challenger, winning free travel, accommodation and entrance for the event. They’re spread over six different regions – Europe, North America, Latin America, Taiwan/Hong Kong/Macau/Japan, China and Oceania/South-East Asia – and those 32 players combined will be split into eight groups of four. The top two players from each group will then advance to the play-offs.

The 16 players to reach the play-offs will compete in a single-elimination best-of-five format, leading onto a best-of-seven grand final for the two gamers to make it all the way.

The Prize Pool

The prize pool is shown below, along with the breakdown of the 11,000 WCS Circuit Points, based on where players finish:

  • 1st place - $25,000, 3,000 WCS Circuit points, and seeded for the WCS Global Finals
  • 2nd place – $10,000 and 1,400 WCS Circuit points
  • 3rd to 4th place - $6,500 and 900 WCS Circuit points
  • 5th to 8th place - $4,000 and 600 WCS Circuit points
  • 9th to 16th place - $2,500 and 300 WCS Circuit points
  • 17th to 24th place - $1,000
  • 25th to 32nd place - $1,000

Who Are The Favourites?

Of the competitors, the top ten favourites to win the StarCraft II tournament outright are listed below, courtesy of Bet365:

  • Neeb – 9/5
  • ShowTimE – 27/10
  • Serral – 15/4
  • Nerchio – 8/1
  • Kelazhur - 14/1
  • MaSa - 14/1
  • TRUE - 15/1
  • Scarlett – 20/1
  • Namshar – 21/1
  • Cham – 40/1

Any player from Europe is 10/11 to take home the title, whilst a win by North American gamer worth 6/5. You can also get odds of 6/1 for a player from anywhere in the rest of the world to triumph.

Priced at 9/5, 19-year-old Alex “Neeb” Sunderhaft is favourite with some bookmakers, including Bet365, to prevail in Montreal. Currently ranked first on the WCS Circuit with 5900 points, the teenager will relish challenging the rest of the field. The American-born gamer has a current 67.70% win ratio over the course of 1,102 recorded matches, and claimed first place in the 2017 WCS Jönköping and 2017 WCS Austin events earlier this year, as well as securing a third place finish at the World Electronic Sports Games 2016 back in January.

Elsewhere, 23-year-old Tobias "ShoWTimE" Sieber is second favourite with Bet365 at 27/10. Like “Neeb”, the German has had a relatively successful year thus far and will be looking to produce the form his fans knows he is capable of to secure a first place finish in Canada. ShoWTimE’s results this year include wins in the 2017 WCS Montreal and Austin qualifiers, and he also came out on top in the Gamers Assembly 2017, Intercontinental Clash and Intercontinental Clash 2.

However, it may not be the gamers people expect that make it through to the latter stages. The stage is set for an unexpected challenger to go all the way to the knock-out stages. For punters looking to place a bet, it could be worth looking at the likes of Scarlett at 20/1 or Cham at 40/1. All the pressure will be on Neeb and ShoWTimE, as they’re expected to be there or thereabouts come the business end of the tournament and, given the unpredictable nature of StarCraft II, a less well-known gamer could easily go all the way to claim the biggest share of the prize pool and WCS Circuit Points.

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Updated on: 2018-11-27

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