IEM Katowice 2019: Eight CS:GO Women’s Teams Fight For Intel Challenge Title

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CS:GO ESL Counter-Strike

IEM Katowice 2019 serves as a battleground for eight of the best women’s CS:GO teams around the world to fight it out for the Intel Challenge title. At stake is the title of Champion and a split of the $50,000 prize pool. The tournament is scheduled to begin on February 28 with the championships slated for March 2.

The first part of the tournament is the Group Stage which will follow a double-elimination format. Matches will be best-of one but decider and elimination matches will be best-of three.

As the champion of the 2018 Intel Challenge Champions, Dignitas received a direct invited. They will be joined in Group A by ORGLESS and Assassins, both coming from the European Qualifier. Completing the group will be TiMe DaS LiNdAs, winner of the South American Qualifier.

Dignitas Female Wins 2018 Intel Challenge
Dignitas Female Wins 2018 Intel Challenge Intel Extreme Masters

Group B will have the other two European Qualifier teams, Besiktas and Crowns. North American Qualifier Counter Logic Gaming Red will be joining the group as well. The final member of Group B is Carnage Female Esports. This was originally Squared Prospect, but the team has since been picked up by Crowns Esports.

Winners and runners-up from each of the groups will go against one another and the winners will then fight at the Grand Finals. While the Group Stage will be done offline, the semifinals and finals will be in front of a live audience at the IEM Expo’s Ballroom Stage.

Serving as Stage Host for the tournament is Freya with Desk Host duties going to Lottie van-Praag. Experts on hand include MissHarvey and Potter. Jacky, Tombizz, and Snodz will serve as casters.

ESL Vice President of Pro Gaming Michal Blicharz said in a press statement that considering almost anyone can participate in ESL tournaments, there was no reason why there wouldn’t be a woman champion at what is one of the biggest competitions in the world. He added that the Intel Challenge was made with the goal of promoting “female role models in esports with the hope of inspiring more women to take up competitive gaming and try to become the best in the world."

Intel Vice-President of VR, Gaming and Esports John Bonini meanwhile added in the statement that “Intel is committed to delivering world-class esports experiences, and that includes creating opportunities for diversity with initiatives like the Intel Challenge to shift the focus of esports toward a more inclusive one.”

The Intel Challenge has its beginnings in 2015 and serves as a platform to allow female players to be able to compete on a global stage. The tournament is a collaboration between Intel, ESL, and AnyKey.

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