The Group Stage of the qlESL Major Series Season IX is now finished and the Brackets for the final part of the competition are now known and published. As the top3 players from each group advanced to the playoffs, the 2nd and 3rd will play each others in the Eighth finals while the 1st directly advanced to the Quarter finals. All the matches will be played as best-of-5 and the system will be single Elimination. The first round is planned for Thursday 15th around 14:00 CDT!

During the Group Stage, a lot of players were removed due to noshows or inactivity (including some top seeds: Russia Cooller, Poland av3k and Belarus Cypher). In Group A, the classic duel match between France strenx and Germany k1llsen went in favor of the German player for the 1st rank and Ukraine Reaper took the 3rd place over Poland tox1c in a five-mapper. United Kingdom GaRpY had no problem topping Group B and is followed by Poland lotn1k and Germany smoke. Sadly, Sweden fazz decided to give up on duel and left the tournament.

For the Group C rankings, things weren't so easy. Sweden spart1e, Ireland kRoNic and France guismo were perfectly tied for the 1st rank at the end of the Group Stage. The 3 players had to go through bo3 tie-breakers (results can be seen on their respective group matches pages), and spart1e came out first after being able to take a map from guismo in the only 3-mapper! Finally, in Group D Netherlands Sc00t managed to defeat Russia agent after a deciding map to take the lead, despite his loss against Germany reload who's finishing at the third place.

Most of the demos and detailed results from the Group Stage are available. If some are missing, it simply means the players didn't communicate them.

Update: Some games are live and streamed on Russia c58. Also zoot and owzo should stream some, starting with strenx vs reload.

Links: Announcement, Brackets, Groups - mIRC #esl.quakelive