Intel Challenge Katowice 2019 Preview

The first female tournament of the year is about to take place in the industrial city of Katowice, Poland.

Freelance Esports Writer
8th Feb, 19·☕️ 6 min read

8 Teams | Prize Pool: $50,000 USD Start Date: 2019–02–28 | End Date: 2019–03–02 Defending Champion: Team Dignitas fe Format: GSL | Groupstage: BO1 | Playoffs: BO3


  • Team Dignitas fe
  • Beşiktaş Esports
  • CLG Red
  • Carnage Esports Female
  • TiMe DaS LiNdAs
  • Assassins
  • Squared Prospects
  • Orgless fe

Competition Information

The first female tournament of the year is about to take place in the industrial city of Katowice, Poland. A city that has brought us many great matches throughout the years and has been a premier location for CS:GO tournaments since 2014. Eight of the best female teams in CS:GO will battle it out for the first place prize of $25,000.

The tournament format will be GSL with BO1s in the group stage and BO3s in the playoffs and the tournament kicks off February 28th.

Last year’s champion, Team Dignitas fe, will be looking to defend their title in Poland against a field which consists of some of the best female teams in the world. The roster which hoisted the trophy at last year’s tournament remains largely intact, with the exception being last year’s MVP Mounira ‘GooseBreeder’ Dobie who left the team last summer. (Which for the record has to be one of the best nicknames in all of esports, alongside former SC2 competitor FruitDealer.)

With GooseBreeder leaving the team, the defending champions opted to reunite with former teammate Catherine ‘CAth’ Leroux. She has looked impressive since reuniting with her former teammates, leading her team in Rating (1.15), Kills (436) and K/D (+27). Look for the Canadian duo of CAth and rain to play a big part for the team if they are to defend their title in Poland.

Dignitas CAth CAth must be a difference-maker for Team Dignitas if they are to defend their title in Poland.

The Current Season

The defending champions will be facing competition from Beşiktaş Esports. Fan favorites Zainab ‘zAAz’ Turkie and Julian ‘juliano’ Kiran were picked up by the Turkish organization last summer, which saw football club Beşiktaş make their first venture into CS:GO with the acquisition of RES Gaming. zAAz and juliano have both been at the top of the female CS:GO scene for quite some time now, winning this tournament on three different occasions. But last year they had to settle for third place as Dignitas got the best of them in the semi-finals. The years prior they were a dominant force with a star-studded roster which included Michaela ‘mimi’ Lintrup and Ksenia ‘vilga’ Kluenkova, two of Europe’s best female players. Together they won this tournament both in 2016 and 2017 under the banner of Team Secret and WRTP. These two have since left the roster and have been replaced by Petra ‘Petra’ Stoker, Meyssa ‘Missa’ Bellouati and Anastasia ‘kr4sylya’ Khlobystina. The latter is only 17 years old and vastly inexperienced so it will be up to the veterans of the roster to lead the way if Beşiktaş wants to challenge for the title in Poland.

zAAz zAAz will be looking to start the year by adding another title to her already impressive resumé.

The North American side, CLG Red, will be looking to improve on a disappointing 7–8th place finish at last years tournament. They have since bolstered their roster by picking up last years winner and top performer Mounira ‘GooseBreeder’ Dobie from the defending champions, Team Dignitas.

The Canadian entry fragger was at the top of the board of most of the statistical categories for Dignitas when they hoisted the trophy last year. The most staggering statistic has to be that she attempted a team-high 37.2% of her teams opening kills with a 65.6% success rate. She attempted more than twice as many opening duels as anyone else on the roster and had the highest success rate doing so. A very impressive statistic for one of the most difficult roles in the game.

She will be joined by veteran Diane ‘di^’ Tran who finished in second place at this tournament in 2016 and 2017. The awper was one of the stand-out performers at Copenhagen Games 2018 as she carried her team to a third-place finish with a staggering 1.90 K/D ratio and a total rating of 1.48. It’s also worth keeping an eye on Emma ‘Emy’ Choe, who joined CLG Red back in late 2017. She has looked solid since joining and will likely be one of the key players for the team.

GooseBreeder Will GooseBreeder prevent her former teammates from hoisting the trophy yet again?

Another potential challenger for the title is the newly formed roster; Assassins. The team is of mixed nationality and features star duo Michaela ‘mimi’ Lintrup and Ksenia ‘vilga’ Kluenkova who won this tournament together in 2016 and 2017. Joining them will be Alyona ‘Candy’ Kuvaeva and Kelly ‘KllyVe’ Verhaegen who played together in several teams all throughout 2018, as well as American Klaudia ‘klaudia’ Beczkiewicz who just recently moved to London, England.

During the qualifiers, it was no surprise to see mimi lead the way for the team in most of the statistical categories. The Dane is highly regarded as one of the best female players in the world and it will be of utmost importance to the team that she performs to her potential if they’re to hoist the trophy in Poland.

The rest of the team are no slouches either. Candy was a standout performer for Team Singularity fe and Russian Forces and she spearheaded her teams to multiple titles in 2018. The same goes for vilga who was one of the MVPs at this tournament back in 2017 when she hoisted the trophy alongside mimi.

Team Assassins is definitely an interesting team. They have enough skill and experience to challenge the likes of Dignitas fe and Beşiktaş and it would not be surprising to see them go all the way in Poland.

It’s also worth noting that the recent update which saw changes to the AUG should benefit Carolyn ‘artStar’ Noquez who picked up the weapon at times during the WESG Regional Finals.


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