Starladder Berlin Major Review

Astralis have made history by claiming their fourth major title after defeating AVANGAR in the final of the Starladder Berlin Major.

Valentin Gustafsson
Freelance Esports Writer
11th Sep, 2019·☕️ 6 min read

Astralis have made history by claiming their fourth major title after defeating AVANGAR in the final of the Starladder Berlin Major.

Tournament Winner: Astralis


The Starladder Berlin Major has finally come to its conclusion. Astralis are your major champions after defeating AVANGAR in the final, becoming the first-ever team to win four major titles in CS:GO. The Danish side may have looked shaky before the player break with losses to the likes of Vitality, NRG, FURIA and their arch-rivals Team Liquid, casting doubt over the team that has widely been considered to be the best team of all time. However, Astralis seemed determined to make history in Berlin.

The Danes showed fine form throughout the legends stage, with their only mishap coming against a hot-firing NRG side. CR4ZY were able to take Astralis to three maps in the advancement match, however, Astralis ultimately came out victorious to advance to the playoffs with a record of three wins and one loss.

Astralis went into fifth gear in the playoffs, starting their revenge tour by defeating arch-rivals Team Liquid. In the semi-final, Astralis were able to trump NRG whom they had lost to in the legends stage. The final was in many ways a one-sided affair, as the Danes were able to completely neutralize AVANGAR’s star player Jame who was unable to replicate the form he had shown earlier in the tournament. A common trend throughout Astralis’ tournament run was that they made their opponents look defeated before the matches had even concluded, and the final was no exception. AVANGAR were unable to get more than six rounds, as Astralis took the series 2–0 to claim their fourth major title in front of a packed Mercedes-Benz Arena.

Featured Match: Astralis vs Team Liquid (Quarter-Final)

Pre-tournament favorite Team Liquid struggled in the legends stage, losing to both NRG and AVANGAR. They were ultimately able to make playoffs, after defeating mousesports in a hard-fought match which included overtimes on both maps. However, their record in the legends stage meant that they would have to go up against rivals Astralis sooner than they had hoped for, setting up a dream matchup between these two great teams.

The North American side has been on the winning side of the equation in recent times, however, this time Astralis had an ace up their sleeve; Vertigo. Many were surprised to see Astralis pick Vertigo in the map veto, however, the pick turned out to take Team Liquid entirely by surprise, as they had no answer for Astralis’ CT-Side. The North Americans were only able to get a single round on their T-Side, as Astralis closed out the map 16–8 to take us to Overpass.

Team Liquid started off great by stringing together four straight rounds, however, a stunning 4k by gla1ve in connector gave Astralis a way back into the game. Just like on Vertigo, it was on the T-Side that Astralis had most of their success. Team Liquid simply had no answer for Astralis’ constant B site barrage, as players like Magisk and gla1ve were constantly able to clear out a timid Team Liquid defense. Ultimately, Astralis were able to close out the map 16–13 in regulation to win the series 2–0. The win meant that their main competition for the title had already been brushed aside, as teams like Vitality and ENCE had surprisingly lost their quarter-finals matches, giving Astralis a smooth ride to their fourth major title.

Featured Player: device (Astralis)


The MVP for the tournament has to be device. The young Dane was brilliant for Astralis, leading his team in just about every statistical category. In addition, device was incredibly efficient at both the start and the end of rounds as he was consistently able to find opening picks with the AWP and clutch out rounds when it mattered the most. device usually excels against North American teams, and this tournament was no exception as he topped the board against both Team Liquid and NRG in the playoffs. The most impressive individual performance from device came in the semi-final against NRG, where he was able to clutch out a 1v3 in the pistol round with three bullets — a play that will surely be immortalized as a graffiti in the game. If that is the case, device will join the likes of olofmeister, coldzera, s1mple and of course, the almighty Dosia, who have all received a graffiti for their respective plays in major finals.

Best Bet

This was a tournament full of surprises. In the challengers’ stage, teams like DreamEaters and Syman Gaming were able to defy all the odds by beating teams like NRG, Vitality and FURIA. In the playoffs, it was AVANGAR and Renegades that took everyone by surprise by defeating ENCE and Vitality in the quarter-finals. Those who believed in these teams were able to cash in big. One of those that did was picklebet user “Dotagod”, who landed a very nice multi-bet as seen below.


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