IEM Katowice Counter-Strike qualifier dates and tournament format revealed

With just over two months to go, the Intel® Extreme Masters World Championship in Katowice, Poland is right on the horizon: qualifiers for the US$250,000 Counter-Strike: Global Offensive competition have been announced and will begin January 16. Eight top-tier teams will receive direct invites to the competition, with a further four to qualify, one from each of the following competitions:

More information regarding the upcoming qualifiers and competitions can be found on the official Intel Extreme Masters website and at

Counter-Strike tournament format in Katowice revealed

The Intel Extreme Masters Counter-Strike World Championship will be played in a similar format to that of previous years. Twelve teams will be placed in two round robin groups of six. The winners of each group will be placed into the tournament’s semifinals; the second and third place finishers will have a playoff to decide who advances.

The event’s group stage will be played behind closed doors on March the 2nd and 3rd, with every team playing five maps in total. Following the group stage, the remainder of the event will be played out in full at the Spodek arena, with both quarterfinals and semifinals on March the 4th and a best-of-five grand final on March the 5th.

* All qualified teams for Katowice will have their flights and hotels covered.
** Invitations have been issued based on the most recent Valve major. Should a team choose not to participate, invitations will be issued to the next available team in the ESL Power Ranking.

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