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Esports: VALORANT Crossfire Cup quarter-finals

One of a number of regional events taking place during the VALORANT off-season, the Crossfire Cup, hosted by the same team behind Spain's VLR league, is in full swing.

The B-Tier event initially featured 16 teams playing across four groups of four, but they have been whittled down to eight as we approach the quarter-final stage this week.

The top two teams in each section progressed to the knockout stage, which begins on Tuesday, and the remaining teams are competing for the lion's share of a €10,000 prize pool.

Featuring teams from Spain, Portugal and Italy, it should give punters key insight with the VCT 2023 season not too far over the horizon.

Here is a look at the first two quarter-finals taking place this week - Team Heretics vs KPI Gaming on Tuesday and Giants Gaming vs KOI on Wednesday.

Heretics and KPI clash could go the distance

WhatTeam Heretics vs KPI Gaming, VALORANT Crossfire Cup
WhereSpain, Portugal and Italy
When11.00 ET, Tuesday October 25th 2022
How to watchTwitch
OddsTeam Heretics -120, KPI Gaming -120

Team Heretics were pretty assertive in the group phase of this year's VALORANT Crossfire Cup, managing to finish top of their section with a 2-0 record.

They opened the campaign with a comprehensive 13-5 victory over 4Real - the team who eventually followed them through in second spot - before beating CASE 13-9.

Their reward for those two victories is a quarter-final against KPI Gaming, who placed second in Group A.

KPI Gaming were put on the back foot after defeat to Team Queso in their Group A opener, losing 13-9, but they comfortably overcame The Last Monarch 13-3 in the elimination before getting their revenge on Team Queso in a 13-11 win in the decider match.

And they look tough to separate going into the opening quarter-final of the Crossfire Cup.

In terms of how these teams made this tournament, KPI Gaming came through the Promotion Stage Two but Team Heretics were hardly convincing in the VRL Rising Stage Two, avoiding relegation by the skin of their teeth.

They managed to secure a spot at this event by finishing in the top eight of the Rising Stage Two but lost 11 of their 18 games in that tournament and it is hard to make a strong claim for them after their performances in recent months.

With that in mind, punters may be better-placed backing this one to go the distance and opt for over 4.5 maps at +162.

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In-form Giants Gaming can swat KOI aside

WhatGiants Gaming vs KOI, VALORANT Crossfire Cup
WhereSpain, Portugal and Italy
When11.00 ET, Wednesday October 26th 2022
How to watchTwitch
OddsGiants Gaming -188, KOI +137

The second quarter-final of the week, taking place on Wednesday, pits Giants Gaming against Gerard Pique-created KOI.

This looks a more one-sided affair with Giants Gaming much fancied to prevail.

The winner of the tie will face either Team Heretics or KPI Gaming in the competition's semi-finals and edge a step closer to the €4,000 on offer for the tournament winner.

It is easy to see why the Giants are expected to win this one.

They topped Group A ahead of KPI Gaming with two wins from two games, swatting aside The Last Monarch 13-6 and Team Queso 13-8 to establish a decent differential of +12.

And prior to this tournament they were one of the standout teams in the VRL Rising Stage Two, not only qualifying with a top-eight berth but finishing second in the regular season standings with a 12-6 win-loss record and a +32 differential.

They were knocked out in the tournament's semi-final phase but nonetheless showed their class throughout and they should be too strong for KOI.

The best way to approach this from a betting perspective could be to back Giants Gaming at -1.5 on the match handicap at +120 given how decent their recent differentials are, while under 4.5 maps could also be of interest at -225 if punters anticipate a routine win.

Giants Gaming can also be backed at -150 to win the opening map of the contest, while, for those feeling really confident about the side's chances, a 3-0 victory is available at +333.

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