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The excitement is building ahead of IEM Katowice

Esports: Weekly preview

It is another crammed week in the world of Esports with the biggest League of Legends regional divisions up-and-running and the IEM Katowice kicking off in the world of Counter Strike: Global Offensive.


League of Legends: Second week of the LEC Winter concludes 

Ahead of the 2023 season, the League of Legends LEC underwent a format change with the season now consisting of three smaller splits - the LEC Winter, the LEC Spring and the LEC Summer. 

And the first of those splits, the LEC Winter, is already underway with week two coming to its conclusion on Monday. 

As it stands, G2 Esports are the division's pacesetters with four wins from five matches and they are -188 to beat Team Vitality, who are +138 to win, on Monday. 

Astralis, meanwhile, have made a miserable start with a 0-5 win-loss record and they are +250 outsiders to beat Excel, who can be backed at -350 to prevail. 

The condensed nature of the new splits means week three - which begins on Saturday - will be the final week of LEC Winter regular season.


League of Legends: ThunderTalk Gaming among those in LPL action 

China's LPL Spring 2023 has also already begun with each of the 17 teams involved in the regular season having played their opening matches. 

The third week of matches began on Monday and on Tuesday there is another double-header. 

ThunderTalk Gaming started their campaign on the back foot with defeat to LNG Esports in their opener but they are -250 to follow that with a win over +175 shots Team WE on Tuesday. 

In the other match, basement side Anyone's Legend, who have a 0-2 record, are -120 to get the better of Ultra Prime, who can also be backed at -120 to win.


CS:GO: Start of IEM Katowice 

Away from the world of League of Legends and off the back of the Blast Premier Spring Groups, the next S-Tier event in the Counter Strike: Global Offensive calendar begins on Wednesday. 

The Intel Extreme Masters Katowice in Poland is one of the biggest events in the CS:GO season and features 24 teams competing in a play-in stage, a group stage and playoffs for the first masters title of the season. 

There is a prize pool of $1million up for grabs with the champions set to scoop $400,000 and secure a place at the next masters event - the IEM Cologne 2023. 

At +450, FaZe Clan are favourites to win the event with Heroic, who finished 2022 strongly, +500 shots and G2 Esports also available at +500. Wednesday marks the start of the play-in stage.


League of Legends: T1 take on new-look Hanwha Life Esports 

South Korea's LCK was the standout League of Legends division in 2022 with three of the four semi-finalists at last year's World Championship hailing from the region. 

T1 are expected to go well again this year and are serious Worlds contenders with the event taking place in South Korea and they are -350 to win their next LCK Spring 2023 match against Hanwha Life Esports, who were busy in the offseason but have started poorly and are +250 to prevail.


League of Legends: Gen.G and KT Rolster in action in LCK Spring 

There is more LCK Spring 2023 action on Friday with big-hitters Gen.G Esports in action and priced at -333 to beat Liiv SANDBOX, who are +240 to come out on top. 

In the other LCK Spring match on Friday, KT Rolster feature and are -500 to get the better of Kwangdong Freecs.


CS:GO: IEM Katowice group stage gets underway 

The IEM Katowice moves at a swift pace this week and on Saturday it will be time for the beginning of the event's group stage. 

Team Liquid, Natus Vincere, G2 Esports and FaZe Clan will start the event at this point in Group A, while Heroic, MOUZ, Team Vitality and Outsiders are already set to start in Group B.


League of Legends: Edward Gaming and Royal Never Give Up clash in LPL Spring 

The week concludes with more matches in the League of Legends LPL Spring in China and there is a big match on the cards as Edward Gaming take on Royal Never Give Up. 

Edward Gaming were world champions as recently as 2021, while Royal Never Give Up won both the LPL Spring 2022 and last year's Mid-Season Invitational. 

It's a clash of the big guns and Edward Gaming are -150 to win, while punters can back Royal Never Give Up at +110.

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