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Esports: CS:GO ESL Pro League Saturday matches

All focus in the world of Counter Strike: Global Offensive is on season 17 of the ESL Pro League right now and the S-Tier event continues in Malta with more key clashes on Saturday.

The ESL Pro League is one of the biggest events on the CS:GO calendar and season 17 began with 32 teams, divided across four triple-elimination groups. 

Only four teams progress from each group to the playoff stage and there is a prize pool of $850,000 up for grabs with the top team set to qualify for the IEM Cologne 2023 and the BLAST Premier World Final at the end of the season. 

As it stands, Group A has already concluded with four teams - Cloud9, Outsiders, G2 Esports and Fnatic - through to the event's playoffs. 

And in Group B, we are getting closer to finding out which other four teams will join them. The group's upper-bracket final is already set with Heroic and MOUZ set to lock horns on Sunday, while on Saturday the mid-bracket final takes place between FURIA and BIG. 

As for the lower bracket, Movistar Riders and SAW also lock horns on Saturday, fighting it out for a place in the lower-bracket final with the losing team set to be eliminated. 

Group B's mid-bracket final could go the distance

When15:00, Saturday 4th March 2023
How to watchbet365's Sports Live Streaming / ESL Youtube / Twitch 
OddsFURIA 8/11, BIG 1/1

This has the makings of a great mid-bracket final in Group B and the teams could be tough to separate with FURIA 8/11 shots to win and BIG priced at 1/1

FURIA's campaign started with a comfortable win over Imperial Esports before they were knocked down to the mid bracket by a 2-0 defeat to MOUZ. 

They then bounced back with a 2-1 win over Movistar Riders to reach this stage and it is fair to say the Brazilians have won the matches they were expected to win. 

As for BIG, they beat Complexity and then lost to Heroic - both by 2-1 scorelines - in the upper bracket before swatting aside SAW 2-0 in their mid-bracket semi-final. 

Both teams therefore have put up similar results in season 17 of the ESL Pro League and their tournament experience is also pretty similar - FURIA have not done anything special recently beyond making the last four of the IEM Rio on home soil last year, while BIG qualified for the IEM Katowice in February but made little impact. 

Both are adept when it comes to qualifiers and beating the lesser lights but struggle to go deep in these kinds of tournaments and it could swing either way. Therefore, the best betting angle in this one could be to back over 2.5 maps at 5/6.

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SAW can eliminate Movistar Riders in lower bracket

WhatMovistar Riders vs SAW
When15:00, Saturday 4th March 2023
How to watchbet365's Sports Live Streaming / ESL Youtube / Twitch 
OddsMovistar Riders 1/1, SAW 8/11

Down in the lower bracket, it is now or never for Movistar Riders and SAW with the loser of this contest set to bow out of this season's ESL Pro League. 

It looks set to be another close one with Movistar Riders 1/1 and SAW 8/11 to win but Portuguese outfit SAW are the ones to back. 

There has not been a lot between them in terms of how they have performed in this tournament but SAW prevailed 16-5 in a one-map contest between the sides in the OMEN WGR Challenge back in January. 

They also placed in the top two at the ESL Pro League Season 17 Europe Conference and performed better than Movistar Riders in the ESL Masters Spain Season 12 in November last year. 

Do not expect either of these teams to make waves in this tournament but SAW can at least give themselves a shot by making the lower-bracket final in Group B. 

This match could also go the distance with over 2.5 maps priced at 5/6, while a 2-1 win for SAW makes appeal at 5/2. A 2-0 win for the Portuguese side is 12/5.

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