As we are approaching Christmas, UKIC is hosting their third and final event of the year starting at 12 pm GMT with Royals vs Dripmen. This circuit of tournaments have the goal of providing a pathway to professional play for upcoming talent in the UK & Ireland. Not too long ago it was announced UKIC will be in partnership with CCT moving into 2023. Teams who compete in these invitationals will garner points and get awarded spots in the CCT tournaments starting from early next year.
Viperio vs 1PIN new rivalry
These two UK powerhouses have played multiple times recently, most notably in ESL Premiership Autumn 2022 semi-finals. Where Viperio dispatched 1PIN in a decisive 2-0 manner. The two also played a few days ago in The European Pro League Season 4 where they faced off for third place. This time the interaction was much closer with 1PIN narrowly losing 1-2. Both these teams are fighting for the best team in the UK alongside the newly unorged Into The Bin which UKCSGO dubbed as “The Three Top Dogs” in our “UKCS Experts Power Rankings” published last month.
Taking a look back now at this tournament, the bracket dictates that if they both win their opening games they will be facing off against each other in the semi-finals.
— UK & Ireland Circuit (@UKICircuit) December 13, 2022
Late resurgence for struggling teams
There are three teams that would benefit massively from a deep run in this tournament, giving them confidence going into next year.
First off is Dripmen, after just about managing to keep their spot in the recent ESL Premiership season, roster changes and losing their organisation, a win here would set themselves up nicely for the new year. Especially alongside their 7-7 finish in Advanced, which showed, despite their patchy form, the team still has alot to offer.
7AM, a young squad, filled with upcoming talents such as Zy “yz0” Esponilla, led by Oscar “LVN” Levin had a lot of hype around them. However it’s been a poor run for the team as they lost their ESL Premiership spot, and almost lost their ESEA Advanced spot. The team recently renewed their contracts, and by making a deep run here they could repay that faith.
The last team to touch upon would be ROYALS, but the team failed to return to ESEA Advanced. Even though they made ESL Premiership Autumn playoffs after beating Endpoint in the groups. With notable players such as Kyle “Swaggy” Wilson and Edgaras “entz” Luksas, a deep run here could dictate the future of this squad, and their first obstacle will be Dripmen. This squad had a lot of question marks over its head when first formed, only placing seventh in our “UKCS Experts Power Rankings” and seeding ninth in ESL Premiership proved themselves early on, but their main objective of making ESEA advanced slipped through their fingers at the first hurdle is a massive upset for this team.
Formally known as Into The breach, Into The Bin have been the main team that has competed outside of our region this year with superstars like Cai “CYPHER” Watson who has helped them win international LANs and also the first UKIC Beyond Invitational earlier this year. With their organisation not renewing their contracts, it is uncertain what the future for this team is especially after losing to Endpoint in the ESL Premiership Atumun semi-finals. However they did recently qualify for ECL Relegation and a win here could secure their place as the UKs number one.
Clique Esports have rocked their way up the UK scene and are dark horses having come through the second open qualifier alongside 7AM by beating eMasters. This squad have really turned some heads this past month. Their recent run shows the potential of players like Mohammed “Mophoria” Abbas and could they cause a upset to cap off a great end of the year?
Who needs the World Cup when we have the @Beyond Winter Invitational this weekend 🤩
— UK & Ireland Circuit (@UKICircuit) December 15, 2022
Games commence on Saturday at 12 pm GMT, Semi-Finals will begin at 2 pm GMT on Sunday, with the Grand Finals starting at 8 pm GMT.
1Pin vs 7AM – 6 pm GMT
Viperio vs Clique – 9 pm GMT