StarCraft II Groups Stage at IEM Katowice About to be Underway

StarCraft II Groups are starting soon in IEM Katowice in what should be one of the best tournaments of the year.

The Round of 36 for StarCraft II at IEM Katowice 2023 wrapped up this morning, and StarCraft II fans now get to look forward to the Group Stage that will be starting shortly. The tournament has already seen 12 competitors have their dreams cut short at this tournament after not qualifying out of the Round of 36. 

Meanwhile, tournament hopes for Classic, Cure, Elazer, and Spirit are still high after conquering the earlier round and being seeded into Groups with the other qualified competitors. You can catch all the StarCraft II action live on all of the ESL’s streaming channels. 

Players qualified throughout the year by performing well and earning points on the ESL Pro Tour Race. It’s fair to say that the 20 prequalified competitors in groups are the best of the best, and all have their sights set on the $500,000 and the title of World Champion. 


The 24 remaining competitors have been placed in groups of six. The winner of each group will get automatic seeding into the quarterfinals. While the second and third-place competitors will be put through another round of play. Unfortunately, those finishing in the bottom half of their group will have their trip to Katowice cut short.

Both the Korean and European regions had a great showing in the qualifiers round, each having two players move onto groups. There is no surprise to longtime StarCraft II fans in the fact that the Koreans have good odds that the winner will come from their Region, with half of the remaining competitors hailing from South Korea. Only time will tell if this tournament will be another of Korean dominance or if an unlikely underdog will be able to make a run to the top. 

Group A







Group B







Group C






Group D






Betting Odds

The first day brings some awesome must-watch matches for any StarCraft II diehard. The first one is in Group A between RagnaroK and Neeb in what oddsmakers are calling a pick ‘em. So far in the tournament, Protoss players are 11-8 in Zerg matchups. It’ll be interesting to see if Neeb can keep will be able to keep up the trend or if RagnaroK will be able to pilot the Zerg to victory. 

The other must-watch match is in Group B, where Astrea is a slight favorite over Creator. This matchup will see two of the best Protoss players in the world going against each other for early dominance of the Protoss-heavy group. Winning this mirror matchup would greatly help either player in their campaign for the World Championship.

All matches in Groups are best of threes. The first round of matches starts on February 9th.

Group A

Clem (-182) vs Neeb (+130)

Clem (-200) vs Oliveira (+140)

RagnaroK (-118) vs Neeb (-118)

RagnaroK (-182) vs Oliviera (+130)

Dark (-400) vs Oliveira (+255)

Group B

Astrea (+105) vs GuMiho (-143)

Reynor (-286) vs Creator (+195)

Creator (+130) vs ShoWTimE (-182)

Astrea (-125) vs Creator (-111)

Group C

Serral (-400) vs DRG (+255)

herO (+130) vs Serral (-182)

herO (-250) vs Solar (+175)

Solar (-222) vs DRG (+155)

herO (-833) vs SpeCial (+425)

Solar (-1000) vs SpeCial (+475)

Group D

Bunny (+130) vs ByuN (-182)

Maru (-455) vs Bunny (+280)

Maru (-333) vs ByuN (+220)

Maru (-1250) vs HeRoMaRinE (+550)