Dynasty, Spitfire advance to OWL playoffs

Members of the London Spitfire react to their 4-3 win against the Shanghai Dragons during the Overwatch League playoff play-in tournament on Saturday at Blizzard Arena in Burbank, California. London, the defending OWL champion, advanced to the playoffs. Photo by Ben Pursell/Provided by Blizzard Entertainment

The London Spitfire and Seoul Dynasty have advanced to the $3.5 million Overwatch League playoffs with victories Saturday in the second night of the play-in tournament at Blizzard Arena in Burbank, California.

The Spitfire edged the Shanghai Dragons 4-3 in the first match of the day, while the Dynasty topped the Guangzhou Charge 4-1 in the evening tilt to round out the field for the playoffs, which start Thursday.

All play-in and playoff matches run until one team wins four maps. In both cases Saturday, a tie meant overtime was required.

The Spitfire, who had a bye Friday, won on Busan and on Numbani before the Dragons took Hanamura. London rebounded with a 5-4 win on Watchpoint: Gibraltar but lost 2-1 on Lijiang Tower before a 3-3 tie on King's Row. Shanghai made things interesting with a 3-1 win on Dorado before ultimately falling 2-1 on Ilios.

The Dynasty, meanwhile, took 2-1 wins on Busan and King's Row before the Charge could force a 5-5 tie on Horizon Lunar Colony. Ghangzhou then won 3-2 on Rialto, but Seoul sealed the match with 2-0 and 4-3 wins on Lijiang Tower and Eichenwalde, respectively. Like London, Seoul had been on a bye Friday.

Shanghai had advanced with a 4-2 win over the Philadelphia Fusion, while Ghangzhou had defeated the Chengdu Hunters 4-1.

The eight-team, double-elimination playoff bracket begins with first-round matches Thursday and Friday, starting with the top-seeded Vancouver Titans against the Dynasty. The first round of the losers bracket will be played Sept. 7, with the second round of the winners bracket a day later. All remaining matches but the final will be played Sept. 12-15.

The Spitfire's first opponent will be the New York Excelsior on Friday.

The final is set for Sept. 29 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, with the champion taking home $1.1 million and the runner-up pocketing $600,000.

-- Field Level Media