We break down all the action from the last of our Wild Card series in Singapore.
With three teams set to score a ticket to the Group Stage of the Major, we saw plenty of bloodbaths.
There were some slight schedule changes during today's series. In this article we'll recap the games shown on the initial Stream B schedule, as posted below; along with our unexpected tie breaker match!
Now, let’s dive into Day 2 and all the excitement!
ASM Gambit vs PSG.LGD
Gambit took a risk with their first pick Abaddon for Akbar “SoNNeikO” Butaev that gave LGD the draft advantage. Although they took first blood, it wasn’t going to be enough to shut down LGD.
By the ten-minute mark, it was the Chinese team who were taking control of Game 1. Cheng “NothingToSay” Jin Xiangg was unstoppable on his Void Spirit. Plus, the support provided by the Terrorblade/Tusk combo in the form of Wang “Ame” Chunyu and Zhao "XinQ" Zixing, made Gambit’s attempts to shut Void Spirit’s farm down quite the risky endeavour.
By 15-minutes, LGD were pushing for Roshan with a 4k lead in the net worth. It only lasted another 12-minutes before LGD secured their first win of the day.
Game 2 saw Gambit once again first pick Abaddon, likewise LGD again picked up the Tusk for XinQ. But this time it was a Morphling pick for Ame, making his top lane run a breeze. He had a Linken's Sphere in his stash by 13-minutes. Helping to put LGD in control of the gold lead for the entire laning phase. While Gambit did manage to keep up in the kill-count initially, things turned to LGD’s favor there too. As the game neared the mid-point, it was obvious which was the dominant side.
LGD snagged themselves another quick Rosh at 18-minutes with the aegis for Ame, and they were off to trounce Gambit’s base. They took bottom rax at 21-minues. Gambit mounted a smoke to try and push them back over the river, but LGD were unphased and instead it was Gambit who were sent running back to home base.
The CIS team called GG two-minutes later. Handing PSG.LGD a solid 2-0 victory.
T1 vs Team Nigma
Things have looked tough for the EU powerhouse at this Major. And Ivan “MinD_ContRoL” Ivanov’s absence certainly didn’t make things any easier.
Still, there’s no denying that this series was a brutal one.
Nigma’s draft in Game 1 was definitely something to raise an eyebrow. With a Mars pick in off-lane for Kuro “KuroKy”Salehi Takhasomi. Although now with a Mars game under his belt, team captain Kuro has officially played every hero available in Captain’s Pick.
Alongside Mars, Nigma picked Leshrac for Roman “rmN-” Paley and Amer “Miracle-” Al-Barkawi on Shadow Fiend. With Maroun “GH” Merhej on KotL and a Shadow Shaman pick for Aliwi “w33” Omar rounding out the line-up. It was a chaotic looking draft, to say the least.
And chaos is exactly what it brought them.
Up against T1’s clean draft; Karl “Karl” Jayme on Puck, Lee “Forev” Sang-don on Pango and Nuengnara “23savage” Teeramahanon on Monkey King, it looked like a mess.
Nigma managed only 14-kills across the entire 27-minutes. Meanwhile, T1 were there for a slaughter; locking away 52-kills total, with Karl’s Puck pick responsible for a full 20 of them.
Game 2 looked slightly less one-sided, but it still didn’t offer Nigma a chance for redemption.
Coming in very last in the Wild Card standings at sixth place, Nigma’s hopes for a slot at this Major, are well and truly over.
Vici Gaming vs Team Liquid
Liquid looked unstoppable yesterday, rolling through all their series and ending the day undefeated. But Vici Gaming dealt them a tough hand during their Day 2 match-up.
Vici’s Legion Commander pick for Ren “oLd eLeVeN” Yangwei seemed questionable going into Game 1. But as things moved out of the laning phase, it was clear it had been the right choice.
With plenty of support from Zeng “Ori” Jiaoyang’s Puck and Ding “Dy” Cong on Phoenix, eLeVeN had everything he needed to take duel after duel. Wearing down Liquid’s gold advantage kill by kill.
By comparison, Samuel “Boxi” Svahn’s Bloodseeker just couldn’t get the pickoffs he really needed to stay viable into the late game. After 31-minutes, Liquid had nowhere left to go as Vici took the win with a 30k net worth lead.
Our second game saw Ori stick with what’s been working for him, taking Puck again. But this time we saw Dy take Luna in position 4, and Pangolier on eLeVen. The result was a draft with plenty of map mobility that Vici could press to their advantage. Throw in a Terrorblade on Yang "Erica" Shaohan and an Elder Titan for Xiong "Pyw"' Jiahan, and this was looking like a very strong draft indeed.
Liquid tried to mix things up for this draft. Boxi took a Snapfire pick down to bottom lane. Leaving safe lane for Max “qojqva” Broecker’s Huskar, and Michael “miCKe” Nguyen’s Void Spirit in mid. They had valuable back up in the form of a Tusk pick for Tommy "Taiga" Le and Aydin “iNSaNiA” Sarkohi on Oracle. But the picks just didn’t pay off for them.
Liquid managed to hold out for 42-minutes, but in the end, they couldn’t break through Vici’s relentless offense.
The Chinese team’s 2-0 victory took them to second place in the standings, earning them a spot in the Groups. But, we can expect to see a rematch! Vici and Liquid will face-off again tomorrow on Stream B.
Tie Breaker – Team Liquid vs ASM.Gambit
Liquid had a tough second day all round. Also falling to PSG.LGD in their Stream A series. Tied in the standings with ASM.Gambit, it was down to a tie breaker match to see who would take the final spot in the Group Stage.
Gambit went bold with their draft picks; with Vasilii “AfterLife” Shishkin taking Enigma, Aleksandr “Immersion” Khmelevskoi on Spirit Breaker, and Wraith King for Kiyalbek “dream`” Tayirov. It was a monstrous side Liquid were going up against.
But Boxi’s Sand King provided them the counter they needed in bottom lane, and plenty of great initiation once he got his Blink Dagger at 14-minutes. Plus, qojava on Invoker in mid showed that Liquid meant business in this Bo1. He took the advantage in the laning phase easily, giving Liquid free reign of the mid.
Still, the stakes were high, and the game started with a lot of caution on both sides. Liquid finally took first blood past the 6-minute mark. And once Liquid picked up the momentum, they were difficult to catch.
The cool down heavy draft that Gambit were running just wasn’t quick enough to lock down miCKe’s Io, who racked up 9-kills on wisp throughout the 38-minute game. He still had the aegis active when they finally took the win over the CIS team, snatching that remaining Group Stage slot.
Whether or not Liquid will be able to keep their drive as the competition heats up tomorrow is still uncertain.
Stay tuned to ESTNN for all the latest Dota 2 news and daily recaps from Singapore!