In a surprising turn of events, the Dota 2 Asia Championships group stage ended up with a 5-team tie between us, Team Liquid, Newbee, Optic Gaming and LGD Gaming. We had to play a new set of BO1 round robin games between each other to settle who would claim the top two spots for the playoff berths.
Interestingly, all of our losses in the group stage came from three of our 4 opponents namely Liquid, Optic and Newbee, but it didn’t mean that we would let ourselves succumb to another defeat come our matches with them.
Game 1 – TNC vs. Optic: Starting strong
We started our tiebreaker series with a rematch against Optic gaming who spoiled our DAC 2018 debut. Kuku started the game with a dual roaming support on his Rubick and Tim’s Nyx Assasin to help Raven’s Razor against the off lane Abaddon played by Neta ‘33’ Shapira.
Optic meanwhile went aggressive against Armel who had a hard time gathering kills on his Queen of Pain. However, they were unable to kill him thanks to his initial Veil of Discord and Eul’s Scepter build
Things went toe to toe until we found an opportunity to wipe them off in an engagement come the 19th minute mark. We eventually pulled off with a 10k gold lead in the 30th minute and wiped them off again after.
Optic tapped out in 36 minutes, giving us the win that we need for momentum throughout the series.
Game 2 – TNC vs. Newbee: Taking crucial pickoffs
Not long after our victory against Optic, we had to deal with another rematch, this time against Newbee. The Chinese squad drafted a lineup that can lane aggressively with the Rubick, Slardar and Monkey king.
They went for pickoffs against Sam_H’s Venomancer and Tim’s Sand King but they left our cores unchecked as Armel and Raven managed to outfarm their counterparts.
Newbee failed with their executions as we managed to get pickoffs on crucial stages, giving us favorable clashes that eventually paid off with another win for us to take a 2-0 score.
Game 3 – TNC vs. Liquid: Staging an upset
All eyes are on us as we begin our match against Team Liquid, who surprisingly dropped their first two games of the tiebreaker.
The game started with a slight gold lead for Liquid but everything boiled down to a 4v5 clash at the 14th minute mark. We wiped them out unscathed as Sam H went ballistic on his Night Stalker with a triple kill.
We rode the momentum as we continuously knocked Liquid heroes left and right until they called ‘GG’ win 29 minutes of action.
Game 4 – TNC vs. LGD: Going further
Having secured a playoff berth along with LGD Gaming didn’t stop us from going further as we endded our tiebreaker campaign on a high note.
LGD drafted a great combination of push and clashing prowess with the Disruptor and Naga Siren combo, along with a Beastmaster, Phantom Lancer and Shadow Fiend to complete a terrifying pushing lineup.
Kuku answered with a burst heavy lineup taking a support Leshrac together with a Dark Willow and Sand King for Tims and Sam_H. Raven went on with his signature Gyrocopter while Armel settled for a Templar assassin in a mid lane showdown with Lu “Somnus丶M” Yao’s SF.
Again, excellent warding became the key for our game as we secured kills that prevented LGD from setting up their plays.
Armel outpowered his lane to fuel the team’s quick and aggressive setups that eventually gave us the victory and the top spot at the tiebreaker.
Things are just getting heated.
We are now assured for a Top 8 finish in the DAC 2018, but we are looking to make it further.
For now, we have to wait for the results of the breakout games where we will face the winner between Team Secret and Vici Gaming.
Once again we thank all the fans who supported us throughout the group stage. We are not done yet and we will do our best to reach the top of the DAC 2018. Thank you and God bless!