Cover image source : ESL Dota 2
Day 2 of ESL One Mumbai kicked off with a banger of a match as favorites, Keen Gaming took on the highly entertaining CIS squad, The Pango. Both sides had good drafts and executions, but in the end, the experience of Keen proved too much for The Pango.
The Pango’s draft never really materialized in game 1 as all 3 Keen cores won their lanes quite convincingly. Lacking neither damage, nor control, Keen never stopped pressuring the map and the greedy Pango lineup crumbled under the pressure. Keen’s playstyle and execution was a great reminder as to why they have been considered as one of the favorites to win the tournament.
Pango struck back hard in game 2, catching Keen with surprise as they stepped up their laning phase, this time winning with a significant advantage. They built their teamfights around initiation and auras, with Enigma and Beastmaster both contributing heavily in both aspects. This allowed Iceberg’s Lina and Naive’s Morphling free reign in the engagements and the 2 cores were able to output, heavy amounts of damage to overwhelm the side of Keen Gaming.
By the time game 3 rolled around, Keen seemed to have picked up quite a bit in terms of what their opponents had to offer. By taking out key heroes in the ban phase, they forced Pango into opting for less of a teamfight and more of a pickoff heavy draft. While the game stayed even in terms of farm, the Keen teamfight was much easier to execute and Kaka’s signature Earth Spirit was instrumental in shutting down Iceberg’s Storm Spirit time and again. By 30 minutes, The Pango even with the farm and levels, found themselves getting constantly outmaneuvered and outplayed in teamfights.
Keen Gaming now take on TNC Predator, in the lower bracket semifinals while up next will the upper bracket finals between Natus Vincere and Mineski.