After TNC Predator directly qualified for the EPICENTER Major following their fantastic group stage performance, the playoffs began to determine the second team to compete in the last Major of the 2018-2019 DPC season.
BOOM ID, Power of MYSG+AU, Geek Fam and Fnatic were the four teams left vying for the final SEA spot in the Major. After Fnatic surged their way into the Grand Finals earlier yesterday, Power of MYSG+AU went through a gauntlet today.
Winter’s team took down Geek Fam 2-1 after a slugfest of an elimination match to set up a clash against Indonesia’s last hope, BOOM ID.
Power of MYSG+AU took Game 1, convincingly in just 19 minutes, against BOOM ID with a Wraith King and a Pugna as their cores, mowing down towers without any response. BOOM ID’s draft was simply not equipped to deal with their push, that early on.
Game 2 was far more even, as BOOM ID opted for a Drow Ranger strategy which ended up securing the victory in just 37 minutes. Game 3 was an hour long battle, with back and forth team fights. However, Power of MYSG+AU took control of the game, after a botched Roshan fight from BOOM ID handed the victory to them.
So 6 games and 6 hours later, we finally had our Grand Finalists: Fnatic and Power of MYSG+AU. Many expected Fnatic to stomp this matchup. After all, Fnatic is the number one team in SEA and is the only one to have already secured qualification to TI9.
But Power of MYSG+AU put up one hell of a fight.
In a quick and almost effortless Game 1, Fnatic marched their way to victory with a last pick Ember Spirit for Abed, who decimated the Power of MYSG+AU lineup with an 8-0-5 performance. However, the true superstar of the Fnatic lineup was iceiceice on his Timbersaw, he was an unkillable raidboss who kept on marching down lanes, while Power of MYSG+AU threw bodies at him to halt Fnatic’s push. Fnatic forced out a GG call in a mere 25 minutes showing that they simply were in a completely different tier.
Many expected Fnatic to stomp Power of MYSG+AU in Game 2 pretty handily after the first game. But it was anything but that, Power of MYSG+AU came back with a vengeance and overwhelmed Fnatic with a Huskar pick that Fnatic just didn’t plan for. Although, Abed managed to farm up a storm on his Medusa, he failed to have any impact on the game with a 0/5/1 score. The series was now at a 1-1, making the BO5 into a BO3.
Fnatic turned to a last pick Abed Invoker for Game 3. The pick turned out to be the key to their victory, as it allowed Fnatic to dictate the tempo of the game ultilizing Abed’s constant rotation with his Spirit Vessel -> Aghs build to the maximum extent. It completely minimized the impact of Velo’s Timbersaw and thrust them to a win that was almost as one-sided as the first game.
With only one game away from defeat, Power of MYSG+AU pulled out the tanky Kunkka+Wraith King duo-core setup in Game 4. Although they lost their laning stage, an incredible recovery from Velo’s Batrider allowed them to secure a net-worth lead and take control of the game. With an Ultra-farmed Wraith King, Power of MYSG+AU handled the immense pressure they were under and pushed the series to a fifth game.
Game 5 saw Fnatic turn towards their Drow Ranger strategy pairing it up with Abed’s Queen of Pain. Power of MYSG+AU, on the other hand, picked up a similar draft to what they’d gone for in Game 4.
After a back and forth early-mid game, both teams were pretty much even at the 30-minute mark, but a massive teamfight victory in the 31-minute mark, allowed Fnatic to gain a significant networth advantage from there on. They continued to boost their advantage, taking multiple objectives and geared up for the final teamfight with the Aegis of Immortal.
In a devastating fight which saw Power of MYSG+AU expend multiple buybacks, Fnatic teamwiped them with MP securing a Rampage on his Drow Ranger, securing Megacreeps and forced the GG call from their opponents.
Winter and Power of MYSG+AU will walk out of the qualifiers with their held high. They went through an absolute gauntlet, playing 11 games and almost took down a Top 6 team in the world. They still have another chance to qualify for the Major through the StarLadder ImbaTV Dota 2 Minor Season 2.
But for that, they’ll need to make their way through the solitary SEA spot. The qualifiers for the last Minor of the season kicks off in 3 days.