Day 1 of the group stages is on in full swing and already some wonky picks, shocking results and surprises. However, Fnatic’s 2-0 over EG seems to be the standout result of the day so far, as few expected the team to do well, considering they did a roster change going into TI9.
EG are known for slow starts in tournaments, so while it may not be the biggest loss for them, it certainly will serve as a big confidence booster for Fnatic who are taking on Chinese heavyweights, Vici Gaming next. Abed’s DK kept the momentum right from the laning phase till the end, in game 1. With iceiceice’s aura heavy Magnus providing additional tankiness, EG were never able to bring Abed down and ended up losing all their structures and were forced to call the gg.
In game 2, it was again Abed who became an issue for EG as his Medusa finished the game without a death and despite EG controlling the tempo for the early game, they were simply unable to halt Abed’s progress, which ended up costing them.
Mineski surprise TNC in SEA showdown
In the third set of matches, Mineski took on TNC, their SEA compatriots and while TNC were the clear favorites going in, it quickly became evident that Mineski were no pushovers. Despite a 20k advantage in game 1, they just didn’t have the heroes to close out the game as Gabbi’s Alchemist farmed across the map, leaving little for his other cores. Mineski had the heroes to be able to split push and kpii’s Beastmaster allowed them to keep tabs on TNC for the most part. Eventually, TNC found themselves in a hard place, having to rely on Gabbi for pretty much all their damage and it didn’t really work out.
In game 2, Mineski brought out their support Mirana, a hero which is looking like it will have a massive impact in this TI and along with Moon’s mid Tiny, Mineski were able to get a bunch of early pickoffs. While TNC were still in the game, a decisive teamfight at 25 minutes saw TNC lose all 5 heroes for a Grimstroke and the game turned as Mineski steadily started building a lead. Mineski started taking fights on their own terms, never allowing TNC to get their wombo combo off and eventually managed to close out the game.
Both TNC and Mineski will take on Chinese opponents in the next series as TNC go up against PSG.LGD while Mineski face Keen Gaming.