Image Courtesy: Epicenter
After undergoing a minor roster shuffle which has bolstered their strength, TNC Predator lived up to their potential at ESL One: Hamburg 2019, playing some of the best Dota 2 we’ve seen all year.
The sole SEA representatives at this tournament put together one scintillating display after another, showcasing a wide variety of strategies and didn’t drop a single game on their road to a 4-0 scoreline at the end of the day.
They finished on top of their Group as a result, being the only undefeated team and look all set to claim the first position and secure a spot in the upper brackets.
TNC Predator vs Team Liquid
TNC Predator started off their run against Team Liquid. The European team has been struggling lately and only managed to secure a 4th place finish at DreamLeague Season 12. So it wasn’t surprising to see TNC Predator dominate them right from the get-go.
The SEA team utilized some great decision making combined with an outdraft, to easily secure a Game 1 victory with absolute dominance in the early-mid game snowballing them to a massive gold/xp advantage in the later stages.
Game 2 was relatively closer, as TNC Predator went all-in on the greed picking up an Alchemist lineup, but still choosing to build two Hand of Midas on their other two cores. Although Team Liquid managed to secure multiple kills, the SEA juggernauts never looked like they were under any pressure and continued to put their heads down and farm for the late-game. Once there, their superior late-game lineup just overwhelmed Liquid and secured the 2-0 victory.
TNC Predator vs Ninjas in Pyjamas
TNC Predator debuted the signature Nightstalker-carry that has been wrecking havoc in the SEA Regional Qualifiers against NiP in Game 1. It looked like it caught PPD off-guard as he simply didn’t have a plan to tackle it. The European team didn’t manage to gain a foothold in this game and just lost the game without putting up much of a defence in just 32 minutes with a 23-2 scoreline.
Game 2 was a far closer affair with TNC Predator opting for a Slark for Armel and a Leshrac for Gabbi. NiP, however, looked like they had the answers for this lineup with a Weaver for skitter who wreaked havoc on TNC all throughout the early-mid game.
A well-executed teamfight near the Radiant tier-2 was the turning point for this game. Two well-timed pounces from Armel’s Slark was all it took to finally catch Skitter’s Weaver and put an end to his kill-streak, which allowed TNC Predator to gain back map control. They used this space to farm up a BKB-Linkens on TIMS’ Enigma and an Aghanim’s Scepter on Kpii’s Abaddon which provided them with a win-condition.
The SEA team didn’t falter and perfectly used this opening to close out the game with one of the most high octane teamfights of the day which ended with Armel’s Slark securing 90 essence shift stacks and TIMS landing a 5-man black hole.
With this commanding performance on Day 1, TNC Predator has established themselves as the front runners for the championship alongside ViCi Gaming. The action resumes tomorrow at 08:35 PM IST | 11:05 PM PHT for TNC Predator.