Aurora Suffers Shock Elimination in ESL One Birmingham 2024 SEA Closed Qualifier Round 1
Aurora suffered a shock defeat on the first day of ESL One Birmingham 2024: Southeast Asia (SEA) Closed Qualifier to get eliminated after being considered one of the top favorites. The team fell to Neon Esports, which had made its way through the open qualifier, and then to Execration in the lower bracket. As both series went to three games, Aurora emerged as the victor whenever it played a quick style of Dota 2 but suffered in other games where it played relatively slower or had poorer early games. The team’s early elimination in the ESL One Birmingham 2024 SEA Closed Qualifier comes as a significant setback, especially considering its participation in upcoming tier one tournaments like BetBoom Dacha Dubai and DreamLeague S22.
Aurora loses back to back series in ESL One Birmingham 2024 SEA Closed Qualifier to get eliminated
In its first series of the qualifier, Aurora took on Neon Esports, a team it had beaten with considerable ease just a few days earlier in the SEA qualifier for DreamLeague S22.
In the opening match of the series, both teams chose a mid game composition, and after a fairly even laning stage, it was Neon who punished Nuengnara "23savage" Teeramahanon's Alchemist to prevent Aurora's momentum from kicking in, eventually winning in 35 minutes.
Aurora picked more comfortable picks in the second game and showcased its prowess, leveling the series at one game apiece.
In the third game, Aurora had moments of success, but its opponents' excellent target prioritization led it to pull off a massive series win.
Julius "JG" Galeon dominated as Magnus for Neon, playing a crucial role in securing victories in both the first and third games. Aurora would question its decision to provide him with the hero in the third game after he had gone 11-0-22 in the first.
An hour after this unexpected loss, Aurora faced Execration, which had replaced its carry player before this qualifier. Aurora started well this time around, registering an emphatic win in 27 minutes.
In the second game, the team seemingly got caught off guard by Execration's last pick Meepo, who led the team to a 36 minute victory.
Execration came prepared in the third game, focusing heavily on Armel "Armel" Tabios in the midlane and 23savage in the safelane, killing their heroes a combined total of six teams inside the first ten minutes.
Aurora stabilized in the midgame with some over aggression from Execration, but the draft that the latter had allowed it to prevail in the late game.
As it stands, Aurora, despite being the favorite, has been eliminated in the first round. It's uncommon to witness its core players struggling, with both Armel and 23savage facing a challenging day.
The failure to qualify for ESL One Birmingham 2024 will dent the team's chances of receiving a direct invite to the Riyadh Masters later this year, but its focus now shifts on the upcoming BetBoom Dacha and then DreamLeague S22, where it can win some important ESL Pro Tour (EPT) points.