Yatoro Reaches Out to XinQ for a Spot in ESL One Kuala Lumpur 2023 Qualifiers

Dorjee Palzang
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Two times TI winner, Yatoro shows his intention to join a team and play at the ESL One Kuala Lumpur Qualifiers
Team Spirit had recently retracted their name from the tournament stating health issues

It looks like Team Spirit's Illya "Yatoro" Mulyarchuk isn't satisfied with resting on his laurels. According to a new video, he playfully approached Xtreme Gaming player Zhao "XinQ" Zixing, stirring up an amusing and unexpected interaction in the lead-up to ESL One Kuala Lumpur.

The incident unfolded after Team Spirit, a prominent name in the Dota 2 circuit, announced their withdrawal from the prestigious ESL One Kuala Lumpur tournament due to health concerns. This left Yatoro in a lurch, craving competitive action.

Was Yatoro Joking or Serious?

Yatoro, the two times TI Winner expressing his eagerness to participate in the qualifiers for ESL One Kuala Lumpur, reached out to XinQ inquiring about potential opportunities. In the course of their conversation, XinQ, seemingly taken aback, asked Yatoro, "Is it real? You wanna join a team to go to ESL?" Yatoro, known for his affinity towards LGD Gaming's legendary player Wang "Ame" Chunyu, responded with a touch of ambiguity, stating, "Yeah, but on quals [qualifiers], not on the main tournament. You have some offer?" Whether Yatoro's message was delivered in jest or carried a genuine intent remains unclear.

XinQ's response added a comedic layer to the exchange. Highlighting the language barrier, he playfully informed Yatoro of the team's inability to communicate in English. Unperturbed, Yatoro humorously assured him that Google Translate could serve as their mediator.

Despite the lighthearted nature of their exchange, the esports community quickly realized that Yatoro's collaboration with LGD Gaming would remain a whimsical what-if. The ESL One Open Qualifiers had already concluded, and the Closed Qualifiers were set to end the same day, closing the window for any potential team-up.

A video capturing this amusing exchange surfaced, showcasing the stream where XinQ received Yatoro's message. The interaction, though not leading to any serious team changes, provided a moment of levity and camaraderie in an industry often marked by intense competition.

ESL One Kuala Lumpur 2023 will see 12 teams compete for a lion's share of $1 million in December, and will likely be the last premiere tournament of the year.

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Dorjee is an avid Dota enthusiast, he has been playing the game since it was just a map in Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne back in 2009, he transitioned to Dota 2 in 2014 and can't stop playing ever since!