WE make it an all-Chinese Grand Final
Posted by Kai "Treble1999" Chua 3 years, 7 weeks ago
China is set to have yet another representative at The International as World-Elite overcame a shaky start to beat Aeon 2-1, setting up a Grand final against TongFu.
From the get go the Singaporeans played a super-aggressive style, with their Trilane on bottom diving past the tier one tower to claim first blood on Invoker. This set the tone for the lane as Aeon attempted kill after kill on the bottom lane. So much was their aggression that the kill-score after 5 minutes was 5-5, but the heroes on Sentinel had only one kill to their name. However, midlane Fnty's Antimage was farming fairly well with the help of Lich's constant creep denial.
Aeon's gank-strat was working well as the game reached the 20 minute mark, with constant pressure on Anti-mage as well as Dragon Knight meaning neither were able to farm as well as they would have wanted. The Dire's ganks were clinical and effective, (very much unlike Van Persie's or the Dutch football sides) and forced Antimage and DK into defensive positions. A successful team fight on mid, with 3 WE heroes dying allowed Aeon to claim the first Aegis of the match uncontested.
WE miscalculated their pushing power and sent all 5 heroes top, with three of Aeons heroes bottom. WE's push, despite again dropping wards was halted by Prophet's Ultimate while he stayed at bottom and took out the tier three tower.
An extended fight at bot then ensued, triggered off by a good hook on Fnty's Anti-mage. WE held off the push until his revival, but then decided to chase Aeon's retreating heroes. Fnty must have been regretting his decision to go for stats instead of spell shield as a hook and Dagon left WE fighting 4v5. With all of their heroes on low HP, Aeon showed good coordination to teamwipe WE and take bottom barracks, then the second Aegis.
Another clutch hook by Pudge on Dragon Knight then allowed the Singaporeans to take top barracks as Anti-Mage was far from farmed enough to hold of Aeon. A Daedalus and Maelstrom on Prophet as well as a on him and QoP was too much as the Chinese called GG shortly after.
Aeon again went for some unorthodox picks in Clinkz and Bane, which WE countered immediately by picking up Slardar, but this signalled yet another interesting game in store for viewers.
Queen of Pain claimed an unexpected firstblood on WE's solo Windrunner at bottom lane, WE responded by killing off Bane on top in the battle of the tri-lanes, with Crystal Maiden, Chen and Slardar overpowering the Bane - SK-Earthshaker combo.
The second game, in stark contrast to the first had much less action as both sides took a methodical approach. The first major team fight of the game happened 10 minutes in on where else but Top with both Morphling and Queen of Pain tp-ing one after the other as the two teams traded kills on support heroes.
The trend continued until WE decided to push top with 5 heroes, a poor defense by Aeon allowed WE to kill off SK and they took both the tier one and tier two towers. On the retreat Aeon sucessfully caught out Slardar, with Queen of Pain landing a 4 man ultimate only to see it negated by Chen's heal and one head was all that Aeon could claim. WE then took advantage of the lull in action to take Roshan.
Morphlings decision to go first item BKB paid off when the Chinese pushed bot as he was able to negate the whole duration of epicenter and stayed alive to claim a triple kill, bot tier two tower also fell. WE smoked and managed to pick off Clinkz who unknowingly ran into a sentry ward. They then attempted to take Rosh but a epicenter-echoslam into sonic wave combo saw Aeon take out 3 of WE's heroes. However, the Chinese's second attempt at Rosh would prove to be much more successful and Slardar took the Aegis. The same combo at top lane once again proved successful as only windrunner and morphling survived.
Aeon tried a sneaky roshan attempt with QoP and Clinkz with Bane and SK as distraction on top lane, but were unable to kill it fast enough and WE managed to snatch it from them with Roshan down to just a fraction of its HP. On the back of that Aegis and Cheese WE managed to take bottom Melee barracks. The Singaporeans responded with a 5 man push on top and with superb coordination and reflexes pulled off a Echoslam-sonic wave combo yet again and only a buyback from morphling prevented barracks from going down.
That was the last attempt by the Singaporeans as Morphling was just too farmed and WE took Roshan and then mid raxes without much contest and eventually the game.
Aeon's picks signalled their intent for game 3 quite clearly: Shadow Shaman, Krob and Dark Seer to push, whilst WE looked to hold of the push with Venomancer and play a counter ganking lineup with Slardar and Queen of Pain.
The dual lanes of Venomancer Slardar and DK, CM was where firstblood occured, with the Dire managing to kill off Dragon Knight. Aeon replied with Shadow Shaman ganking off Wind runner on bottom, before a nice denial by CM preventing further gold from being spilled by DK at mid.
Aeons attempts to push were met with stiff resistence from WE, and wards plus powershots held off creep wave after creepwave. Two times Aeon tried to push top tier two, twice they got team-wiped and things were not looking good as Slardar picked up his blink dagger and WE yet again held off the push, this time at mid and killing off Death Prophet and CM.
22 minutes in, the scoreline was 23-7 in favour of the Chinese as they held off any and all attempts to push from the Singaporeans, claiming kill after kill from the retreating heroes. Aeon went all mid again, with Pipe, Shadow Shaman Wards and DP's Ultimate. In a closer than expected fight, perhaps only the Aegis on Slardar saved the fight for WE and eventually led to a team-wipe for the Singaporeans. A second attempt a few minutes later led to the same result.
The Dire were now too strong, with a 17k gold advantage and Death Prophet was yet again caught out by a good blink initiation by Slardar, allowing the Chinese to take mid rax. A smoke gank from Aeon caught out Wind Runner while the rest of his team took the Aegis and Cheese. Windrunner bought back and WE went for the final push with the scoreline at 48-17. A blink intiation yet again caught out DK this time allowed WE bottom barracks. The last stand of Aeon was fought out at top lane but eventually the farm advantage of the Chinese was too much and GG was called. WE through to the finals.
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