Newbee are the first TI7 Grand Finalists
picture by Valve
LGD Forever Young’s undefeated run so far in The International 2017 main event had been cut short by Newbee in the upper bracket finals.
The LGD Forever Young vs Newbee upper bracket finals of The International 20177 had many stories aligned, as a victory for any of these two teams would mean not only a top 2 secured (nearly $4M prize money) at the biggest esports event, but also a shot at writing some great history in the Dota 2 books. Newbee reaching the Grand Finals is, in fact, a real shot for the organization to become two times The International winners, and the same goes for their support player Zeng 'Faith' Hongda who, at this moment is the only player left in Settle that can engrave his name on the Aegis of Champions for the second time.
At the same time, LFY’s Leong 'DDC' Fat-meng is the only player who has attended all the seven Internationals and is still fighting in this year’s contention for the most wanted trophy in the Dota 2 scene. So, with a lot of pride and money on the line, it’s no wonder that the TI7 upper bracket finals delivered some of the best games we’ve seen so far on the KeyArena stage.
The first game of the series began with a very fast paced draft, sign that both teams came with a clear plan. As somewhat expected, LFY opened with their famous by now Night Stalker and built towards a teamfight oriented line-up while Newbee for the first time in the event changed the page completely and drafted a “run at them” line-up. Their last pick represented a surprise as well, as Damien 'kpii' Chok got to play Axe, a hero Newbee never showed until now at TI7.
The laning stage went according to plan for Newbee, Xu 'Moogy' Han being sent into the offlane to be Du 'Monet' Peng’s Weaver nuisance while Song 'Sccc' Chun had no problem in the mid lane on Sniper. However, once LFY decided to start the five man Dota, Newbee found themselves seriously outplayed. At the 16 minute mark LFY took the first big teamfight, forcing Newbee to fight scattered around the mid tier one tower and the shrine next to it, and while Bloodseeker and Sniper were desperately trying to kill Xie 'Super' Junhao’s Medusa, their entire team died getting caught next to the shrine. From there on LFY snowballed into an unstoppable force, took control over the Roshan Pit as well and everything looked lost for Newbee.
Blocked in their own base, Newbee decided to make a bold move and smoked under tier three towers and went on hunting mode. They had vision over Weaver farming the bottom lane, close to his tier two tower, and they ventured that far for that one kill. They got counter-initiated but they still managed to make a 4 for 4 kill trade but forcing LFY to use two buybacks.
With Moogy, Sccc and Kpii getting six slotted, Newbee were able to contest a Roshan kill at the 43 minute mark, wiped out LFY in the pit and snatched the game one victory from their hands. The high ground assault looked easy for Newbee benefiting from perfect Blink-Calls on Medusa from Kpii, who kept her taunted while Sniper did the hitting buildings job.
The second game draft started identical with game one but as Newbee got tricked into match LFY’s supposedly teamfight line-up, LFY switched things up with a fourth pick Clinkz and a last pick Storm Spirit for Super. With their Bristleback totally losing the laning stage and with no real lockdown for Super’s Storm, Newbee got overwhelmed pretty fast. Again, forced to a high risk - high reward move, much more like in game one when they decided to smoke behind tier three towers, Newbee decided this time around to force a Roshan contest. Their fate was decided in a four-minute continuous team fight in and around the Roshan Pit, a fight that they eventually lost and were forced into a decisive game three.
The first round of picks and bans in the third game of the series went identical to the previous games, but Newbee had one more surprise pick prepared and went with Shadow Fiend for Sccc, also a hero that they show now for the first time in the entire event. While LGD were looking for a long split push game, with Monet on Morphling, Newbee had a very dominant laning stage, which enabled them to take full control of the game. By the 15 minute mark Newbee were leading LFY with a 1 to 10 kill score, and a wipe in the Roshan Pit close to the 30 minute mark, sealed the deal for them. However, with such stake on the line, the game dragged up to 50 minutes but LFY never got the chance at a real comeback.
Newbee are now the second team after Natus Vincere to fight in two Internationals grand finals. If they are going to write history this year in Seattle, for both their support player, Faith and for the organization, remains to be seen, tomorrow, August 12. The International 2017 grand finals are scheduled to kick off at 15:00 local time, 00:00 CEST.
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