Wildcard qualifier - a blog by ReiNNNN

Dota 2 Eric “reinnnn” Khor

First of all, I would like to apologize to everybody for not blogging about the players' dinner because I am not suppose to publish the photos I took there. As some would say, what happens in the dinner stays in the dinner. But I think everybody had a good time and the five players from Newbee 2014 was suppose to be awarded with TI champions ring but a few of the ran off before they receive it.

In any case, on this blog, I would like to focus on the wildcard qualifiers which took place today. I think many would have placed their bets on CDEC and Vega Squadron finishing first and second in the qualifier but personally, I have my eyes set on MVP.Phoenix. Perhaps it is an Asian pride thing but they are an amazing bunch of people and especially with March retiring after TI5, I really hope he will have a good run in this edition.

In any case, since the matches were suppose to begin at 9am in the morning, all four wildcard teams were very hyped and gathered in front of the tournament rooms about 15 minutes before it began. 


Vega Squadron getting ready. That Solo smile though.


Archon getting ready to fight


I'm not sure what they were laughing at but yeah, CDEC.


MVP.Phoenix was the last team to arrive.

Unfortunately, the matches started a little late but I think it is to be expected considering most tournaments tend to run into some technical difficulties on the first day. I am sure Valve has rectified the issue and it will not happen tomorrow or we will be in for a long day.

As the player move into their room, I went to the designated press room to watch the game but I left soon after because nothing exciting was going on there and also, the volume of the Chinese hub TV was a little too loud for me. I could barely hear anything from the English stream.


Designated press room. There are more people here than I thought.

So, I moved to the Puget Sound Room where the meals were held and I immediately noticed that they have installed three big televisions along the wall of the room. On one side, there were some Chinese personnel watching the Chinese stream, the middle was dominated by the Russian guys and their Russian stream and the far side of the room is where the English stream is at. 


Personalities, casters and players watching the games at the Puget Sound Room.


Dendi cheering for Vega Squadron.

The games begin. The patriotism is strong in the Puget Sound Room as you would often hear the Russian players and casters roar loudly as Vega made a good play. Me on the other hand, was stapled to the game between MVP.Phoenix and Archon because I was cheering for the Koreans. After witnessing game one, I was expecting the series to be one-sided because of how hard MVP.Phoenix destroyed Archon but I was wrong. Archon bounced back in game two beautifully and forced a game three after successfully pulling off an insane base race off MVP.Phoenix's mistake to linger around the Rosh pit for too long. However, MVP.Phoenix pulled it back in game three and move into the winner bracket final convincingly. 

I don't think anybody was expecting MVP.Phoenix to beat CDEC in the winner bracket final. Being the favourites coming into the wildcard qualifier, CDEC punished MVP.Phoenix's overaggressive tendency and swept them in straight games to be the first team to qualify for The International 5. Much congratulations to them. I was waiting outside their room to see their happy faces but they did not seem ecstatic at all. It was rather underwhelming

When CDEC won, all the Chinese media gathered in front of CDEC room to take shots but after they are finished, the whole bunch of them left as if the tournament was no longer ongoing. Absolutely no f***s were given about the remaining team and I find that quite funny.


"Just another day at the office"

At the same time, Vega also took down Archon in the loser bracket to deny the Americans a slot in The International 5. While I am sure there are upset about the loss, I hope they don't take it too hard and try again next year. They did take a long time to exit their room though.

Vega asked for a short break after their game against Archon because they did not have the opportunity to eat a proper meal. MVP.Phoenix also took advantage of the time to reveal their game plans.


MVP reviewing some strats over a ciggie.


Mag also enjoying a ciggie with Empire's manager Anahronix

All eyes were on MVP.Phoenix and Vega as the match goes underway and with dinner time approaching, the Puget Sound Room is now packed with players and casters enjoying the meal and the game. Earlier in the morning, the Russian hub stream was about 10 seconds ahead of the English one and they would often start screaming before we realize something is going on. It was a little annoying to be honest but this time, after Zyori refreshed Twitch, and now, we are 10 seconds ahead of time. Win!

The whole room burst out in laughter as the English casters try to imitiate the anticipating "oooooh oooohhhh" sound the Russians make during a teamfight. Here's a sample below.

It was a rather hilarious for about 5 minutes but it stopped after although I have to say there were a lot of "oooooh" moment in the second game between Vega and MVP.Phoenix. Barely hanging on to their tournament life, MVP.Phoenix backdoored their way to victory and the players were evidently happy as they exit the room. They carried the momentum well into game three and defeated Vega to be the second wildcard going into The International 5. 

I rushed to the room they were playing in immediately and found them hugging each other. I heard one of the Phoenix members said really loudly "I THOUGHT WE WERE GOING HOME. I REALLY THINK WE WERE!" in joy as they were in disbelief that they came back from a 1-0 deficit to win. They all hugged each other and it was just a very heart warming moment.


QO was actually rushing to the toilet. No seriously.


Group hug!


What's happening here..?


Probably my favourite picture.

I guess that is the end of my blog this time. Let's see what the groupstage have install for us tomorrow and until then, stay tuned to GosuGamers for the latest update from TI5!


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Eric “reinnnn” Khor
<p>I love pudding. I love Dota too. But pudding usually wins.</p>