OG will defend their Aegis at The International 10
Mind games, comebacks, unusual picks, clutch plays and incredible tenacity is what defined the TI10 Western Europe qualifiers grand finals.
Tundra Esports reached the final act undefeated, already delivering a huge upset when they took down OG 2-0 in the upper bracket finals. At the same time, down, but not entirely defeated, the double TI champions took the defeat as perhaps the greatest lesson in the qualifier run and struck back after having to cut through their friends from Team Nigma in the lower bracket.
Through all five games of the grand finals, OG were willing to let Tundra play all their comfort picks except one. Neta "33" Shapira’s Broodmother was first ban material through all five games. The first game started with OG forcing Tundra Esports to show more heroes than they did in the only six games they played in the qualifiers up to that point, by banning some of their most threatening choices, while picking their comfort ones. They took both Mirana and Tidehunter from Tundra after they opened their draft with Naga Siren, which proved to be the carry choice for Syed Sumail "SumaiL" Hassan, who went on absolutely dominating his adversaries for the first 35 minutes. The highground push was what stopped OG’s momentum.
Leon "Nine" Kirilin, with a 37 minute completed Daedalus on Lina, was the key factor in Tundra’s comeback. The amount of right click damage he was able to dish out on top of all the AoE spells, stopped the Naga carry and put Tundra in the lead.
Starting the series on the back foot, OG focused their bans on Oliver "skiter" Lepko, forcing him to play something out of the meta. His choice was Anti Mage, which was picked into OG’s Terrorblade and got utterly destroyed. A disastrous laning phase for skiter led to complete annihilation from OG, who despite winning in a convincing fashion, got totally stomped in the third game.
Nine was once again Tundra’s MVP on his signature mid lane Winter Wyvern. The game three victory marked OG’s second defeat in a row to Nine’s WW, after he was the one who sent them in the lower bracket in the first place with the exact same hero.
Interestingly enough, although they clearly didn’t have the right answer to this hero, OG chose not to ban it moving forward in the series. However, Tundra also chose not to pick it in game four and found themselves taken by surprise by a carry Templar Assassin buffed with the Alacrity buff from Topson’s mid lane Invoker.
Tundra got outmanoeuvred and pushed to a decisive game five, where OG were ready to show the perfect Winter Wyvern counter. Tundra had the first pick of the draft and went with the Abaddon for the overwhelming slow strategy they previously utilized with Winter Wyvern, but they didn’t realize that OG were baiting them into the pick. The answer came in the form of a Darkseer for Sébastien "Ceb" Debs and a last pick Disruptor for Johan "N0tail" Sundstein, who provided the vision and the catch tools to keep Nine controlled.
Unfortunately, Tundra’s commendable efforts were not enough to send them to The International this year. OG’s extensive experience of performing under pressure came in handy and will give N0tail and co the chance to defend their title once again.
The International 10 will unfold October 7-17 on the National Arena from Bucharest, Romania with a $40,018,195 prize pool on the line.
headline photo courtesy of OG via Twitter