The International 2018 circuit makes its next stop in Split, Croatia from 2 – 5 November.
Eight teams battle for a slice of the $300,000 USD prize pool in the AMD SAPPHIRE Dota PIT League. Along with monetary prizes, 300 Pro Circuit points will also be given out. Half of the prize is being subsidised by Valve, as per the new rules.
The tournament has been classified by Valve as a Minor. It is the third tournament of the season, after the SL i-League and the PGL Open Bucharest. The tournament is being held just a few days after ESL One Hamburg. We don’t expect any significant changes in team strategy or gameplay, but bear in mind this tournament will take place right after the new patch.
Team Liquid and Newbee, the two semi-finalists of ESL One Hamburg, were directly invited to the tournament. The rest had to secure their spot in the qualifiers. Four teams from each region fought in the qualifiers last week. OG, Virtus.pro, Immortals, SG e-sports and Fnatic will join them.
There isn’t a group stage. The tournament starts off with Bo3 quarterfinal matches. The losing teams won’t go home just yet. They will battle it off in the loser bracket, with their own finals Sunday noon (CET), three hours before the scheduled Grand finals.
Newbee vs SG e-sports
Newbee have more than proven they’re worth the invite. Their semi-final loss against Virtus.pro at ESL One, who went on to win the tournament, shows how strong they’ve been playing.
It will be very difficult for the South American team to do anything of significance here, we fear. Never say never though – the Brazilians are more than capable of pulling an upset.
Vici Gaming vs OG
Even though we haven’t seen OG in ESL One, where they lost in quarterfinals of the EU qualifiers, their top 8 placement in The International is nothing to scoff at. They perform the best after new patches, as well.
The team replaced ana with Resolut1on, one of the top team fight carries around. If the team manages to balance its split pushing strategy with properly timed battles, we might see a surprise here.
Vici Gaming, though relatively unknown to the rest of the world, have been making waves in China. They sailed through the qualifiers without a single match lost, beating the likes of LGD Gaming and Invictus Gaming. Such teams should always be treated with respect they deserve.
Virtus.pro vs Fnatic
Fnatic entered the tournament as second-place qualifier, after Mineski withdrew from the tournament. Thus, despite their lacklustre performance in ESL One, they’ve got another chance to redeem themselves.
It won’t be an easy task though, as Virtus.pro are on fire after beating Newbee and Team Secret on the road to the title of ESL One Hamburg. They’re on track to add some more Circuit points to their 2250-point strong tally since Team Secret, the other finalists, are absent from the tournament.
Team Liquid vs Immortals
The American-led Korean team, Immortals, beat OpTic Gaming in the qualifiers 3:2 to clinch the spot in the tournament. Sadly, they’ve stumbled upon the winners of The International and EPICENTER. Team Liquid looks extremely strong and they are certainly one of the top contenders for the title.
Though not as extravagant as the larger tournaments of the last few months, there’s plenty of action at the Dota PIT. In any case, it will be a great chance to see how the patch will affect the top teams.
Don’t forget to watch the matches on Unikrn TV. The first matches begin Thursday at 12:00 CET. Also, check out thier special promotions and bet with great odds!