These are the hard supports at The International 12 that will guide their team to victory.
Although some people like playing hard supports, there is no arguing that this position is not for everyone. The heroes that have to fulfill this role are usually really squishy and often die a lot more than the rest. Moreover, they need to make sure their team’s carry is having a good game, which is also not easy.
Of course, being hard support in PUBs is not the same as doing it in professional games. There are many world-class hard support players at The International 12 that deserve more attention, which is why this article will go over them. The biggest Dota 2 event will start a few weeks from now, so everyone will be interested in watching the best in action. They may not be the start of the match, but they have a key role in their squad because most players are also their team’s captains.
Aydin “iNSaNiA” Sarkohi – Team Liquid
Speaking of captains, the first name that we need to talk about is iNSaNiA, Team Liquid’s position 5 player. He will definitely be one of the leading hard supports at The International 12 because his incredible tactics have helped Team Liquid achieve really impressive results in 2023.
iNSaNiA is a player whose professional career started in 2015 when he was a part of Syn Esports. After that, he played for the likes of Team Doge, Prodota Gaming, Ninjas in Pyjamas, and Alliance. Similar to some of the other players from the current Team Liquid roster, he was a part of Alliance before the organization decided to drop them, which led to the roster’s transition to Team Liquid.
A lot of people may not remember, but this hard support became popular when he had to stand in for syndareN when the latter was a parto of NiP. In terms of the player’s best heroes, iNSaNiA is known for the following:
Melchior “Seleri” Hillenkamp
Despite being just 24 years old, Seleri’s professional Dota 2 career started in 2015. He was part of a lot of Tier 2 and Tier 3 teams over the years, but he became famous in 2022 when he became a part of Gaimin Gladiators. Considering his squad’s most recent results, there is no arguing he is one of the top hard supports at The International 12.
Since Seleri is Gaimin Gladiator’s position 5 player, it’s no surprise he is also the captain. We are yet to see the team getting out-picked in 2023, which means that Seleri definitely understands the current meta and is one of the top-tier hard support players at The International 12.
Jingjun “Sneyking” Wu
When talking about old-school Dota 2 players, we need to mention Sneayking. He is one of those names that has been around for more than 11 years and has tons of experience in several positions. However, he’s mostly focusing on the hard support role and is the current captain of Tundra Esports, The International 11 champions.
What’s interesting about Sneyking is that he played for more than 15 teams throughout his career. Before joining Tundra Esports, he was a part of Newbee, Infamous, VGJ.Storm, Team Dignitas, Cloud9, and many other interesting names.
Nowadays, he is one of the most experienced captains in the professional Dota 2 scene. What’s also interesting is that he became the oldest player to win The International, which happened when he was 27 years old. In terms of the heroes he focuses on, you can find the player with the likes of:
Alexey “Solo” Berezin – 9Pandas
One of the interesting things about 9Pandas is the fact that the team consists of a lot of young players. However, if we take a look at their captain, we can see that he is one of the most experienced professional support players in the world. No wonder a lot of people consider him one of the best hard supports at The International 12.
We can dedicate an entire article on Solo alone because the 33-year-old player has been a key part of the professional scene for many years. It’s no surprise Solo was a part of many big teams over the years, but most people remember him when he played for Virtus.Pro. Together with RAMZESS666 and the rest, VP was one of the best teams in the world. Sadly, it wasn’t able to lift the Aegis, so it disbanded.
Solo has been involved in a lot of controversies over the years, such as the StarLadder ban in 2013. Nevertheless, he has proven to be one of the best supports in the world and his experience will help 9Pandas’s young players because three of them have never been to The International before.
As for the top heroes, Solo is known for a lot of options, such as:
Jose “Panda” Padilla
Even though most of the hard supports are also their team’s captains, there are some exceptions. Evil Geniuses is one of them because Panda, their position 5 start, is not the team’s captain.
What’s interesting about one of the hard supports at The International 12 that you need to pay attention to is that he is relatively new to the professional scene. The 23-year-old began his professional career in 2019 and was a part of several Tier 2 teams before joining Thunder Awaken. After spending 1 year there, he decided to join the newly-formed Evil Geniuses and slowly began to dominate. The team secured a slot among the best in the world, but now it will prove itself yet again and do everything possible to win.
Panda is a typical position 5 player that uses all of the popular heroes for this role. However, most people will find him playing with one of the following options: