The International 2019 is slowly but steadily coming to an end. Following today's’ games, there are only five teams after today we waved goodbye to two more teams. Let’s take a look at what happened during the games.
Royal Never Give Up vs Team Liquid
One quick game (and one not so quick one 🙄) later, we continue our run at #TI9!
— Team Liquid (@TeamLiquid) August 23, 2019
This was the first duo who had to go face to face to determine which one goes home. The Chinese team is having an amazing run so far, exceeding most expectations. On the contrary, TI 7 champions started this tournament very slow. However, they have been playing very well in their last couple of matches. In fact, they won both of their Lower Bracket matches so far with a 2-0 score.
Game one of the series saw a new hero at TI 9 – Nightstalker. Kuro “KuroKy” Salehi Takhasomi and his team-mates decided to experiment a bit by picking him alongside the classic IO + Gyro combination which has proven to be one of the strongest ones during this tournament. As expected, the European powerhouse had little to no trouble and quickly took the lead in the series.
However, game two was nothing like the first one. With their backs against the wall, RNGU fought like lions trapped inside a cage and it was clear that they will not go down without a fight.
This turned out to be one of the longest games of the tournament – over 78 minutes. Even though there were tons of back-and-forth action for its entire duration, the late game was definitely in favor of Kuro and co. Both Aliwi “w33” Omar ‘s Tiny and Amer “Miracle-” Al-Barkawi’s Arc Warden were too much farmed to deal with.
In the end, the RNGU is the second Chinese team to get eliminated from TI 9. Having said that, they definitely earned the respect of their enemies.
Infamous vs Team Secret
Let go back and re-watch this incredible Roshan fight from @infamous_gg and @teamsecret as we get ready for Game 2! Can Infamous find a way to come back and tie the series? #TI9 pic.twitter.com/WHTIVp5oTK
— The International (@dota2ti) August 23, 2019
The second series of the day was highly anticipated. The cinderella story of Infamous might seem a bit surreal but the South-American team undoubtedly earned a name for themselves during this tournament. On the other hand, the DPC champions are playing very shaky after the end of the Group Stage.
Game one was very interesting because Infamous was able to pressure Secret since the start. In fact, at one point they even had a pretty significant advantage. However, Clement “Puppey” Ivanov’s genius picks yet again saved his team from losing. He drafted a very counter-PL picking around Yeik “MidOne” Nai Zheng’s Earthshaker who gave the South American squad a lesson which they will not forget anytime soon
Despite that, Phantom Lancer had a pretty good game but he was just unable to deal with the massive advantage of Secret’s cores during the late game.
We also got the chance to see a new hero – Riki. He was picked by Infamous but failed to impress due to its slow farming mechanisms.
— Wykrhm Reddy (@wykrhm) August 23, 2019
With just one game away for the next challenge, Team Secret just ripped through their enemies. Ever since they took the lead after the first couple of minutes, Infamous was just unable to keep up. Eventually, they had no other choice but to say GG and wish their enemies good luck.
Team Secret has secured a top-six finish at The International 2019. However, a team of their caliber will undoubtedly not be satisfied with this, so expect more action tomorrow when they will meet Vici Gaming.
In terms of Infamous, this is their best placement ever in an event of such caliber. They definitely proved that no team should be underestimated at such events.
Evil Geniuses vs Team Liquid
— Wykrhm Reddy (@wykrhm) August 23, 2019
This was the big match that we have all been waiting for. The two powerhouses are having an incredible tournament so far which made the outcome of this series unpredictable.
Game one was rather slow in terms of kills due to the fact that both teams decided to farm. Syed Sumail “SumaiL” Hassan was able to win the mid lane by a long shot with his Kunkka and EG used their advantage to pressure Liquid early on. However, having Tinker by their side made EG’s pushing options very slim. W33ha continued to farm the lanes as well as the jungle and he eventually got his core items.
Even then, nothing really happened until a very long team-fight on the top lane. It continued for over a minute and a half with dozens of kills, buybacks, and ultimates used. In the end, Team Liquid was the one who came on top and EG had no other choice but to prepare themselves for the second game in this amazing series.
The final game for today was another amazing skill showcase from TI 7 champions. Despite the fact that their laning was not the smoothest, they were able to completely shut down Arteezy and stomped EG during the mid-game. In fact, they had over 10k net worth advantage just 20 minutes into the game thanks to their Alchemist.
Unfortunately, the dream for EG ends here. Having said that, Team Liquid is looking very, very scary right now. If they continue with the same performance, we might see the first-ever two times TI winner.
Before that, they need to deal with the Chinese powerhouse Vici Gaming tomorrow. Be sure to watch the series because we will also find out who will be the first Grand Finalist.