The International Main Event – Day 3 Recap

A couple of heartbreaks, a couple of setbacks, and four sets of happy Dota players


Unlike the first two days of TI11’s Main Event, Day 3 wasn’t all straight sweep results, and involved two of the most hard-fought, entertaining matches in the entire tournament so far, and both in the Lower Bracket for increased stakes. If you’re looking to catch up on today’s matches before tomorrow’s, here’s a brief look at each and every game that took place.

OG vs Gaimin Gladiators

One of the hottest matchups of the last DPC season, this one was always going to be a thriller owing to the amount of animosity between the two teams. Both teams have fluid, fast playstyles and love taking fights, so it was a brutal series with plenty of back-and-forth. OG’s new roster has everything to prove on the biggest of stages, while the Gladiators needed to justify the slot they earned via the DPC with a decent placement at the event.

Game 1

By far the most straightforward game of the series, the first game saw OG go with Slardar, Invoker, and Monkey King cores alongside Snapfire and Naga Siren support. This was in response to GG’s Enchantress, Shadow Fiend, Underlord, Tiny and Silencer.

The game remained pretty even for the first 20 or so minutes, but after OG found multiple pickoffs in quick succession, they gained an advantage that GG just had no answer to. Their SF kept getting killed off, and OG’s Heroes just became out of control. The game came to an end in the 40th minute after OG managed to get a dieback on most of GG’s Heroes without any losses on their part.

Game 2

This one was a cracker that involved a whopping 84 kills over a period of around 54 minutes.  GG picked Crystal Maiden, Lifestealer, Primal Beast, Silencer and Storm Spirit for some rock-solid teamfight combined with good burst and disruption. OG’s picks of Viper, Pangolier, Jakiro, Faceless Void and Clockwork were good, but were set up to inevitably be outscaled.

Things got in OG’s favor very quickly, with both teams having very close fights but OG building up a decent advantage over time. However, GG were able to break this lead down by taking some excellent teamfights, and OG’s inability to close the game out earlier cost them dearly as their opponents came back to snatch the match away from them

Game 3

Where Game 2 was a comeback by GG, Game 3 was a classic OG reprisal. GG took an early lead courtesy of their SF, Kunkka, Beastmaster, Undying and Disruptor. OG’s picks of Sand King, Jakiro, Invoker, Naga Siren and Mirana were powerful, but struggling to hold on against the might of GG.

GG’s lead wasn’t something ridiculous, but it was certainly tangible. However, OG is a team that never quits, and they kept taking trades every teamfight, getting something back every time they lost someone. Eventually, they took the lead, and simply never looked back. They closed out the series 2-1 and will meet Team Liquid tomorrow.

Entity vs Team Liquid

The new squad of the TI7 winning team still has plenty to achieve, but stumbled in their first TI Main Stage match to get down into the Lower Bracket. When they went up against Entity, the ice-cool, measured approach of both teams created a real battle of wits.

Game 1

Going a bit greedy with Arc Warden, Slardar, Naga Siren, CM, and Tiny, Entity was ambitious and looking to defend into the late game. Liquid, on the other hand, had a lineup more geared for the mid-game with Spiritbreaker, Lifestealer, Enigma, Leshrac and Lich.

This game was almost all Liquid, with Entity barely getting anything right. The blue horse dominated the game through and through, and Entity could hardly put a step right as they were crushed 21-6 on kills and had to tap out in the 34th minute.

Game 2

In the next game, it was Entity who prevailed with their Undying, Tiny, Leshrac, Clockwork and Sniper. The lineup had very high catch and burst potential along with sustained DPS, magic damage, and even healing. Liquid’s draft of Snapfire, Lina, Tusk, Pudge and Enigma was more reliant on magic damage with a solitary source of DPS.

Liquid kept getting kills on the Entity Sniper early on, and it looked as though they’d dominate the game. Entity had other plans, though, and struck back with a big teamfight. They began to build their advantage until getting a full teamwipe in the 29th minute, and their lead became unassailable from that moment onwards.

Game 3

By far the most hotly-contested, entertaining game. This time it was Entity with a draft focused around the mid-game with Broodmother, Tiny, Puck, Jakiro and Pudge. Liquid on the other hand went with better scaling Heroes in Enigma, Spiritbreaker, Ember Spirit, CM, and Lifestealer.

Despite some early kills from Liquid, Entity soon began showing their expected mid-game dominance. They held on to the lead right up until the 44th minute, when a huge teamfight saw Liquid destroy the opposition, take over the game, and close it out 7 minutes later.

Thunder Awaken vs Team Secret

It was the hope of the Peruvian renegades versus the might of the European giants, and the latter was imperious. Thunder Awaken looked to be out of their depth, and although they put up a good fight in the first game, the second was completely one-sided. Props to Secret for making it to their second Winner Bracket Final of TI in as many years, though.

Game 1

In Game 1, Secret’s draft centered around two strong scaling cores — Leshrac and Drow — with Disruptor, Earth Spirit and an offlane Marci setting things up for them. Thunder’s draft was pretty team-fight oriented with Snapfire, Pangolier, Mars and CM, but their carry Morphling was their only source of sustained DPS, and it just had too many counters on the other side.

As expected against a Drow lineup, things began well for Thunder as they held a small gold lead for the first 20+ minutes. Things quickly changed as Secret took some massive teamfights, with some insane plays coming out from the two main cores. After a big fight involving diebacks on the Thunder side in the 40th minute, it was all but over, and Secret ended things in the 45th minute.

Game 2

Secret went with Lesh and Marci again, but this time added Kunkka, Ursa and Silencer. Thunder drafted Nyx, Tide, Zeus, CM and Slark.

There’s not much to be said about this game. Almost all of Thunder’s chances were slowly sapped away by constant pickoffs, dominating teamfights, map control and just sheer oppression from Secret. The massacre ended a little after 40 minutes, but it really was over long, long before that.

Tundra Esports vs Team Aster

Aster was the last Chinese hope in the Upper Bracket and only one of two teams from the region still in competition, but newcomers Tundra saw to it that they were knocked down as the European squad bulldozed their way to the final.

Game 1

Tundra’s picks for Game 1 were Lich, Chaos Knight, Pangolier, Doom and Mirana. Many people thought the draft didn’t have the kind of teamfight control required, but they simply outplayed their opponents, who had a more balanced draft of Mars, Marci, CM, Razor and Slark.

After about 20 minutes of tight competition, this one devolved to yet another unilateral game. Tundra’s lead kept growing as they continued to find regular pickoffs and win any teamfights that broke out, and at one point their gold lead just got too much for Aster to handle. Once again, although the game took almost 50 minutes to end, it was just a slow, methodical highground push that caused it to go on for that long.

Game 2

Unlike Game 1, this was a testament to Tundra’s maturity as they fought back from behind. They had Mirana, Tiny, Zeus, Brood and Slark, while Aster went with Dawkbreaker, Shadow Fiend, Marci, Snapfire and Storm Spirit.

Aster got plenty of value from their Heroes early on and almost until the mid-game, but after that, Tundra began finding and killing the Storm many times in rapid succession, pushing him far behind on the net worth chart. There are few things more useless in Dota than an underfarmed, underleveled Storm Spirit, and it spelled doom for the Chinese side as Tundra closed it out in the 41st minute.

Join us again tomorrow as we discuss the developments on the fourth day of play. And don’t forget you’ll find the latest esports news, game guides and Dota 2 betting tipsright here on ESTNN.

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