Manila Major Main Event – OG heads to the Finals, Liquid Eliminates LGD, will face Newbee for a shot at the Title.
Only 3 contenders now remaining, 2 from the West and 1 from the East, the last day of the Manila Major draws near and we all would know if who between OG Dota 2, Newbee, and Team Liquid will take home the much coveted title in the last Major before TI6.
A jam-packed SM Mall of Asia Arena bore witness to the tense action that was the Manila Major Upper Bracket Finals and Lower Bracket Semifinals, with back-and-forth exchanges, heroes being wiped out, and “nearly had it” moments became the centerpiece for Day 5 of the Manila Major. The first Matchup featured MVP Phoenix, the lone team representing the South East Asian region facing off with their comrades from China, LGD Gaming as both try to surpass each other in the Lower Bracket Quarterfinals.
While MVP Phoenix themselves has had a lot of great moments, not only in the Manila Major but throughout their whole journey as what seems to be South Korea’s lone pro Dota 2 team, the experience and discipline exercised by the Director, xiao8 and the rest of the LGD squad, has overpowered the rising MVP and thwarted their attempt to redemption after being mercilessly sent to the lower bracket.
MVP Phoenix will not go down unrememberd though as the sheer support from the crowd for the Koreans flowed through the stadium, most especially during the most crucial teamfights. While LGD Gaming is somewhat expected to dominate their opponent, MVP proved that they can fight as much as everyone else, and even manged to take a game out of the best of 3.
The upper bracket finals would look to be the most anticipated matchup of the day as it featured 2 teams that have been building up an East versus West style rivalry, and will possibly be enough to create a new “El Clasico”, the Westerners, OG Dota 2 and the Eastern Newbee. The 9K Fundamental, OG‘s Miracle- was put to the test to this series, as a hungry Newbee focused on the player most of the time, knowing what he can bring to the table if left unchecked.
With the challenge to carry the banner of big red to the finals, Newbee will secure themselves a Game from OG Dota 2 as they take the game 1 victory, with both Hao and Mu staying on top of the end-game ladder,easily surpassing Miracle– and n0tail. Retribution would be the case for OG during the next 2 games, as they bring in their big guns in what seems to be the longest hours of the day with the crowd constantly holding their breathe for the tense situation.
The tension continued on to game 3, as bigger guns were being drawn out by both teams, Newbee focusing on the early farm with Mu‘s Alchemist and Hao‘s Lifestealer, while OG going for the push with the Invoker back again on Miracle- and n0tail on the Lycan, but despite the said cores on both teams the highlight of the game would come from Fly and his Crystal Maiden, whose great placement of the Ultimate resulted in Newbeejust melting underneath OG‘s Damage output.
Newbee will then call the GG after a failed defense in their top lane, and will be sent to the Lower Bracket Finals spot while OG moves forward to the Finals, where they await their opponent and try to claim another Major title.
The final matchup of the day featured another East versus West combat, this time with 1 of the 2 left Chinese teams in the major, LGD against the Western squad Team Liquid. Both teams are being lead on by the game’s well known veterans, xiao8 on LGD and Kuroky on Liquid, with both on a long quest to win a Major title of their own, and reach the top spot of pro Dota 2. Aggression became the play for Liquid against LGD‘s patience, bringing in heroes such as the Lifestealer on MATUMBAMAN, MinD_ContRoL‘s Slardar and the Dragon Knigh on FATA- for Game 1, in a match that aims to shred LGD down to there cores and ultimately take the first victory.
LGD‘s hopes are still high up in game 2 as they go for the Timbersaw on Maybe and a surprise Terrorblade carry on Aggressif, answering to FATA-‘s Alchemist and the Slark from MATUMBAMAN. Things started to easily heat up during the early stages as Maybe grinds and shred his way right in the middle of Liquid‘s lineup, tearing everyone apart with blades and saws. The momentum was still able to go in the way of Liquid though as an engagement at the Radiant Jungle with a perfectly placed Ravage on MinD_ContRoL resulted in Jerax getting an Ultra Kill on his Support Disruptor.
LGD would not be giving Liquid an easy time though as Maybe continued to lead his team in pickoffs and teamfights netting important kills for the squad and even forcing Liquid to throw away skills and ultimates on their heroes during teamfights, and went as far as taking 2 sets of Barracks.
However, the biggest problem for LGD is the fact that they have left FATA- unchecked most of the time, and was able to rack up so much farm that he ended up feeding Aghanim’s Scepters to his teammates, all except Kuroky. Now Liquid with an overfarmed Alchemist, 4 Aghanim’s Scepters and 2 Refresher’s Orbs will proceed to end the game, coming back from a double-barracks deficit and will be off to face Newbee in the Loser’s Bracket Finals, with the winner to take on OG for the Manila Major title.
The last day of the Manila Major will be on June 12, 2016, with the first match to start on 10:00 AM PHT (Philippine Time) featuring the Loser’s Bracket Finals, and the Grand Finals to be live on 3:00 PM PHT. A live TV Coverage of the Grand Finals match will be provided by TV5 and AksyonTV for Philippine Televisions, and will start at the same time as the Grand Finals in SM Mall of Asia Arena.
Article header image credit to reddit user jerieljan (https://www.reddit.com/user/jerieljan)