3-peat in SEA: BOOM ID secures its third straight Minor appearance as the squad claims 1st place in the OGA Dota PIT Minor 2019 Southeast Asia Qualifier
The field of teams for the OGA Dota PIT Minor 2019 is very nearly complete now, as Southeast Asia becomes the fifth of the six Dota 2 regions to conclude its qualifier and determine its representative on the Pro Circuit stage. After two days of matches, just one squad of the original eight participants remains standings, with BOOM ID claiming the 1st place position in the event and the lone Southeast Asian slot at the Minor itself with a perfect 6-0 record against its regional rivals. With its victory in this qualifier, BOOM ID secures both its third straight Minor appearance of the 2018-2019 campaign, and its third Pro Circuit appearance in total as an organization. With the action from this regional qualifier officially at and end, the time has come to take a look at how of the teams in the field performed in this event and how they stacked up compared to their pre-qualifier projections.
1st (Qualified for OGA Dota PIT Minor 2019)
BOOM ID has been a rising force within the Southeast Asian region so far this season, and with Fnatic and Mineski heading for the Major and therefore out of the field for this event, the Indonesian squad was looked at as a leading contender to claim the Southeast Asian spot in Split. For its part, BOOM ID manged to more than live up to those expectations, as the squad posted a perfect 6-0 record to claim a 1st place finish against its regional rivals and earn another trip to the Pro Circuit stage. The team played with an impressive level of strength and confidence, led by its Carry/Mid duo of Dreamocel and Mikoto who combined to average an incredible 18 kills and 19 assists on just 3.27 deaths per game. The team’s two previous appearances on the Pro Circuit stage have not gone particularly well for BOOM ID, but with another opportunity to put its strength on display on the international level, the squad will be hoping to reverse that trend as it heads to Split, Croatia for its third Minor appearance of the season.
After finishing at the bottom of the standings in the Major qualifier, WarriorsGaming.Unity did not come into this event with the highest of expectations. However, the experience and skill of its roster still gave the team some hope for success as it faced off against its regional rivals once again. Between that experience and the addition of new Midlaner Yowe to the lineup, WarriorsGaming.Unity put on an incredible performance in this qualifier, taking down both Tigers and TNC Predator in back to back 2-0 sweeps before finally falling 0-2 to BOOM ID in the Finals. The teams core trio of Nikobaby, Yowe, and Ohaiyo put together some impressive numbers in the team’s qualifier run, averaging 20.84 kills and 36 assists on just 9.33 deaths per game to lead the squad to its 4-2 overall record. The team may have missed the mark to reach the Pro Circuit stage this time around, but if WarriorsGaming.Unity can continue to play at level that we saw in this qualifier, then the team has the potential to become a much more formidable force within the Southeast Asian region over the final months of the season.
TNC Predator came into this regional qualifier as a clear favorite to claim the Southeast Asian slot at the OGA Dota PIT Minor 2019. With 2 of its main rivals in Fnatic and Mineski removed from the field, the threats to the team’s chances of making it to the Pro Circuit stage were drastically reduced. Unfortunately, the team couldn’t quite capitalize on that opportunity, as TNC Predator posted a 2-2 overall record to finish in the 3rd-4th place position in this qualifier. After putting together a solid showing in its first series against Geek Fam, the squad found itself struggling in the Semifinals against WarriorsGaming.Unity, as the team fell 0-2 in that series to end its qualifier run. The squad seemed to have serious issues in the late-game stages of both matches, as TNC Predator blew a pair of net worth leads to lead to its defeat in the series. The team didn’t play particularly poorly, with its Carry/Mid duo of Armel and Gabbit combining to average 14.50 kills and 16.50 assists on just 6 deaths per game. However, the squad’s inability to close out matches and control the late-game stage cost it significantly, and could present a potential issue for the squad moving forward. Hopefully, the team can find a way to bounce back from this somewhat disappointing performance and regroup in time to put together a stronger run in the final round of Pro Circuit qualifiers in May.
After a somewhat surprisingly Top 4 performance in the recent Major qualifier, EVOS Esports came into this event as a serious contender for the lone Southeast Asian spot at the Minor. With Fnatic and Mineski out of the field, EVOS Esports appeared to be in a prime position to challenge the likes of BOOM ID and TNC Predator as it sought to make its first appearance on the Pro Circuit stage. Unfortunately, the squad didn’t quite manage to reach that goal, finishing in the 3rd-4th place position overall with a 2-2 record in this qualifier. The team defeated TaskUs Titans 2-0 in the Quarterfinals with relative ease, but found itself on the wrong end of a one sided match up in the Semifinals as it was taken down 0-2 by BOOM ID. Between this showing and its run at the Major qualifier, it is clear that EVOS Esports has some serious potential within the Southeast Asian region. The squad may not be an immediate threat to usurp a position as a leading squad in the region, but the Indonesian team is certainly looking like a team on the rise this season and could eventually find itself in that position if it continues to play at this level moving forward.
Following a solid showing in the Major qualifier, Neon Esports came into this event hoping to build upon that performance and potentially challenge some of the favorites in this field for a spot on the Pro Circuit stage. Unfortunately, the team proved unable to make that happen, as Neon Esports lost its sole series of the event with a 0-2 defeat at the hands of BOOM ID. While the team did end up losing the series, it certainly didn’t go down without a fight, with the 2 game series lasting over 87 minutes of game time as Neon Esports managed to delay its losses for some time. Those efforts were admirable, but the fact that the team came away from this qualifier with no wins will stills surely be seen as a disappointment for it. Between its performance both in the Major qualifier and in this event, there is a possibility that we see Neon Esports in the final round of Pro Circuit qualifiers in May. However, the squad will likely need to put together a solid string of results within its home region between now and then in order to make that kinds of scenario a reality.
Tigers came into this event with a slight change to its roster compared to its Major qualifier run, as 458 was replaced by Raven. Unfortunately, the addition of Raven did not prove to be enough to lead Tigers to success, as the squad was dropped in its first and only series of the qualifier with a 0-2 loss to WarriorsGaming.Unity. Tigers did not manage to put together a very impressive performance, as the tam was out killed 2-158 over the course of the series, and trailed in terms of net worth for all but a handful of minutes scattered about in Game 1. Only Raven managed to to hit double digit kills across the entire series, with the next highest kill count for the team being Velo with just 5. It seems clear at this stage that this new Tigers lineup still hasn’t quite been able to figure itself out just yet, and with the Pro Circuit already on the back end of the 2018-2019 season, the squad is rapidly running out of time to make some sort of last minute push before the start of the TI9 Qualifiers.
Considering the fact that Geek Fam had been inactive over the first few months of the season, and hadn’t been a particularly strong power in the Southeast Asian region since its return, the expectations were fairly low for this squad coming into the event. An initial match up against one of the region’s most powerful squads in TNC Predator certainly didn’t help either, as Geek Fam found itself outclassed in a 0-2 defeat. To the squad’s credit, it was leading for most of Game 2 against TNC Predator, before allowing a massive surge in the mid and late-game stages that ended up costing it the match. Perhaps the squad can regroup in the future and potentially make a run for the final round of Pro Circuit qualifier in May, but considering its middling performance in this event, that scenario seems pretty unlikely as of now.
As a relatively unheralded squad within the Southeast Asian region, TaskUs Titans did not come into this Minor qualifier with all that much in the way of expectations. Unfortunately, the team proved unable to put together a very impressive performance against its regional rivals, as the squad lost its lone series of the event with a 0-2 defeat at the hands of EVOS Esports. Considering the fact that the team was looked at as one of the weakest teams in the field, this result doesn’t come as much of a surprise, though the team will probably still be disappointed with its early exit from the qualifier. With only one round of Pro Circuit qualifiers remaining this season, it seems unlikely that we see TaskUs Titans in this position again, as the team’s experience will likely be limited to smaller regional tournaments over the final few months of the 2018-2019 campaign.