posted by Brasozial,
The last chance to qualify for TI directly
Eight teams are qualified for The International 2019 and all of them will compete at the upcoming EPICENTER Major. Four more slots will be filled by the end of the tournament on June 30. This means eight more teams at the Major have the chance to make it to TI directly through points.
OG and TNC Predator are in the most comfortable positions right now. Both are currently in the top 12 and need some 1000 points to qualify for the event. However, even if they get kicked out early they still have high chances of qualifying for TI9. It will be a tough fight for all teams competing: one good placement could avoid the difficult road through the TI qualifiers.
Liquid and their new carry
Team Liquid benched Lasse 'Matumbaman' Urpalainen a week ago and announced that they'll announce a new carry before the next Major starts. Rumours and a stream leak point to Omar 'w33haa' Aliwi. The Romanian mid laner is without a team right now and could be one of the best free agent choices.
All eyes will be on the new carry whether he's a well-known star or a newcomer, because he'll be following in the footsteps of a legend. Matu was part of a legendary squad that set many records. Although Liquid is swapping a player, fans and experts will still predict them to make it top four, top six of TI and the EPICENTER. In Moscow they'll have to prove if they're still worth that hype and hope.
Is OG in shape right before TI9?
OG have been improving every week since Anathan 'ana' Pham rejoined the roster earlier this spring. Their best result was at MDL Disneyland Paris Major when they finished in 5-6th. In the end they lost to Team Liquid in a close series with 1-2.
Afterwards at ESL One Birmingham 2019 everybody expected them to do even better, but they faced Team Secret in round one of the playoffs and lost.
So far OG isn't qualified for the upcoming TI, but they've earned already 948 DPC points which gives them some leverage in the fight for a slot. However, OG is not just aiming for a TI invite. They're the reigning TI champions. Everybody wants to see them competing in Shanghai and see if they could be the first team to win two consecutive TIs. In Moscow, they could show how close they're to the top teams Team Secret, Evil Geniuses or Virtus.pro.
Can VP close in with Secret?
Virtus.pro was the best team of last season. They dominated the Dota 2 Pro Circuit, but disappointed at The International 2018. They started perfectly into this season by winning the first Major, The Kuala Lumpur Major. However, afterwards they didn't win any DPC tournament and are on second place in the ranking.
Secret is the only team that won more than one Major this season. Virtus.pro isn't desperately aiming for the first place, but they'll try to do anything to close in with Secret. On top of that, they'll have the home crowd advantage. The fans at EPICENTER will hope to see their home team lift the trophy.
Can Virtus.pro surpass Secret or are Puppey and co. too strong?
Photo credit: ESL - Helena Kristiansson