Liquid on track for second TI win
Most of the time Evil Geniuses were the best team in Group A. That changed on Day Three when Team Liquid beat the North American team and overtook them in the table. Today, the reigning champions secured first place by beating VGJ.Thunder without any big problems.
Kuro S. 'KuroKy' Takhasomi and his teammates are the first TI team to ever win the Group Stage twice in a row. We'll see if they have another shot at the Aegis. A threat to their second title could be Forward Gaming, as the North Americans secured first place in Group B. Virtus.pro surprisingly lost against Vici Gaming on Day Four.
Two teams fly home
While 16 teams have a reason to celebrate the break day before the Main Stage starts, two teams must plan their travel home. The first team to go home was paiN Gaming*. They faced Team Serenity in the final game, with both teams needing to win.
Although paiN played some impressive Dota 2 on Day Three, it was not enough for them to stay alive in the tournament - Serenity won 2-0 and paiN Gaming will now fly home.
In a Group A Tiebreaker, Winstrike faced Invictus Gaming to determine who would have to go home.
The new Meta is on point - almost every hero has been picked so far
paiN Gaming* didn't look good in the first game against Team Serenity, but the Brazilians can proudly say that they were part of a new The International record.
Pain's Razor pick brings the total to 109 heroes picked so far in 137 drafts at #TI8, the most ever at a pro #Dota2 event and 2 ahead of the 107 heroes in 191 drafts at The International 2017. I'd now estimate at worst even odds that ALL 115 heroes in CM will be picked.— Nahaz (@NahazDota) 18. August 2018
109 heroes picked by the end of the Group Stage - this is a TI record. No other Dota 2 event has ever had such a number of heroes used, with only six missing. We are still waiting for Chaos Knight, Dark Seer, Dazzle, Slardar, Slark and Techies.
The fastest Roshan of all time
However, this is not the only record set in the final round of games on Day Four of the Group Stage. Newbee picked Wraith King and Ursa in their first game against Team Secret - the perfect combination to defeat Roshan early - but nobody expected that it would be so early.
Support player Hu 'Kaka' Liangzhi is now the record holder for fastest Roshan kill in TI history. This means Jonathan 'Loda' Berg will vanish from the record list. At TI6 he killed Roshan 38 seconds into a game. Many people thought it would be a record for eternity, but KAKA and Damien 'kpii' Chok proved them wrong. However, this game didn't end as fast as it started to get interesting.
Although Newbee had a strong early lead due to the Rosh record, Secret were able to keep up with their opponents - after 79 minutes and nine seconds Newbee finally made it work and won the first game.
What a perfect finish to the Group Stage! On Monday the Main Stage starts, and we'll finally see the teams fighting in the Rogers Arena in Vancouver.
What was your highlight moment of the Group Stage?
Photo credit: Valve