After six days of intense Dota action, the Grand Final of the ONE Esports Dota 2 Singapore World Pro Invitational came down to two teams riding hot streaks. From the Upper Bracket, Evil Geniuses entered the game with a 13-1 record, following 2-0 sweeps over Team Secret and Gambit in the Upper Bracket semifinal and final respectively.
Their opponents, Vici Gaming, had a slow start to the tournament and almost didn’t make it out of the Group Stage, but after close 2-1 wins over TNC Predator and Team Secret in the first two rounds of the Lower Bracket, they found their groove, sweeping Alliance and Gambit in the Lower Bracket semifinal and final.
In the end, Vici Gaming’s momentum proved unstoppable as they kept their streak alive with a dominant 3-0 sweep over EG in the Grand Final.
Here is how it all played out:
VG opened the finals with a midgame-centric, tanky tri-core of a safelane Magnus for Zhang “Eurus” Chengjun, Viper for Ori, and Underlord for Zhou “Yang” Haiyang.
Meanwhile, EG looked to take it late with Artour “Arteezy” Babaev on Phantom Lancer, Abed Azel “Abed” Yusop on a mid Quas-Exort Invoker, Roman “RAMZES666” Kushnarev on Beastmaster, and Andreas “Cr1t-” Nielsen on Earth Spirit to guide the team through the midgame.
Despite VG arguably having the stronger laning composition, EG came out of the laning phase with a significant 2k lead and a 6-0 kill advantage thanks to Cr1t’s highly-effective rotations.
VG continued to make moves around the map and caught Ramzes’ Beastmaster at the top lane. Abed attempted to save his offlaner but this just made VG go for him instead.
With VG inside their base taking down multiple buildings, EG decided to use Abed’s buyback but Arteezy was already caught out by Xiong “Pyw” Jiaoyang’s Static Storm ultimate.
EG eventually went all-in by using Arteezy and Ramzes’ buybacks in an attempt to take down VG’s heroes. However, VG were able to keep all five of their heroes alive and eventually EG had to retreat.
VG eventually claimed all of EG’s sets of Barracks and claimed the Mega Creep advantage. A few moments later, EG tried to contest VG at the Roshan Pit. But, Eurus on the Magnus was able to Skewer EG’s heroes straight into Pyw’s Static Storm and Kinetic Field, ending game one.
In game two, VG tried to shut down Artour “Arteezy” Babaev’s hero pool by banning the Naga Siren, Phantom Lancer, and Blood Seeker. At the same time, they decided to pick up the Viper for Ori, Brewmaster for Yang, and Drow Ranger for Eurus.
In response, Evil Geniuses went with the Razor for Abed, Omniknight for Ramzes, Gyrocopter for Arteezy, and Disruptor for Cr1t-.
EG dominated the laning stage to start game two. Abed outperformed Ori at the middle lane, despite being up against a Viper. Yang also had a terrible start with Cr1t-‘s Disruptor constantly applying pressure on the Dire safe lane.
VG were able to get themselves back into the game after a smoke gank on Abed’s Razor at the top lane. Instead of retreating, EG committed to a disastrous fight without their middle laner and lost three more heroes in the process.
The mid game advantage went back and forth as EG tried to take control of the Dire base, but were unable to claim any of the tier-three Towers or Barracks.
VG eventually got upper hand after a huge team fight saw three members of EG go down.
VG immediately seized the advantage and ran straight down the middle lane to take down EG’s tier-three Tower. Cr1t- was able to catch three VG heroes in his static storm, but Pyw was able to steal Ramzes’ Guardian Angel to keep his teammates safe, forcing EG to call GG on game two.
With their backs against the wall, EG decided to go for Faceless Void and Enigma as their core heroes. VG also let EG have Tiny for Cr1t-, a hero he has excelled at throughout the competition.
VG responded with a Kunkka, Omniknight, and Slark as their cores. They also picked up the Elder Titan for Ding “Dy” Cong.
Both teams tried to set the pace of the game with their team fight ultimates. Once again, the early game shifted towards EG’s side after VG’s heroes decided to use the Static Storm ultimate on Cr1t-. But both Arteezy and Ramzes were able to jump into the team fight and land a Chronosphere and Black Hole to win the crucial team fight.
VG were able to take back control of the game after EG chased after them in the middle lane. With EG’s big team fight ultimates on cooldown, VG turned around and took down four Dire heroes.
A few minutes later, EG were able to regain control when Arteezy landed a two-man Chronosphere followed up by Ramzes Black Hole, taking down three from VG.
EG tried to extend their lead by going for a smoke gank which lead to a quick pickoff on Yang’s Omniknight. However, instead of backing off, EG hung around the middle lane too long and ended up getting caught by VG’s counterattack.
Taking the momentum, VG decided to dive straight into EG’s lineup even when their opponents had Chronosphere and Black Hole up. VG clearly knew that once EG’s ultimates were used, they had no way to win the team fight so Eurus’ immediately decided to use his buyback and chase down and reengage the Dire heroes.
VG only had an 8,000 gold lead against EG, but they knew their opponents had no chance to defend their base with their ultimates on cooldown. Eurus even dove into the Dire Fountain to chase down Ramzes’ Enigma. With nothing left to defend with, EG were forced to call GG.
With the win, VG walked away with US$200,000 and the first-ever ONE Esports Dota 2 Singapore World Pro Invitational title belt.
Evil Geniuses finished as the runners-up and take home US$100,000 for their efforts.