One of China’s best midlaners might be done with the competitive Dota 2 scene after being eliminated from The International 11 playoffs in unfortunate circumstances.

Royal Never Give Up’s Lu “Somnus” Yao released a cryptic message on his personal Weibo, ending the post with a mic-dropping “Somnus out.”

“My youth is destined to have regrets,” Somnus wrote, as translated by ONE Esports. “Thank you, everybody, for your concern and support. My youth is over.”

Is RNG’s Somnus retiring from pro Dota 2?

Many fans are treating Somnus’ cryptic message as a retirement note. Under Somnus’ post, several replies include an outpouring of support for the midlaner and calls for him to stay for another year.

The 26-year-old was eliminated today from the TI11 main event after a 107-minute, best-of-one, slugfest against Entity. This was RNG’s ninth straight loss of the tournament, during which the midlaner was hospitalized due to COVID-19 — and three more of his teammates subsequently tested positive.

This led to four RNG members playing the elimination match while self-quarantined, with Yap “xNova” Jian Wei the only one playing from the stage.

RNG xNova alone at TI11 main stage
Credit: Screenshot from Valve’s TI11 broadcast

RNG had begun the TI11 group stage in blazing form, starting 9-1 and claiming the top spot in Group A. The COVID crisis within the team undoubtedly contributed to the team’s slide, however, losing every game thereafter.

Hopefully, for Somnus and his fans, the 26-year-old will come back for another round — though the decision is ultimately his.

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