Vici Gaming claim their second Major of the season after beating Team Liquid at the EPICENTER Major 2019 Dota Pro Circuit event which took place in Moscow last week. Vici end the season as one of the most dominant teams in the world after an incredible run at this year’s event. Their victory did not come easy – TL made the Chinese team work for their win – Vici had to fight their way through a five-game slugfest against TL who, in the end, put up one of their best performances of the season in terms of mechanical skill and sheer aggression.
The EPICENTER Major 2019 Dota Pro Circuit event lasted for a total of 9 days and with it’s conclusion comes the official ending of the 2018-19 Dota Pro Circuit. Both Vici and Team Liquid showed off what was arguably the best skills and talent throughout the event, taking center stage and treating fans to a back-and-forth series that could have swung either way until the last action of the Grand Finale. In the end Vici needed to survive a brutal five-game series against TL bringing them the trophy and the first prize of $350,000 and 4,950 DPC points for their victory. This year’s campaign saw a marked improvement for Vici Gaming who last year had to settle for second place on multiple occasions. Teal Liquid found themselves finishing runners-up for the second time this season, taking home a respectable second prize of $170,000 and 3000 DPC points.
Team Liquid’s hard carry, Amer “Mircale” Al-Barkawi was awarded the prestigious MVP award for the EPICENTER Major 2019 event for his outstanding play, despite not being able to help TL make it over the line in the Grand Finale. After a dominating display against second-ranked Virtus.Pro in the lower bracket finals, TL carried their momentum over into the Grand Finale against Vici. They opened up the finals series with a resounding 43-minute win, highlighted by Miracle setting multiple tournament records along the way.
Despite TL’s momentum, Vici Gaming remained resilient, the champions of the CORSAIR DreamLeague Season 11 managing to secure victories in both games 2 and 3. Game 4 was a much closer affair, the hour-long game seeing Vici Gaming pick up a steady lead. TL stuck to their gameplan however, showed excellent composure and with a little bit of luck and skill (proving kills aren’t the focal point of a strategy along the way), were able to make a comeback for the win late in the game, extending the series and tying the score at 2 – 2.
In game 5 Vici pulled out all the stops, the DOTA community couldn’t have asked for a better finish to the last major of the DPC season. After a near-perfect draft the Chinese team held a 13k lead after only 23 minutes, and despite efforts to counter-attack from TL, Vici secured their ultimate victory in rather an anti-climactic way, 35 – 10, walking away with the big prize and championship victory. Vici deserved their win after displaying flawless play, proving they are not only the best team in China right now, but certainly among the best in the world (now ranked 3rd in the DPC rankings below only Team Secret and Virtus.Pro).
Both teams will now find themselves as top seeds for the International 2019 which is taking place in Shanghai in August of this year. The record setting event’s prize-pool has already surpassed $25,000,000 and is $500,000 away from being the biggest prize pool in Esports history.
For full coverage of this year’s Grand Finale check out this link. Or, for more Esports related news check out this recap of this year’s League of Legends Rift Rivals 2019 event, also featuring Team Liquid in which Europe were able to out-muscle their North American counterparts.