ESL One Katowice: Virtus.pro raises the trophy

Building teamwork with their new roster doesn't seem to be an issue with Virtus.pro. They won a major again and reminded the world they are the top Dota 2 team today.


(Image Credit: Dota 2 The International)

Virtus.pro beat Vici Gaming 3-1 in the grand finals of ESL One Katowice, proving that bringing in RodjER from Natus Vincere was not a bad move. The CIS team is now far ahead of everybody else in the Dota Pro Circuit with 4947 Qualifying Points.

Vici Gaming became the dark horse of the event after beating Team Liquid in the semifinals, but Virtus.pro knew were prepared to deal with the Chinese team. In all four games of the grand finals, Virtus.pro picked Gyrocopter and banned Naga Siren, the latter being the hero that Vici Gaming spammed against Team Liquid.

Without the Song of the Siren, Vici Gaming showed a lack of confidence playing with different strats. In Game 1 they picked heavy teamfight heroes with high cooldowns and they lost, but they still used the same strat for Game 2, only to lose again.

In Game 3 we saw them switch to the Terrorblade strat. They won that game, but it was apparent that they wanted to do the same thing again in Game 4. Virtus.pro was ready for it and they responded with a strong dual offlane comprising Tiny and Chen.

A best-of-3 was done to determine third and fourth place before the grand finals. Team Liquid secured the bronze from Fnatic with a 2-1 score.

Expecting to see Fnatic in The International 2018

Virtus.pro, Vici Gaming and Team Liquid have superb positions in the Dota Pro Circuit, but Fnatic is only ranked number ten. The schedule shows six majors and five minors remaining, which means there still is a lot of opportunity for Fnatic and other teams not yet in the top eight to catch up and secure direct invites for The International 2018.

With the addition of Universe in the team, Fnatic might do it. They looked stronger than before in Katowice; they beat Team Secret 2-1 in the group stage, although arguably due to amazing luck.

Fnatic won Game 1 with, again, Naga Siren. Team Secret responded by banning the hero in both Game 2 and Game 3. Fnatic lost Game 2. They almost lost Game 3 as well, but denied Team Secret from their victory by using Underlord’s Dark Rift to teleport to Team Secret’s throne during a fight in front of Fnatic’s base, a move that EternalEnvy later admitted to be unplanned and was discovered due to him dying early in the fight.

Did Fnatic look better than Team Secret? Probably not, but still looking good.

A call for a balancing update

With The Bucharest Major about to be held next week, it is vital for the upcoming patch later this week to address the heroes balancing. Several heroes are already drafted too often, and with the newly popular Terrorblade with 5 seconds cooldown Sunder, similar heroes are expected to be drafted in the next event unless the heroes are re-balanced.

Do you think Virtus.pro and Fnatic are stronger now with their new members? What do you expect to see in the upcoming patch? Let us know in the comments below!

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