MDL Disneyland® Paris Major kicked off today, May 4th. The teams seeded in Group A and Group B played their opening series in Paris and two squads have already secured themselves a spot into the upper bracket playoffs.
Group A: A treat for the fans
Virtus.pro and Team Liquid got seeded together in Group A and although they weren’t pitted against each other from the get go, a possible match-up between these two was what everyone anticipated.
VP had to deal first with Beastcoast (former Team Team), who came determined to steal some games from the DPC ranking leaders with Drow Ranger. Jacky “EternaLEnVy” Mao stood by his idea of playing Drow Ranger for three games in a row and he Beastcoast have actually managed to win game two of the series, which triggered VP to use in the decisive game a very similar draft with the previous match. The winning change on the VP side was a Disruptor for their captain.
Alexei “Solo” Berezin was in great shape today and prepared for Team Liquid. The TI7 Champions had a marvelous first series against Keen Gaming. Ivan “MinD_ContRoL” Ivanov warmed up on Puck against the Chinese team only to face VP and leave everyone speechless with his outstanding plays on the hero. Liquid ran a Lifestealer mid lane with the Puck infest bomb option. They had two strong AoE silences and a lot of slows to play against Virtus.pro’s Morphling and core Phoenix. The first game of the series was an absolute treat which we highly recommend everyone to watch if you missed it. Both teams played with an ultimate late-game scenario in mind and although VP couldn’t execute their Phoenix egg combo through the first 30 to 40 minutes, and got cornered on their side of the map, once they got into the very late game with their Morph, the tide turned.
Game two brought a last pick Storm Spirit for Virtus. pro, who had to play against an Arc Warden and even though most of the fans would expect the big plays to come from the cores, the spotlight was on Solo’s Rubick who took the full advantage of the Drow aura inside his team and went for a right click item build. Crystalys and BkB were his two big items to help VP finish the day with an upper bracket slot in the MDL Disney® Major.
Group B: Hooked on Secret
In group B, Team Secret made everything look like a walk in the park. They started the day with a Pudge game versus Team Empire and gave the hero to Ludwig “zai” Wåhlberg in the offlane, while their other two cores were Troll Warlord and Monkey King. Empire found just eight kills through the entire game as Zai set up a fast paced tempo with his constant rotations and always successful hooks. Game two was somewhat more contested with the CIS team being able to apply early pressure with a mid-lane Phantom Assassin and a Leshrac to force the early objectives. But, despite their decent lead in kills, Empire weren’t really in the driver seat. Secret’s Michał “Nisha” Jankowski on Anti-Mage was impossible to bring down and eventually took over the game to bring a 2-0 clean victory for his team.
Perhaps the surprise of group B were Chaos Esports Club who took down the recent OGA Dota PIT Minor Champions, Ninjas in Pyjamas in a reverse sweep. NiP started with a great Razor game that was decided in only 23 minutes, but got ran over in game two by a signature carry Nature’s Prophet of William “hFn” Medeiros. Game three lasted an hour and was a continuous back and forth battle with an interesting twist brought to the table by NiP. Their mid lane choice was Lone Druid played by Neta “33” Shapira while Adrian “Fata” Trinks was sent offlane on Sand King. Both teams had good ways of kiting each other’s carries and bait the BkB’s, Chaos fighting with Ursa and Templar Assassin vesrus NiP’s Troll Warlord and a Radiance Spirit Bear. The faith of the game revolved around Roshan timers and the Aegis advantage and Chaos prevailed and joined Team Secret in group B’s winner’s series. This is where their momentum was brutally cut short with two fast and dominant games from the uncontested leaders in the European region. It took Team Secret about one hour to secure themselves a spot into the playoffs.
Day 1 continues with the teams from Group C and D entering the battle so, stay tuned!
headline picture by: DreamHack