A Natus Vincere throw ensures Alliance move on at the WePlay! Pushka League
Alliance and Natus Vincere kicked off the day at the WePlay! Pushka League with both teams fighting for their tournament lives in what is still referred to as ‘El Clasico’ in the Dota 2 community.
Ever since The International 2013, one matchup has always been focused on as being one of the best; Alliance versus Na’Vi, but times and teams have changed and now only Gustav ‘s4’ Magnusson’s return to the Alliance squad serves as a reminder of that series. However, it did not mean that the two teams were any less hungry for victory and with elimination looming for the losing squad in the lower bracket, there was everything to play for.
Na’Vi decided to try show off something different in the first game of the series, drafting the first Chaos Knight of the tournament in hopes of surprising Alliance with the pick and take a win. While the game was fairly even for the most part, Alliance were constantly creeping ahead but the CIS squad begun to mount a rather fantastic comeback – up until Idan ‘MagicaL’ Vardanian was caught while his team were attempting to claim a Roshan kill. This set of a chain reaction which quickly led to Alliance’s first victory.
Game two was far better for Na’Vi as they controlled the map and with MagicaL’s Medusa, the team seemed completely set to tie the series. Alliance were constantly on the back foot and never able to take great fights, but once again, a mistake from MagicaL would cost Na’Vi the game. Half an hour had passed when Nikolay ‘Nikobaby’ Nikolov would pick up the slain Medusa’s Divine Rapier and a few moments later the GG calls came out from Na’Vi.
With that Natus Vincere exit the WePlay! Pushka League while Alliance will move on in the lower bracket.
Ninjas in Pyjamas sent packing from the WePlay! Pushka League
After Natus Vincere were eliminated from the WePlay! Pushka League, one more team would meet their demise as Ninjas in Pyjamas and Virtus.pro fought for their tournament lives.
So far in the WePlay! Pushka League playoff stage, we have witnessed nothing but two-game series as no matchup has gone the full three games – but there was a chance that Virtus.pro and Ninjas in Pyjamas could change that. Both teams seemed to be quickly finding their form this year but unfortunately for one, their tournament would end today.
Going into the first game of the series, we would see the NiP Meepo get picked, while the team also banned the Centuar from Roman ‘Resolut1on’ Fominok – something that had become a favoured pick from VP in recent times. The game was even for quite some time – with NiP being the first to gain a noticeable lead in the opening half hour. However, as the game progressed, VP managed to fight back and take the game.
There was no stopping VP after this as the next game was a 22-minute stomp, with NiP never given the chance to obtain more than five kills. VP were methodical in their victory and with that would move forward in the event – while NiP would be eliminated in fifth/sixth place.
Team Secret advance to WePlay! Pushka League finals undefeated
Team Secret would have had a perfect run so far at WePlay! Pushka League if it wouldn’t be for Team Liquid to steal a series from them in the group stages. Revenge was taken today in the upper bracket semifinals as Liquid were executed 2-0 despite having a strong start in both games.
Clement “Puppey” Ivanov came prepared with two Bounty Hunter drafts to mess up Team Liquid’s gameplay by making sure that their habit of jungle stacking and accelerated farm won’t happen. He put BH in the trusty hands of Ludwig “zai” Wåhlberg and Team Secret patiently waited to hit the right timing for the lethal attack. Bounty Hunter was complimented in game one by Ember Spirit, who was able to chase and keep the tracked target in place until it would eventually go down. However, the game started with three early deaths on Bounty and many pickoffs on Puppey’s Bane, which made Liquid feel confident that the Bane would be an easy target at any given point, but they got taken by surprise at the 17-minute mark by a Ghost Scepter reveal from Puppey and the failed initiation marked Liquid’s downfall. As the full Liquid line-up was relying on right click damage, both Secret’s supports went for the Ghost Scepter and turned the game in their favour.
Liquid seemed to have learned their lesson from game one and adjusted their draft for the next battle with a mid lane Queen of Pain, but the result was almost identical. Zai started with 3 deaths by the 10-minute mark, and even though Liquid managed to find pickoffs on all Secret’s cores, Secrets’ Death Prophet and Dragon Knight in the early stage, the tide turned once Michał “Nisha” Jankowski stooped the madness with a Heaven’s Halberd purchased 20 minutes into the game.
Secret’s itemization emphasized on plus armor and HP regeneration allowed them to fight into Liquid’s Bristtleback and corner their adversaries into their base to take a clean 2-0 victory that secures them a top three finish at WePlay! Pushka League.
Team Liquid will have a shot at bouncing back via lower bracket rounds. They will resume the games today, May 11 against Alliance, while Team Secret will play versus VP.Prodigy for a spot into the grand finals.