Defending champions Tundra Esports are OUT of The International 2023
25 October 2023
As we speak, some of the year’s most anticipated Dota 2 action is taking place with The International 2023 being played in the city of Seattle, in the United States. Basically, this means that from about October 12 to October 29, the international esports news will be largely dominated by Dota 2 and the development at The International, and with good reason, because the event is serving up major battles and shocks once again this year. Probably the biggest surprise of all so far has been the recent elimination of defending champions Tundra Esports by Entity Esports in the lower bracket play-offs of The International 2023.
Early exit for the favorites
After their dominant road to Dota 2 glory at The International 2022, Tundra Esports were the big favorites to win the event again this year. Not a crazy prediction, when you think that the London-based organization defeated Team Secret 3-0 in the Grand Final after not losing a single series in the entire tournament’s Main Event. Fate had something else in mind, it seems though, because the favorites ended up being eliminated in the Round 1 of the Lower Bracket Play-offs against Indian organization Entity.
A shock elimination did not seem to be on the cards at the very start of the battle between Tundra and Entity. The English organization could count on a substantial gold lead and it looked like they were going to dominate the encounter. Entity was sharp though, and they found openings in Tundra’s strategies pretty quickly. The unplanned isolation of Tundra’s Leon “Nine” Kirilin in the middle lane in particular proved to be a turning point for the Indians. So much, in fact, that they managed to win the first game.
Losing the first game obviously shocked Tundra, who seemed to be out of ideas for the second game. Entity, on the other hand, smelled blood and prepared perfectly for what turned out to be the final game of the battle. To the surprise of Tundra and the entire Dota 2 community, they managed to strike at exactly the right moments while maintaining a disciplined tower defense, which gave them the victory over the absolute favorites.
Short-lived success for Entity
Of course, the victory over Tundra Esports was a major achievement for Entity, but they still had some way to go until the coveted final. The next obstacle was Russian-Armenian esports organization Virtus Pro, in Round 2 of the Lower Bracket Play-offs. In other words, another formidable opponent for Entity and unfortunately, it turned out to be their final opponent at The International 2023.
The Yerevan-based organization was kicked out of the Upper Bracket Quarterfinals and therefore entered Round 1 of the Lower Bracket Play-offs. They had relatively few problems with their first opponent in the Lower Bracket as Entity was beaten 2-0. While game 1 was close and took just over an hour to be decided, Virtus made quick work of their qualification for the Lower Bracket Round 2 Play-offs in the second game by beating Entity in just under half an hour.