Team Secret Dominates Natus Vincere in Epicenter CIS-Europe Qualifier
In a highly anticipated match, Team Secret emerged as the victor against fan-favorites Natus Vincere in the finals of the CIS-Europe qualifier for Epicenter LAN.
The match, originally scheduled for May 14, was postponed just before it was supposed to start. This led to speculation of regional favoritism on the part of Epicenter, which is based in Russia. Na`Vi played in the grand finals of the qualifiers for DOTA Summit on May 14, defeating Team Empire 3-0. It is widely believed that Na`Vi requested the rescheduling to avoid playing two grand finals in a single day.
However, the rescheduling did not change the outcome. Throughout the 60-minute series, Na`Vi had little chance against the dominant Team Secret squad.
In game one, Team Secret quickly built an eight-kill lead before Na`Vi scored their first kill. Although Na`Vi attempted to recover in the mid game, one bad team fight sealed their fate, with MidOne’s Queen of Pain leading the charge for Team Secret. Game two was not much different, with Team Secret gaining an early advantage from a zero-minute rune fight. By 25 minutes, after a disastrous teamfight near the Roshan pit, Na`Vi admitted defeat, giving the series win and the Epicenter LAN invite to Team Secret.
Team Secret will now join nine other teams, including long-time rivals Evil Geniuses, in Moscow for the Epicenter LAN tournament from June 9 to 11, where they will compete for a $500,000 prize pool.
Both teams’ drafts and playstyles in the finals would not have been out of place in patch 7.05, which was replaced by gameplay update 7.06 earlier this week. Team Secret picked nearly identical lineups in both games, featuring Queen of Pain, Troll Warlord, Clockwerk, and Jakiro. Na`Vi relied on their traditional comfort picks, such as Dark Seer and Lina, in both games.
Despite the loss, Na`Vi fans still have a chance to see their team at the Epicenter LAN through a “redemption vote” in which fans can vote for the final team to receive an invite. Given the tournament’s strong fan base in the CIS region, it is very likely that Na`Vi will secure a spot at the event.
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