The regional qualifiers for Dota 2's The International 11 (TI11) continue to surprise everyone, as Peruvian team Hokori won the South American Qualifier by going undefeated on the final day of the tournament on Thursday (8 September).
Hokori received a default win over Tempest in the lower bracket finals due to internet issues, then proceeded to sweep Infamous 3-0 in the grand finals.
As a result, Hokori are the third team from South America headed to the Group Stage of TI11, this year's iteration of Dota 2's annual world championship tournament, which will be hosted in Singapore this October.
Infamous and Tempest will also be heading to Singapore, but they will have to go through the gruelling gauntlet that is the Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) along with the second and third-placed team from the other regional qualifiers.
Hokori's victory came as quite a shock, as they went down to the lower bracket early in the qualifier after losing 0-2 against Tempest.
Hokori then swept No Runes and Mad Kings to earn their rematch against Tempest, which unfortunately didn't happen as Tempest received a default loss due to internet issues.
Meanwhile, Infamous had an impressive run in the upper bracket, winning all three of their matches without dropping a single map.
It wasn't surprising, as Infamous had always placed third behind Thunder Awaken and Beastcoast during the regional leagues this Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) season, making them the favourites to win the regional qualifiers.
Infamous entered grand finals with heavy disadvantage
Before a Dota 2 pro game starts, a coin toss is used to determine which team has selection priority.
One team can pick to play on either Radiant or Dire side, while the other team decides if they get first pick in the draft or second pick.
Unfortunately for Infamous, they entered the grand finals without being able to pick which side to play on or their picking order.
This was because the team's midlaner, Leonardo "Leostyle-" Sifuentes, caused his team to be penalised by naming his courier a derogatory term.
As a result, Hokori took Dire and second pick in all three of their victories.
Despite their disadvantage, Infamous looked good at the start of game one, taking an early kill lead and doing well in the laning stage.
However, Hokori's teamfight lineup meant the Peruvian team's late game was secure so long as they didn't fall too far behind.
When Hokori came knocking at the high ground of Infamous, there was little that could be done to repel them as they took down the barracks.
Hokori went for an interesting draft in game two, focusing on strength cores with Omniknight for Brayan "Gardick" Cárdenas backing them up.
Sven for Edward "Lumière" Valencia and a mid-lane Huskar on João "4nalog" Giannini proved to be a very durable and damaging duo for Infamous to deal with.
Game two was even until the two teams clashed at Roshan at the 34-minute mark, which saw Hokori secure a team wipe while losing nothing.
Gardick's impressive spell casting allowed his team to engage without worrying about their health, knowing that Omniknight would keep them all safe.
This eventually led to Hokari's victory.
Game three saw Infamous draft an impressive teamfight lineup, which forced Hokori to play multiple pickoff heroes such as Bane for Gardick and Doom for Pablo "Vitaly" Roman.
Hokori had a difficult task to execute in the final game of the series, as they had to ensure that David "Parker" Flores' Faceless Void was controlled in every teamfight.
But it seemed to be Hokori's destiny, as Vitaly delivered in the most important match of his life, casting Doom multiple times on Parker and securing teamfight after teamfight for his team.
The crucial fight of the game happened 36-minutes into the match, as Doom landed both a Hoof Stomp and Doom on Parker while he didn't have buyback, ensuring Hokori's victory in game three and their ticket to TI11.
With their victory, most of Hokori's roster have earned the right to play in their very first TI, with only Thiago "Thiolicor" Cordeiro playing in the tournament for the second time.
The team even shared the moment of their victory on Twitter.
TI11's regional qualifiers will be held from 3 to 17 September across the DPC's six regions: Western Europe, China, Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, North America, and South America. The qualifiers will be played in three batches, with two regions playing in each batch.
The first batch of qualifiers from 3 to 7 September featured Eastern Europe and South America. BetBoom Team won the Eastern European qualifier after soundly sweeping Outsiders in the grand finals.
The second batch featuring China and North America will then take place from 8 to 12 September. Finally, the last batch of qualifiers for Western Europe and Southeast Asia will be held from 13 to 17 September.
Three teams will fly to Singapore out of each qualifier. The winner of the qualifier will earn a spot in TI11's Group Stage while the second and third-placed teams will have to earn their spot in the LCQ.
For more details on the TI11 regional qualifiers, check here.
For everything you need to know about TI11, check here.
Edward "Lumière" Valencia
João "4nalog" Giannini
Pablo "Vitaly" Roman
Thiago "Thiolicor" Cordeiro
Brayan "Gardick" Cárdenas
David "Parker" Flores
Leonardo "Leosmile-" Sifuentes
Frank "Frank" Ayala
Miguel "Michael-" Gomez
Christian "Accel" Cruz
Otomo is a long-time gaming enthusiast and caster. He has been playing games since he was 10 and is the biggest Dota 2 fan.
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