Dota 2 Lima Major: Tundra, PSG.LGD, Beastcoast bomb out in first round of lower bracket
Team Aster, Evil Geniuses, and Team Spirit survive the first round of eliminations and secured at least a Top 8 finish.
The second day of the Dota 2 Lima Major Playoffs on Wednesday (1 March) saw the first three teams get eliminated from the lower bracket, and one of them was the reigning The International (TI) champions.
China's Team Aster kicked things off by defeating Tundra Esports and knocking out the world champions. Evil Geniuses (EG) then swept Beastcoast in a clash between the two powerhouses of South America in front of their home crowd.
Finally, TI10 champions Team Spirit met a familiar foe in PSG.LGD, and sent them packing to end the day.
Team Aster 2-1 Tundra Esports
The day began with a match between two of the strongest teams back at TI11: Tundra Esports, who won the championship, and Team Aster, who finished fourth. However, both teams have been in a slump at Lima.
Aster had a rough start to the Group Stage but still managed to secure an upper bracket berth, only to get knocked down to the lower bracket by Gaimin Gladiators in the opening day of the Playoffs. Meanwhile, Tundra had a promising start but subsequently fell off, only managing to make the lower bracket.
Both teams traded one-sided victories en route to a thrilling decider. Aster stomped in a 34-minute game one while Tundra took their sweet time choking out their opponents in a 51-minute game two.
With their tournament lives on the line in game three, Tundra went for a questionable carry Gyrocopter pick for Oliver "skiter" Lepko against a strong carry duo of Drow Ranger for Du "Monet" Peng and Templar Assassin for Zhai "Xwy" Jingkai on the side of Aster.
Tundra dominated the early to midgame thanks in large part to Martin "Saksa" Sazdov's heroics on his support Monkey King. However, Aster started to pull ahead once in the late game as their stronger carry duo could not be matched by skiter's Gyrocopter.
Despite their best efforts, Tundra were eventually forced to concede the series and their place at the Lima Major after a 48-minute slugfest.
Evil Geniuses 2-0 Beastcoast
The second match of the day was a highly-anticipated showdown of the two top teams in South America in front of their home crowd. However, it ended up being a rather anticlimactic affair as EG soundly swept Beastcoast out of the tournament.
Game one was a 30-minute rout, as Jean "Chris Luck" Salazar had a perfect 19-kill, 13-assist performance on Death Prophet against his former team. Crhistian "Pakazs" Savina on Nature's Prophet and Adrián "Wisper" Dobles on Primal Beast also pitched in with 10 kills apiece.
Chris Luck showed out on Death Prophet once again in the 33-minute closeout game, notching a game-high eight kills against three deaths. However, it was Pakazs on a surprise Lone Druid pick that led the way with a clean six kills.
Team Spirit 2-1 PSG.LGD
The day closed with a familiar showdown between Team Spirit and PSG.LGD, even if both teams have changed rosters since their epic clashes in the Grand Finals of TI10 and the Arlington Major. The TI10 champions prevailed once again over their old foes after a rollercoaster series.
Game one provided further proof that Lina is the strongest hero of the current patch. Spirit survived a strong early game showing from PSG.LGD, giving Illya "Yatoro" Mulyarchuk the time he needed to get his Lina farmed enough to take over and hand his team the win after 43 minutes.
PSG.LGD struck back hard in game two behind a masterful performance by Cheng "NothingToSay" Jin Xiang, who finished with a clean 16 kills and 11 assists to help force a decider. Guo "shiro" Xuanang also pitched in with 13 kills against two deaths on his carry Ursa.
Spirit showed shades of their championship form to close out the series in game three, completely outplaying PSG.LGD in teamfights to knock them out of the Lima Major in just under 30 minutes of action.
With their victories, Team Aster, EG, and Team Spirit have all secured at least a Top 8 finish as well as US$12,500 and 100 Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) points in winnings.
The second round of the lower bracket will see EG take on Team Aster while Team Spirit will be facing the winner of the other round one matchup between Talon Esports and HellRaisers, which will be played on day three.
Unfortunately for Tundra Esports, Beastcoast, and PSG.LGD, they will be going home empty-handed.
Here are the matchups for the third day of the Lima Major Playoffs:
Lower bracket round 1:
HellRaisers vs Talon Esports
Upper bracket semifinals:
Gaimin Gladiators vs Entity
Shopify Rebellion vs Team Liquid
The Lima Major Playoffs will take place from 28 February to 5 March and will be a double-elimination bracket. All Playoff matches will be a best-of-three except for the Grand Finals, which will be a full best-of-five series.
Teams will have to make the Top 8 in order to earn a cut of the Lima Major's US$500,000 prize pool and 1,900 DPC point pool. Those precious DPC points will go towards earning an all-important direct invite to this year's iteration of The International (TI), Dota 2's annual world championship tournament.
The Lima Major is the first Major of the 2023 DPC season and will feature 18 of the best teams in the circuit battling for their share of the US$500,000 prize pool and 1,900 DPC point pool. For everything you need to know about the Lima Major, check here.
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