Team Secret's carry player, Lasse "MATUMBAMAN" Urpalainen, recorded an incredible double Rampage in game two of his team's much-needed 2-1 win over Team Liquid on Thursday (13 May) to keep his squad's hopes of qualifying for the second Major of the 2021 Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) alive.
Their middling 2-3 record at the end of Week 4, which put them at fifth place in the league, also meant that they were in danger of being relegated to the lower division on top of potentially missing out on the Major — a dreadful prospect when considering they finished Season 1 of the European regional league undefeated.
Secret desperately needed a win over Liquid just to keep their heads above water, but even that looked out of reach for them after they lost the first game of the series.
However, Matumbaman had a masterful showing on Sven in game two to pull Secret back from the brink.
In what ended up being the decisive clash of the game at the 30-minute mark, Matumbaman single-handedly forced Liquid away from the Roshan pit, claimed the Aegis of the Immortal for himself, and cleaved through six enemy heroes to score an incredible double Rampage. Secret dealt a total of almost 19,000 damage in that fight, over 15,500 of which came solely from Matumbaman.
With Matumbaman's Sven proving far too much to handle, Liquid were eventually forced to tap out at the 34-minute mark to force the series to a deciding game three. Matumbaman finished the game with a series-high 15 kills and seven assists against just one death.
The Finnish professional continued to look unstoppable in game three, as his Wraith King also dished out an absurd amount of damage in clashes while Yazied "YapZor" Jaradat on his support Windranger locked down targets for his carry with multiple clutch Shackleshots.
Secret eventually forced the GG call from Liquid after 24 minutes to take the series. Matumbaman even capped things off with a massive critical strike on Aydin "iNSaNiA" Sarkohi's Abaddon, who didn't even get the chance to pop his Borrowed Time ultimate.
With their victory, Secret improve their record to 3-3 but are still tied for fifth place in the standings with Brame Esports. While the chances of Secret being relegated to the lower division have now been slimmed, them making the Major is still a long shot.
In order for Secret to still make the Major, they will have to win their last match of the regular season against Brame on 18 May — though their fate will be largely out of their hands after that. If either OG or Team Nigma lose both of their remaining matches, then Secret can leapfrog them in the standings to directly qualify for the Major. Otherwise, Secret will have to hope that tiebreakers with those teams can be forced and punch their tickets there.
With all that said, it's not the end of the world for Secret. Their first place finish in Season 1 of the European regional league and Top 4 placement in the ONE Esports Singapore Major are already guarantee them a direct invite to The International 10 (TI10), which has been confirmed to be taking place this August.
Even so, this is not a place where Secret would want to be, especially considering they were pegged as one of the favourites to win TI10 prior to the start of the circuit. There is still time for them to bounce back and return to their world-beater form, but whether or not they will be able to do so remains to be seen.
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