The International 10 (TI10) champions Team Spirit aren't looking to relinquish their hold over the Aegis of Champions any time soon, as they claimed the 2021-2022 Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) Winter Tour Regional Finals for Eastern Europe with a 3-0 sweep over regional rivals Virtus.pro (VP) in the grand finals.
Spirit didn't have the best start in the regional finals, as they fell victim to a 2-1 upset by HellRaisers in the opening round of the upper bracket.
But the TI10 champions were quickly able to right the ship, sweeping PuckChamp in the first round of the lower bracket, then getting their revenge on HellRaisers with a 2-0 sweep in the lower bracket finals to meet VP in the best-of-five grand finals.
Yatoro and TORONTOTOKYO dominate in games one and two
Despite coming from the lower bracket, Spirit looked like the heavy favorites to win the series early on as they stormed to a 2-0 lead behind dominant performances from carry player Illya "Yatoro" Mulyarchuk and midlaner Alexander "TORONTOTOKYO" Khertek.
Spirit's draft in game one tasked Yatoro and TORONTOTOKYO with dishing out the damage for their team as Drow Ranger and Queen of Pain, respectively.
Meanwhile, Magomed "Collapse" Khalilov on Outworld Devourer, Miroslaw "Mira" Kolpakov on a support Monkey King, and Yaroslav "Miposhka" Naidenov on Disruptor provided disables for their damage dealers.
VP were not able to withstand the firepower Spirit brought into the field, as the TI10 champions took the net worth lead at the six-minute mark and never looked back.
Yatoro and TORONTOTOKYO made good use of the teamfight control provided by their teammates to demolish VP's heroes in practically every fight en route to a 40-minute victory in the series opener.
TORONTOTOKYO led the way for Spirit in game one with a series-high 21 kills and 19 assists against just one death. Yatoro wasn't too shabby either, notching 14 kills and 15 assists of his own against one death.
Game two saw Spirit switch to a more mobile lineup with Yatoro on a carry Monkey King, TORONTOTOKYO on Ember Spirit, and Collapse on Spirit Breaker. Meanwhile, Mira on Grimstroke and Miposhka on Bane provided disables from the rear.
VP were in control for much of game two as Spirit couldn't break through their lines in straight-up five-on-five clashes early on.
However, the TI10 champions made good use of their highly-mobile lineup to isolate and pick off key VP heroes to swing the game back in their favor.
The turning point of the game came in an extended clash around the 35-minute mark, where Spirit used their mobility and buybacks to force VP to a protracted fight that only got worse for them the longer they were committed to it.
At the end of that insane clash, Spirit scored a teamwipe on a VP squad that used all of their buybacks and turned a less than 1,000 net worth lead to over 9,000.
Spirit continued to snowball and were able to force the GG call from VP after 40 minutes of action.
Yatoro and TORONTOTOKYO combined for 27 of their team's 39 total kills while giving up four deaths apiece as Spirit took a commanding 2-0 series lead.
Spirit secure the sweep with a (just under) 18-minute stomp
Spirit smelled blood in the water in game three, as they absolutely dominated the laning phase with Yatoro on a carry Templar Assassin, TORONTOTOKYO on Kunkka, and Collapse on Axe. Well-timed ganks from Mira on Mirana and Miposhka on Bane helped to further shut down VP's cores.
With Spirit holding a seemingly insurmountable 19-4 kill lead and over 10,000 net worth lead, VP conceded after just 17 minutes and 57 seconds.
Only Mira and Miposhka gave up kills on the side of Spirit (with Miposhka having three in total) while Spirit's cores combined for a clean 13 kills to secure the 3-0 sweep.
With their victory, Spirit claimed the championship of the Winter Tour Regional Finals for Eastern Europe as well as the grand prize of US$50,000 and 250 DPC points. Meanwhile, VP settle for second place and will take home US$25,000 and 130 DPC points in consolation.
As the champions of the Eastern European regional league and Regional Finals, Spirit finish the Winter Tour with 550 DPC points — tied with TI10 finals opponent PSG.LGD for the top spot in the overall DPC point leaderboard.
The Winter Tour Regional Finals will take place across the weekends of 11 to 13 February and 18 to 20 February, with three regions competing in each weekend. It will feature the Top 4 teams of the DPC's six regions competing for their cut of a US$100,000 prize pool and all-important DPC points.
For everything you need to know about the Winter Tour Regional Finals, check here.
Team Spirit roster:
Illya "Yatoro" Mulyarchuk
Alexander "TORONTOTOKYO" Khertek
Magomed "Collapse" Khalilov
Miroslaw "Mira" Kolpakov
Yaroslav "Miposhka" Naidenov
Ivan "Pure" Moskalenko
Danil "gpk" Skutin
Dmitry "DM" Dorokhin
Daniyal "yamich" Lazebnyy
Egor "Xakoda" Lipartiia