Team Aster, Alliance, Virtus.pro (VP), and NoPing Esports were the first teams to be eliminated in the opening round of the lower bracket at the WePlay AniMajor Playoffs.
All four of those squads were notably the top teams of their respective regional leagues and were directly seeded to upper bracket of the AniMajor Playoffs as a result. Despite never having to go through the Wildcard or Group Stage, they lost their opening matches in the upper bracket on Wednesday (9 June) and got dropped down to the lower bracket, where they were then promptly knocked out of the tournament.
Here's how the matches for the second day of the WePlay AniMajor Playoffs went down:
TNC Predator 2-1 Team Aster
Scrappy Filipino squad TNC Predator kicked off the second day of the Playoffs with a bang by pulling off a huge 2-1 upset over Team Aster, the top dogs of the Chinese regional league. It was a rollercoaster of a series for TNC, as they threw away a lead to hand game one over to Aster, pulled off a massive comeback in game two, then absolute dominated in game three to send their opponents packing.
Team Spirit 2-1 Alliance
The second series of the day saw another huge upset, as underdog CIS/Eastern Europe squad Team Spirit defeated top Western Europe team Alliance, 2-1. Spirit started the series strong with a 42-minute victory in game one but Alliance bounced back in the next game to send the match to a decider.
With their tournament lives on the line, Spirit made it look easy as they eliminated Alliance in a 29-minute beatdown with a very lopsided 25-2 kill score.
Vici Gaming 2-1 Virtus.pro
In the closest series of the day, Chinese squad Vici Gaming (VG) outlasted top CIS/Eastern Europe team VP to force the third Playoff-seeded team to take an early exit.
VG cruised to an easy victory to start the series but VP dominated game two to send the series to a game three. VG took full advantage of some sloppy play from VP in the decider to take the 2-1 series victory and keep their tournament hopes alive.
Evil Geniuses 2-1 NoPing Esports
Despite starting in the lower bracket and facing the top-seeded team of South America in NoPing Esports, Evil Geniuses (EG) were still heavily favoured in the last match of the day. After all, the North American powerhouse was a finalist in the previous Major and is considered one of best teams in the world.
Game one went just as expected with EG taking an easy 37-minute victory. However, NoPing struck back hard in game two and absolutely dominated their opponents to send the series to a deciding game three. The South American squad was unfortunately unable to keep their momentum from game two going into the decider, with EG eventually closing out the series and knocking NoPing out.
With today's results, TNC, Spirit, VG, and EG advance to the second round of the lower bracket. All four teams are now guaranteed at least a Top 8 finish, US$12,500, and 200 Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) points.
That latest haul of DPC points have also guaranteed VG will be joining EG and VP among the 12 teams to receive an all-important direct invite to The International 10 (TI10). TNC and Spirit will need to advance further into the AniMajor in order to secure their own direct invites.
Despite getting eliminated early from the AniMajor, Aster and Alliance are almost guaranteed to receive direct invites to TI10 due to their performance in the regional leagues.
The second round of the lower bracket on Friday (11 June) will see TNC face EG and Spirit take on VG for the right to advance to the third round of elimination matches, where they will be facing the losers of the upper bracket semi-finals.
The WePlay AniMajor, the second and final Major event of the 2021 DPC, will run until 13 June as the remaining teams battle for their cut of the US$500,000 prize pool and 2,700 DPC point pool. For everything you need to know about the WePlay AniMajor, check here.
The WePlay AniMajor also serves as the final chance for teams to earn DPC points in order to secure a direct invite to TI10, which will be held in Stockholm, Sweden this August and features massive US$40 million prize pool.
Check out esports videos from Yahoo TV: